There’s a certain etiquette involved when—for whatever reason—you decide to quit your job. It's best to tell your boss in person, if possible, that you are resigning from your job, and then follow up with a formal resignation letter. It is also best to give your employer at least two weeks' notice when you are planning to leave.
If you need to alert your boss to your resignation right away, you might have to send a resignation email instead of a letter. Even if you send an official letter or tell your boss in person, you may choose to send a follow-up email to confirm the details.
Read below for information on why you should give two weeks’ notice, how to write a resignation email, and review a sample email message.
Why Give Two Weeks Notice?
It’s important to provide your employer with two weeks’ notice if you can. This is a standard practice when resigning.
Giving two weeks' notice provides enough time for you to transition out of the office and to finish up any projects you can. It also gives your employer time to begin to hire (and possibly train) your replacement.
However, two weeks’ notice is not legally required unless you're covered by a contract. If you have a union agreement or employment contract that states how much notice you have to give, definitely follow those rules.
Otherwise, do your best to give two weeks’ notice. This is a good way to maintain a positive relationship with your employer, which you may need should you ever need to ask them for a recommendation.
Circumstances that might require you to leave before giving two weeks’ notice include a personal emergency or unbearable (or unsafe) work conditions.
Tips for Writing a Resignation Email Message
- State the date. In the letter, include the date you plan to leave the company. This will give your employer a clear sense of your timeline.
- Don’t go into details. There's no need to go into a lot of detail in your resignation letter—it's most important to convey that you are resigning, and when your last day will be.
- Express gratitude. Remember to thank your employer for the opportunities you have been given during your tenure. This is also a good moment to express your gratitude for the years you have worked there.
- Offer assistance. Offer to help the company during the two-week transition. You might offer to train a new employee, for example, or to write a description of your daily work responsibilities and/or unfinished projects for your successor.
- Ask any questions. This is also an opportunity to ask any questions about compensation or benefits, such as where or when you will receive your last paycheck. You should send the email to both your manager and to the Human Resources office. Human Resources will be able to answer these kinds of questions.
- Provide contact information. You might want to include any non-company email address or other forms of contact information so that your employer can get in touch with you in the future.
- Proofread and edit. Be sure to thoroughly proofread your email, fixing any spelling or grammar errors. Also, make sure that the date you give for your last day of work is correct. Even though you are leaving the company, you want your last email to be professional and polished.
Two Weeks' Notice Resignation Email Message
Subject Line: Notice of Resignation - Jane Doe
Dear Ms. Smith,
I am writing to notify you that I am providing two weeks’ notice and will be resigning from my position as Customer Service Representative with ABCD Company. My last day of employment will be January 15.
Please let me know if I can provide any assistance with the transition. I would be glad to provide whatever support I can during my remaining time with the company. You can also contact me with any questions on my personal email, JaneDoe@firstnamelastname.com, or my cell phone, 555-555-5555.
I wish you and the company success in the future. Thank you so much for all the support you have provided me during my tenure with the company.