Share on FacebookShare on TwitterShare on LinkedinShare via emailShare via Facebook Messenger

How to Write a Resignation Letter for a Career Change

Updated on April 2, 2024ProfessionalsWriting Tips

Gone are the days when employees worked one job for forty years and then retired. Nowadays, career changes are expected over the course of a long working life. Employees pivot, try new roles, or go back to school to learn a new trade all the time. Some even leave the workforce to pursue long-held dreams, like enrolling in culinary school or becoming a flight attendant.

If you’re leaving your job because you’re changing your career, you will have to inform your employer by writing a resignation letter. Read on for why it’s important to write an amicable and compliant resignation letter and for tips on how to do that.

Work smarter with Grammarly
The AI writing partner for anyone with work to do

Understanding resignation letters for a career change

A resignation letter for a career change is an official letter to your manager and company stating your intention to leave your job because you’re embarking on a new line of work. It’s important for companies to have this document as a legal record of the timeline of your departure.

Resignation letters are also an important way for employees to leave their roles on a polite and friendly note, which is important in order to secure a positive reference in the future. Even if you’re exiting the industry, it’s always important to have former employers who can vouch for your character and work ethic.

How far in advance to notify employer

You should give your employer ample notice of your intention to resign due to a career change. Companies usually expect at least two weeks’ notice, and more time is usually appreciated if your timeline allows for it. The more senior you are at a company, the more notice you should provide so you can pass on managerial responsibilities and institutional knowledge. Check your employment contract to see if it includes a specific notice mandate. Some executives are bound by their contract to give at least three or six months notice before they resign, for example. Not heeding the notice period in your contract may sour the goodwill between you and your employer or make you vulnerable to legal action.

During this notice period, you and your employer will prepare for your transition away from the team. You will also need to finish as much of the work you’re currently doing and prepare your offboarding documents during this time.

Crafting your letter of resignation due to career change

Your resignation letter for a career change should be written in the form of an official business letter. It should be concise and written in a professional tone—an AI-powered writing partner like Grammarly can help you check for these elements. Your resignation letter should include:

  • The date
  • Name of the company
  • Name of the person you’re addressing the letter to (your immediate manager)
  • A formal statement of your intent to resign
  • Your intended last day of work
  • Appreciation for the company and the opportunities you’ve had there
  • An offer to help with the transition
  • Your name

Your letter can be as long as you’d like, as long as you address the points above. In other words, you don’t need to go into detail about what your career change is or what you’ll be doing after you leave the company. However, if you have a good relationship with your manager and colleagues, you may choose to disclose a few details in the interest of fostering a good relationship.

Example resignation letter due to a career change

To get you started, we prompted Grammarly to write an example of a resignation letter due to a career change using generative AI. Grammarly’s AI resignation letter generator immediately drafted a letter, and then we asked it to make the letter shorter and sound more empathetic. The result below is for you to work from, or you can try giving Grammarly your own prompt with more personal information and guidance on the tone you’d like to strike.


[Your Name]

[Your Address]

[City, State, Zip Code]

[Email Address]

[Phone Number]

[Today’s Date]


[Recipient’s Name]

[Company Name]

[Company Address]

[City, State, Zip Code]


Dear [Recipient’s Name],

I am writing to let you know that I have decided to resign from my position as [Your Position] at [Company Name], effective [Last Working Day, with Date].

I am grateful for the opportunities that I have had while being a part of the [Company Name] team and appreciate the support and guidance that you and my colleagues have provided me with during my time here.

I will ensure a smooth transition during my remaining time and do everything that I can to complete all outstanding work and assist in any way possible, including training my successor.

Thank you for the valuable experience that I have gained here. I wish you and the team all the best for the future.


[Your Name]

Tips for your resignation letter for a career change

A resignation letter for a career change does not have to disclose anything beyond the basic points, such as your last day of employment. However, if it feels authentic to you, your letter could also serve as a farewell message to colleagues. Below are some tips to help you craft a resignation letter that’s compliant with company requirements and also allows you to showcase your gratitude.

Use proper letter formatting

Make sure that your resignation letter includes the name of your direct manager, the name of your company, and the date and is signed with your name. If you have your own personal letterhead, write your resignation letter on that.

Choose the appropriate channel of communication

Your company may have a preferred communication channel for submitting your resignation letter—either through email or an internal portal, for example. Ask your manager or an HR representative if there’s a protocol for filing these letters and be sure to follow it.

Write in a formal and respectful tone

Your resignation letter is one of the last pieces of business writing you will submit at this workplace. As such, it should be written in a professional and formal tone. Grammarly’s tone detection feature can help you ensure you’re hitting the right note.

Proofread your letter

You don’t want to submit any piece of writing at work that has typos, and your resignation letter shouldn’t be any different. When proofreading your letter, you should also ensure it doesn’t ramble or go off on tangents. Grammarly can help you proofread your resignation letter for clarity, concision, and tone, as well as for correct grammar and punctuation.

Do not criticize the job or industry

Given you are leaving a job to make a career change, you may be tempted to disclose what made you feel frustrated or less-than-satisfied about your current job or industry. Do not do that in your resignation letter. You will likely need a positive reference from your former boss, no matter what industry you’re pivoting into, and insinuating that you disliked working with them for whatever reason does nothing to help you secure that.

Share how you intend to help with the transition

Listing some of the actions you will take to facilitate a transition of responsibilities shows your employer that you have thought about the situation and that you are committed to helping them. Your offboarding may involve crafting a handoff memo that has links to documents and files needed to do your job. It can also include training others who will be taking over parts of your role. Ask your manager what else you could help with during the transition.

FAQs on resignation letter due to career change

How should I communicate my resignation due to a career change to my employer?

You should communicate your resignation through a short resignation letter. This letter should include the last day of your employment, the name of your immediate boss and company, and an offer to assist the company with the transition of your tasks and responsibilities. It does not need to include details about your career change.

How can I ensure a smooth transition when resigning due to a career change?

You can ensure a smooth transition by providing a few weeks’ notice and assisting your boss with transferring your projects and responsibilities to your colleagues. You should also attempt to complete any projects you are currently in the middle of working on.

How can I use AI to help with writing a resignation letter for career change?

You can use Grammarly’s resignation letter generator to generate a draft or outline of your letter. Then let Grammarly’s strategic writing feedback on tone, conciseness, clarity, and more help you revise your letter. Grammarly’s built-in proofreading can ensure your final draft is polished.

Your writing, at its best.
Works on all your favorite websites
iPhone and iPad KeyboardAndroid KeyboardChrome BrowserSafari BrowserFirefox BrowserEdge BrowserWindows OSMicrosoft Office
Related Articles
Writing, grammar, and communication tips for your inbox.