how to write a respectful resignation letter [+Samples & Templates]

If you are quitting your job, you are not alone.

Resignation letter example: woman typing on laptop at home

The workforce has “revolutionizedgreat resignation, Some experts have renamed the recent spikes in employee resignations “The Great Reimagining” or “The Great Realization”. People are re-evaluating how they work, where they work and why they work.

Download Now: 5 Free Resignation Letter Templates

Even though millions of people leave their jobs every month, we understand that telling your boss you are leaving the company is not an easy conversation. A respectful resignation letter can mean the difference between an awkward goodbye and a long-term professional connection.

Ideally, you would provide the resignation letter two weeks prior to leaving the company. This lets you officially announce your termination at the company and provide essential housekeeping information, such as your last day and other details about your departure.

An effective one helps you ensure a positive conversation with your boss and a smooth transition for your next visit.

But how do you write a good resignation letter? What should you include and exclude?

Writing a resignation letter can seem like a daunting task, so we’ve created a professional resignation letter template to get you started and include examples for inspiration.

resignation letter

The letter should be detailed but concise. You should inform your manager of your decision, but keep it professional if the reasons are less positive.

Resignation Letter Format Example: Resignation Letter Example with Labeled Paragraphs

The format of a resignation letter is generally as follows:

  • Date and Greeting: Your letter should begin with the date, with a formal salutation to your manager.
  • Resignation statement: Use the opening paragraph to state what role you are leaving, and when. This is known as the statement of resignation.
  • body paragraph: The body paragraph can be used to express gratitude for your time at the company as well as your exit plan.
  • closing paragraph: Although optional, you can use the concluding paragraph to list your contact information. This is especially encouraged if you plan to use your former employer as a reference.

In the next section, we’ll learn about these key elements in more detail and look at some examples.

What should I include in a professional resignation letter?

Writing a professional resignation letter begins with understanding each of its components:

1. Resignation details and last date

Begin your letter by stating your position in the company. If you work in a small company and your boss knows you well, this may seem redundant, but it’s necessary to include it because the letter is your official termination. This information should be accompanied by a simple statement of your resignation.

Also, it’s helpful to provide an expiration date in the first paragraph because it’s one of the first questions your employer will ask.

Here’s what this first paragraph might look like in practice:

I want to inform you that I am resigning from my post [Position Name] for [Company Name]effective [Date],

2. Gratitude

Take the time to reflect on how you’ve grown or what you’ve appreciated most about your time at the company. Be as specific as possible. Perhaps the company provided opportunities for professional development. You may have enjoyed the atmosphere that the company fostered and the supportive environment.

It’s also nice for your employer to receive a thank you note for the time and resources they used to assist with your career development. Here’s an example of what it might look like:

I appreciate the opportunities for professional development that you have provided me over the past two years. i have enjoyed my tenure [Company Name] And feel honored to be a part of such a supportive team.

If you want, you can include where you’re going. For example, if you are switching industries or going to graduate school to pursue a passion, it may be appropriate to include this. For example:

i accepted a position [New Job Title]and i’m looking forward [pursuing my passion in [X] or continue your work with focus [Y],

However, if you are leaving the company for a competitor, it is better to omit such information.

3. Transition details

In the third paragraph, mention your desire to make the transition easier. For example:

If I can be of any help during this transition, please let me know. I am available to help train my replacement and ensure that all my reports are up to date before my last day of work.

This sentence may sound different to you. But regardless of what you write about, it’s good practice to include specific details about how you’ll help.

As an optional follow-up paragraph, briefly review the work you’ll be surrendering when you officially leave the company. Although it is technically your manager’s responsibility to choose this task and determine how it will continue, it is helpful to list all the projects and tasks you will be in charge of in the interim as you transition to the company and Can be made even easier.

If you didn’t serve in a managerial capacity or collaborate with other departments, you can skip this part.

4. Personal Contact Information

This last paragraph is optional and doesn’t need to be included all the time, especially if you don’t have any desire or need to use your former employer as a reference. However, many candidates choose to maintain their professional networks. The ending might look like this:

Thanks again for giving me the opportunity to work in [Company Name], I wish you the best of luck and look forward to staying in touch. Feel free to email me [Email Address],

what not to include in a resignation letter

1. Future Career Moves

While you can describe where you’re going next, you don’t need to tell your employer in detail about your new position or salary. Keep things professional. You can acknowledge how the current position helped you advance within your industry. Your letter should be direct and reflective of your employer.

2. Foul Language

This goes without saying, but a resignation letter is not the time to use profanity and vulgar language. You need to remain respectful and professional until the end of your term. Although you may feel the urge to criticize your former job, a resignation letter is not the time to air dirty laundry.

3. Emotional attachment

If you are leaving a supportive work environment, it is helpful to leave emotional feelings in the letter. Be as professional as possible. You can articulate those feelings through face-to-face encounters with others.

4. Criticism from colleagues

Your resignation letter does not need to include negative comments about co-workers or managers at the company. The letter is for the end of your term, not for blaming others for unfinished business.

5. Introducing bitterness

This is not the time to show your displeasure with your current job. You need to reflect on the positive moments and how you gained useful knowledge about the industry and yourself. You don’t have to leave on a bad note with your employer.

professional resignation letter samples

With the above template in mind, let’s look at some sample resignation letters for different positions, each taking a slightly different but cordial tone to their resignation.

1. Grace Resignation Letter Sample

If they are not work related reasons then you can share why you are leaving. Reasons should be positive or neutral. Its tone is grateful that the employer took a chance on you. Most offer an extended hand to train the incoming person. The letter includes at least two weeks notice of resignation.

Professional Resignation Letter Samples: Example of Graceful Resignation Letter

2. Brief Resignation Letter Sample

A concise resignation letter will include two important things: the date of your resignation and a formal notice to your supervisor. A good letter may also include a “thank you” line, but it is not necessary. Although you are ending your tenure with your current employer, you don’t want to burn a bridge without honoring your notice deadline.

Professional Resignation Letter Samples: Concise Resignation Letter Examples

3. Immediate Resignation Letter Sample

While the best way to quit is to give at least two weeks’ notice and offer to help with the transition, sometimes circumstances make this impossible. If you need to leave your job immediately without any notice, you need an immediate resignation letter.

Here is a sample that may help you:

Professional Resignation Letter Samples: Immediate Resignation Letter Examples

Free Professional Resignation Letter Templates



Sometimes the nature of your position merits a more specific letter of resignation when you leave. Below are some templates to help these more dynamic roles make a great departure from the company.

1. Contractor Resignation Letter Template

If you work independently, you may need to adjust the focus of your resignation letter to address your final assignment and exactly how you will be parting ways with your client. This includes your current duties, tasks you will no longer be completing, and how you will accept your final payment.

Free Professional Resignation Letter Template: Executive Resignation Letter Example

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2. Executive Resignation Letter Template

If you’re in an executive- or senior-level leadership role, a quick email or two-paragraph notice to your superior may not suffice as an official resignation.

Because these roles are harder to fill, you can take on a more important role in transition, especially as you manage more people and direct more projects.

The example below divides resignation into two categories. The first is the resignation itself, and the second is how (and with whom) the resigning person’s work will continue. This is just one of the various templates we offer.

Resignation Letter Example: Acting CEO

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Ready to write your resignation letter?

Be polite in your resignation letter, no matter what your role, explain why you’re leaving, and be clear who you’re informing. Gratitude and support go a long way with employers during your departure, and the last thing you want to do is leave the company on a sour note – even if you’re leaving for unpleasant reasons.

By taking inspiration from these resignation letter samples and templates, you’ll protect your professional bridges and maintain your professional network as you embark on your next adventure.

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in October 2018 and has been updated for comprehensiveness.

Resignation Letter

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