Professional Resignation Letter Example

Woman looking at computer monitor
••• Thomas Barwick / Iconica / Getty Images

When you resign from employment, it's a good idea to provide the company with a professional resignation letter informing your employer that you will be leaving.

This formal letter can help to leave the company with a strong and positive impression of you as an employee.

Why Write a Resignation Letter

Leaving on a positive note can be helpful if you need a reference from the company or your manager.

Plus, it's always a good idea to put important information in writing—that way, you can confirm your last day of employment, and there can be no questions about when you are departing from the company.

Your resignation letter also demonstrates to future employers who request your employment records that you left the job of your own volition rather than being laid-off or fired.

What to Include in Your Resignation Letter 

Resignation letters should be brief and to-the-point. You have no obligation to share details about why you are leaving the company or where you are going next. There are three important things to include in your letter: 

  • The fact that you are resigning;
  • When your last day of work will be; 
  • A “thank you” for the opportunity of having been able to work for the employer.

Since this is a formal letter, you'll also need to include the date you wrote it. If anyone looks at your letter in the future, this will help make it clear that you have provided two weeks’ notice before your departure, which is frequently required in employment contracts.

If you have the availability, you should also extend an offer to help during the transition that will occur.

Your offer to help might include training your replacement or writing a list of your daily work responsibilities and open projects for their use so that they can “hit the ground running,” with as little disruption to your department as possible. 

What Not to Write in a Resignation Letter

Just as important as the information you do include in your letter is the information you omit. You want your resignation letter to leave a good impression.

Even if you were unhappy at your job or dislike the company or your colleagues, now is not the time to voice those opinions. Keep your letter civil and gracious. See more tips for writing a resignation letter

What You Need to Know Before You Resign 

If you have a contract, make sure you are familiar with the terms before you quit your job. If at all possible, adhere to the contract guidelines when you resign.

If you have a strong rapport with your manager or supervisor, it is also considerate to speak with them in person first to let them know that you will be submitting your formal letter of resignation. Letting your boss know that you will be leaving before you officially resign gives them extra time to absorb the news and to prepare the team for your departure.

Sample Resignation Letter

Below, you'll find a resignation letter example that you can use as inspiration if you need to write one of your own. You'll also find tips about what information to include in your resignation letter, as well as how to handle in-person communications during your remaining time at the company. 

Professional Resignation Letter Example

Jill Employee
1232 15th Street
Manuhet, NY 12446

May 26, 2020

Ms. Margaret Manager
Chief Executive Officer
Acme Company
456 Main Street
Huntington, NY 12345

Dear Ms. Manager,

I am writing to notify you that I am resigning from my position as Customer Service Manager with Acme Company. My last day of employment will be June 12, 2020.

I appreciate the opportunities I have been given during my time with your company, as well as your professional guidance and support.

I wish you and the company the best of success in the future.

If I can assist with the transition to my successor, please do let me know.

Very sincerely,

Signature (hard copy letter)

Jill Employee

How to Send a Resignation Letter

Your letter can be addressed to either your manager or your human resources contact, and you can send it as an email or else print out and provide a hard copy. Here are resignation email message examples to help you draft your own, and more resignation letter samples are also available for review. 

If you send an email, be sure to put your name and "resignation" in the subject line of your message. For example:

Subject: Jill Employee - Resignation Notice

Be Prepared for After You Resign

Be aware that even if you offer two weeks’ notice, there is a chance that the company will not take you up on it.

The company may accept your resignation as effective immediately.

Make sure you are prepared for this possibility financially. Just in case this should occur, you should also clear out your computer before you tender your resignation. If you are asked to leave immediately, you may not have time to delete files or collect email addresses and phone numbers so you can keep in touch with colleagues. 

Here are more resignation do's and don'ts that will help you ensure the process of quitting your position goes smoothly. 

Resignation Letters for Special Circumstances

In some cases you may not be able to provide two weeks notice or you may want to provide additional information to your manager about your departure. Here are resignation letters for many different circumstances to help you resign with class.

Article Sources