How to Write a Resignation Letter (With Samples and Tips)

Updated February 7, 2023

Employees can resign from a company in several ways. Some choose to tell their manager in person, while others provide written notice. Providing management with a resignation letter is often the best way to resign from a position formally. In this article, we explain what a resignation letter is, why they're important, provide steps for writing it, and give you a template and examples.

What is a resignation letter?

A resignation letter is a formal document you present to your manager or employer explaining your departure from your job. Usually, employees provide resignation letters after verbally explaining their resignation to their company. The resignation letter is simply a formality, and human resources often include it in the employee's personnel file.

Related: How to Quit a Job the Right Way

Resignation letter format

It is always best to speak directly with your manager before sending a resignation letter to give them as much time as possible to prepare. If you work remotely or do not see your manager in person, ask if you can have a conversation via video chat or phone.

Typically, a resignation letter includes the following information:

  • Statement of resignation from the company

  • Date of last day of work

  • Statement of gratitude

  • Next steps or important information

  • Signature

Related: How to Write a Polite Letter of Resignation (With Steps)

Why are resignation letters important?

If you decide to leave your job, submitting a resignation letter is a matter of professional courtesy. Resignation letters are also crucial for HR departments to keep on hand as a record of your time at the company for things like payroll and to reference in the future if necessary.

These letters are also important because they contain essential operational information for your direct manager, such as your last day and what is needed as you plan your departure from the company.

Related: 13 Signal To Help You Decide When To Quit Your Job

How to write a resignation letter

Writing a letter of resignation can be simple if you follow a few key steps. Before writing your letter, you should consult with your direct supervisor or HR manager to follow any company processes regarding resignations. For example, they might ask you to provide specific information or send your letter to certain people at the company. Follow these steps to write a resignation letter:

  1. Record the time and date

  2. Start with an address line

  3. Include a statement of resignation

  4. List your last day or work

  5. Add a statement of gratitude

  6. List next steps or important information

  7. Close with your signature

1. Record the time and date

A standard business letter typically includes the time and date. In an email, this information is not necessary as it is digitally available. If you plan to type a letter, you should include this information at the top of the page.

Related: How to Write an Official Letter (With Template and Example)

2. Start with an address line

Address the recipient by name. You can use introductions like “Dear,” “Hello,” or simply “Mr./Ms. [supervisor's last name].”

Related:

  • How to Write a Resignation E-Mail Subject (With Examples)

  • Seven Best Email Greeting For All Situations

3. Include a statement of resignation

Clearly state that you are writing to submit your formal resignation from the company. If you'd like, you can include your position title as well.

4. List your last day of work

While providing two weeks' notice is standard, your company might have a different notice period policy. After getting this information from a direct manager, list the date and weekday of your final day at the company.

Related:

  • Do You Have to Give Two Weeks' Notice as a Professional?

  • How to Write an Immediate Resignation Letter in 8 Steps

5. Add a statement of gratitude

It is always a good career decision to keep your relationships positive. Writing one or two sentences explaining what you are thankful for about your time at the company will help foster a peaceful transition.

6. List next steps or important information

List any key information the recipient should be aware of regarding your transition. These details can be worked out with your manager ahead of time. If you're unsure what to write, simply adding that you are happy to do whatever you can to make the transition as smooth as possible will be appreciated.

Related: How to Request a Relieving Letter (With FAQ and Templates)

7. Close with your signature

Finish the letter by signing your name after a closing statement like “Sincerely” or “Thank you.”

Resignation letter template

Using a template to structure your resignation letter can be helpful. Below is a sample resignation letter template and suggestions for customizing it based on your own unique circumstances.

Dear Mr./Ms. [your supervisor's last name],

Please accept this as my formal resignation from [company]. My last day will be [your final day of work], two weeks from today. I am grateful for your support during my time here and sincerely appreciate all the valuable experiences I have gained. It has been a pleasure working with you and the team.

Please let me know if there's anything I can do to help during this transition. I wish you all the best.

Best wishes, and thank you for everything,

[your name]

Resignation letter examples

Your resignation letter might differ from the general template based on why you are leaving your position. Consider your departure explanation when crafting your resignation letter. Here are a few sample paragraphs that can explain your departure in more detail:

  • Resignation due to a better opportunity

  • Resignation due to relocation

  • Resignation due to family reasons

  • Resignation due to a change in career

  • Resignation due to returning to school

Related: What To Include in a Retirement Letter of Resignation

Resignation due to a better opportunity

Dear Mr. Smith,

I have accepted a position at a company that I feel is a better fit for my career. Please accept this note as my formal resignation from Painters Deluxe. My last day will be two weeks from today, June 8th.

While I will be moving on to a new position, I am deeply grateful for the opportunities to grow and learn during my time here.

Sincerely,

Mark Robins

Related: How To Address a Business Letter Professionally

Resignation due to relocation

Dear Ms. Jones,

Please accept this as my formal resignation from Jackson Plumbing. My last day will be August 12th, two weeks from today. I will be relocating to Montreal in the coming months to be closer to family.

Thank you for the opportunity to learn and grow in the accounting department–I hope to find a new position with equally inspiring, helpful and kind colleagues. I wish the company success in the future.

Please let me know of the ways I can help make the transition as smooth as possible.

Best,

Pat Arnold

Resignation due to family reasons

Dear Ms. Archer,

I am writing to inform you that I will resign next month from my role at Montgomery's. Family circumstances require my full attention at this time and leave me unable to continue in this role.

I will be available over the next month to assist with the transition.

Sincerely,

Eleanor Glass

Related: 3 Examples of Writing a Resignation Letter for Personal Reasons

Resignation due to a change in career

Dear Mr. Westcott,

Please accept my resignation effective March 28th. I have accepted a position at a construction firm and look forward to the new direction of my career, even though I will miss my work with you.

Thank you for the support and the opportunities over Hanson and Brothers.

Please let me know if you need any assistance during this transition and how I can help over the next few weeks.

Best,

Arthur Chess

Related: How To Write Salutations (With Examples)

Resignation due to returning to school

Dear Ms. Brown,

Please accept my resignation effective July 1st. Next month, I will be enrolling in graduate school and will need to resign from my role at Pools and Spas Unlimited.

I want to thank you for the many great opportunities I had while working on this team. The learning experiences and skills I have developed here have laid the ideal foundation for this new stage in my life at graduate school.

Please let me know how I can assist during this two-week transition. Thank you again for the many positive experiences over the past two years, and I look forward to staying in touch.

Sincerely,

Mary Adams

Tips for writing a resignation letter

Here are several tips you can use to make your resignation letter as effective as possible:

  • Keep it positive: Regardless of why you're resigning, the tone of this letter should be positive—aim to part on good terms and maintain your professional network. Above all, do not use your resignation letter to vent frustration.

  • Deliver your letter in person: If possible, you may want to deliver your resignation letter in person to your manager. If you resign with a hard copy, include the date at the top of the letter. You may also send an email. Use a subject line that's clear and direct, such as Resignation—[Your Name].

  • Keep it brief: If you are leaving your company for sensitive reasons and prefer not to provide optional details, simply include your statement of resignation, last day at the company and a statement like “I wish the company success in its future endeavours.”

  • Plan for an immediate departure: In certain situations, your employer may ask you to leave on the day you resign. Pay attention to what happens when others resign and plan accordingly.

  • Follow your manager's instructions for the next steps: After you submit a formal resignation, your manager might ask you to put together a transition plan, finish specific projects or write a goodbye note to your colleagues.

Related: How To Write A Short Notice Resignation Letter (With Examples)

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