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You recently accepted a new position with a different company or plan to move on from your current job.

In either case, leaving a company behind is bittersweet. 

Yet, expanding your career is a positive thing!

Before you go, there are steps to take to leave gracefully. 

Luckily, there are ways to move on while remaining on good terms with your current place of employment. 

It all starts with a professional letter of resignation. Crafting a professional letter is of the utmost importance. 

But there’s more. 

In this article, we also explain why you should take it one step further

How can you go above and beyond writing an excellent letter? 

Take the time to have a conversation with your boss with the letter of resignation letter in hand. 

You have the power to be an excellent employee until your final day. 

Follow these steps to write the perfect professional resignation letter. And learn how to achieve a smooth and positive transition.

1. Draft a letter of resignation 

As you begin drafting your letter of resignation, there are a few things to keep in mind. 

The first is to understand why submitting a letter of resignation is standard practice. 

Usually, a company requires written communication, which means it’s necessary to leave a paper trail of documentation. 

It varies on whether fax or email count. The best thing is to deliver two weeks notice to your boss on a physical piece of paper

Set up a time to meet and when the meeting starts, arrive with your resignation in hand. 

It doesn’t matter whether you write out the entire letter or type it out, as long as it’s legible. If you type it out, you can email a version to your boss (after the meeting) and copy it to the HR department. 

If you decide to skip the meeting and send it through email, it’s still a good idea to print it out and sign it to cover your bases. 

To make the letter official, sign it in your handwriting.

So the steps are as follows: 

  • Type or handwrite a letter
  • Print it out
  • Sign the letter
  • Deliver the letter in person 

Legal obligations

Though uncommon, an employer can take you to court to dispute your leaving the company. 

If this should happen, you must have proof that you gave your two weeks notice in writing, and not just verbally. 

If you don’t give adequate notice and quit verbally, it will be your word against theirs.

Furthermore, another issue that could pop up is wrongful resignation. Wrongful resignation means that you didn’t give enough notice when you quit. 

If they bring you to court, it would be difficult for your employer to make a case against you. They would have to prove that your actions financially damaged their company. 

Hopefully, either of these scenarios won’t happen. But, in case either of them does, leave behind a paper trail of your resignation.

2. Guidelines to follow 

As you begin to write your letting of resignation, there are some guidelines to follow

Following these guidelines will ensure you don’t leave anything out:

  • Keep your letter professional and to the point. 
  • Try not to over-explain yourself. 
  • Clearly communicate in a short and concise way. 

What to include

Are you wondering what to have in your letter?

Here’s a brief outline of what you should include in your resignation letter:

  • Name, date, address
  • Job title
  • Write that you are resigning from your position (two weeks from the day you submit the letter)
  • Include what your last working day will be
  • Explain why you will be leaving (optional)
  • A brief thank you to your boss and team members 
  • Wrap up the letter by explaining what your next steps will be
  • You should also offer to train or recruit a replacement
  • End the letter with your signature

3. Focus on the transition section in the letter

Demonstrating your value to the company will mean a lot to them. 

After giving notice, there’s a transition period. This is when you wrap everything up before leaving the company. 

Don’t leave them hanging without clearly stating how you plan to help during the next two weeks. If you do, it’ll be hard to leave your job on a good note. 

In the letter, state that you will spend the next two weeks finishing up any current projects.

You could also mention how you plan to aid employees that you may manage or support. 

In addition, mention how you will help your replacement train for the position. 

By aiding the replacement, you’ll leave a good impression and stay dedicated to your job until the last day.

4. Meet with your employer or HR to give them the letter 

After crafting a two weeks notice letter, arrange a time to speak with your boss. 

It’s best to hand your letter of resignation to them in person during the meeting. Speaking to your employer in person with your notice in hand is courteous.

It also gives your boss time to find a replacement for your position. 

The last thing you want is for the news of you leaving to come from someone else in the company. Tell your boss ahead of time to prevent this problem from happening.

Leaving on good terms should be your goal. Arrange a time to meet with your boss to maintain a positive relationship up until you leave. 

If you’re unable to meet with a direct supervisor, arrange a time to meet with someone in the HR office. 

If there are issues with your boss, it may be better to meet with HR. Your company may have a policy that you need to go to HR first to resign anyway, so find out what the policies are. 

Whoever you speak to, don’t wait too long to submit your letter of resignation. 

For everything to go smoothly, you and your supervisor to have an exit plan in place.

5. Prepare for the conversation 

If you do get the opportunity to schedule a time to speak to your supervisor, as you prepare for the talk, there are a few things to remember.

Focus on the positive

The first thing to remember is to focus on the positive. 

Since resigning from your position isn’t an easy topic, think about the best way to approach giving your notice. Consider what you’d like to say ahead of time. 

When you have the discussion, be honest without divulging too much. 

For example, if you’re leaving for an opportunity to use your talents in a new and exciting way, tactfully explain this to your supervisor.

Let them know the date of your last day 

Your letter will already explain everything you cover in the meeting.

Despite that, it’s still a good idea to not only tell them why you’re leaving but also when your last day will be.

Two weeks’ notice is common. Your employer may ask about current projects and how you can potentially help train a new employee, as discussed earlier. 

Thank your boss for the opportunity to work with them and the company. Also, explain what you learned and how you can use these skills in the future. 

Another thing to keep in mind is how to handle a boss who tries to get you to stay. If this should happen, have a plan in place on what you would say. 

If they offer to pay you more, you can decline. State you appreciate the offer but feel it is best to move on from the position. 

When everything is said and done, remember to be gracious throughout the entire process. 

Crafting a professional letter of resignation is important. With that, demonstrating all that you submitted on paper is just as, if not more, vital. 

Now you know what to include when submitting a professional letter of resignation! 

It’s now time to get it written and sent off to your employer. 

You’re leaving on a good note, and that’s something every employee should strive to do.

Author Bio:

Our property manager Genevieve Rossman has been in the multifamily industry for a decade, and is passionate about helping you find your perfect place to call home! Broadstone Summer Street is a place where luxury and creativity meet, she and her team look forward to offering you an experience like no other.