How to Word a Letter to Leave Your Job

Leave an employer on good terms whenever possible.

Leave an employer on good terms whenever possible.

Changing jobs can help you secure larger raises and explore new opportunities. It is often difficult to find the right words to let your current employer know that you are leaving. A letter of resignation can be an opportunity to express your sincere thanks for the time you spent with the company, provide constructive feedback and potentially, set up future consulting work with your former employer.

Open your letter with the date, address of the recipient and a professional salutation. Although you may be sending it to a boss that you know well, a resignation letter is formal business correspondence and should be treated as such.

Begin by stating that you are offering your resignation and clearly state the effective date. Your employment contract or company policy will likely state the minimum amount of notice you need to provide an employer. However, replacing a skilled employee can be difficult; provide your employer with a letter of resignation as soon as you have decided to leave.

Provide the reason for leaving, briefly. This information helps your company know what it needs to do in order to recruit and retain the best employees. You may provide the name of your future employer if you feel it is appropriate. However, do not feel the need to explain personal circumstances, especially those that may make the reader uncomfortable.

Express your gratitude for the time you've spent with your current employer and the experience you've gained there. This experience was likely pivotal in allowing you to secure the opportunity for better employment. Mention at least two experiences with the company that you found particularly rewarding.

State any willingness to be involved in training a replacement, or in consulting for the company after your end of employment. This can be critical for a company if you lead development of new services or systems, and in those cases your help may be required. This will be discussed in more detail with your boss and the company lawyers as you finalize your resignation.

Close on a positive note and sign the letter by hand.


  • Schedule a meeting to discuss your resignation after sending your letter. Be prepared for potentially strong emotions; your boss may take your resignation personally or it may leave the company in a difficult position to meet its goals.

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Chris Daniels covers advances in nutrition and fitness online. Daniels has numerous certifications and degrees covering human health, nutritional requirements and sports performance. An avid cyclist, weightlifter and swimmer, Daniels has experienced the journey of fitness in the role of both an athlete and coach.

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