Resignation Letter

Resignation Letter Definition

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When an employee notifies the employer that he or she wishes to terminate their employment with your company, you will want to ask for a letter of resignation or resignation letter.

The resignation letter provides you with an official document for the employee’s personnel file that demonstrates the employment ending was employee initiated.

While the employee may have told you verbally why he has decided to leave your company, you do not need to ask the employee to document his reasons in the resignation letter. In fact, smart employees won’t put anything in a resignation letter that might be misconstrued or taken personally by the reader at a later date.

They recognize that the current reader of the resignation letter, who understands why they quit, may not be the person, who is relying on the contents of the personnel file, to provide a reference a year down the road.

In this day and age of easy background checking, smart employees do and say nothing in a resignation letter that will burn any bridges when they move on to a new job. Maintaining each successful employment experience as a reference is too important to trade for the momentary feeling of playing “gotcha” with the current employer upon departure.

The resignation letter, in its most simple form, states that the employee is resigning and gives the final date of employment. Generally, an employee will provide the current employer with two week’s notice, as stated in the letter of resignation.

(For a positive employment reference in the future, two week’s notice is essential.) A slightly more complex resignation letter provides details about why the employee is leaving - the opportunities in the new position.

Assuming that the employee is valued and leaving your company in a positive manner, most employers are happy to have the employee finish working their two weeks of notice after turning in the resignation letter.

If you are concerned about the employee’s access to confidential information, his access to computer equipment, or the impact of his resignation on coworker morale, it is best to walk the employee out of the company upon receiving the resignation letter.

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