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How to Write a Resignation Letter With Notice Period: Tips and Guidelines

Updated on April 2, 2024ProfessionalsWriting Tips

Resigning from a job can be exciting. You might be moving on to a better opportunity, pursuing further education, or undertaking a lifelong dream of starting your own company. While your energy may be focused on the future, it’s important to manage your exit from your current company gracefully. You want to leave on good terms, particularly if you would like to receive a positive reference from your manager or colleagues in the future.

Part of leaving on good terms includes finishing up your own work and helping your employer with the transition of work after your departure. This is made easier if you provide as long a period as possible between the time you officially tell your employer you’re resigning and your last day of employment—in other words, offer a long notice period. Here’s how to write a resignation letter with a notice period to do just that.

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What is a resignation letter with a notice period?

A resignation letter with a notice period is an official statement of your intent to leave your company after a specified length of time. A notice period provides you with enough time to prepare your offboarding plan, and gives your colleagues and manager sufficient time to prepare for your departure by divvying up your responsibilities.

Notice periods are sometimes established in the contract you signed at the beginning of your employment. Dig up your contract and take a look to ensure you’re not out of compliance with your resignation letter. It’s important not to renege on the notice period you signed up for, even if unintentionally. If you do so, your manager could refuse to give you a positive reference. In a worst-case scenario, it could lead to the company suing you for breach of contract.

Typical notice period length

Workplaces usually expect you to give a few weeks’ notice when you resign—as little as one week or as many as four weeks. The standard is around two weeks’ notice.

This, of course, varies by company and by role. Typically, the more senior you are in the company, the longer the notice period. For executives, there are fewer people (if any at all) in the company who could step in and replace them once they leave, and a company might have to search for someone externally to fill the role, which could take several weeks or months. An expected notice period for executives could be up to three months or more.

Crafting your resignation letter with a notice period

The format of your resignation letter with a notice period should be a formal business letter. Because it’s an official document, it should contain the points listed below. You should maintain a professional tone throughout and can use Grammarly to check for clarity and conciseness, as well as correct grammar, punctuation, and tone.

It is not necessary to go into the exact reason for your resignation, but it is considerate to say that you want to leave the company well prepared to handle the tasks you were responsible for. Offering a notice period to finish your own tasks and help transfer your work onto your colleagues will minimize the disruption of your resignation.

Elements to be sure to include in this letter are:

  • The date
  • Name of the company
  • Name of the person you’re addressing the letter to (your direct manager)
  • A formal declaration of your intent to resign
  • Your intended last date of employment
  • Appreciation for the company and the opportunity to work there
  • Offer to help with the transition
  • Your name

You can use Grammarly’s AI resignation letter generator to help you write the first draft of your resignation letter. Simply enter in your letter’s recipient and a few details about your situation, and get a draft of a letter you can further refine.

Example resignation letter with a notice period

Whether you’re writing a resignation letter with one month’s notice or a resignation letter with two weeks’ notice, you can use the below resignation letter sample as a starting point for your own.

[Today’s Date]

[Name of Company]

[Address of Company]

Dear [Manager’s Name],

After careful consideration, I would like to inform you of my decision to resign from my position as [Your Title] at [Company Name]. I would like to stay on board for a notice period that would allow me to sufficiently transfer my responsibilities. As such, my final day of employment will be [Last Working Day, usually two weeks or more after the date of the letter].

I understand that my decision may cause some disruption for [Company Name], and I am committed to minimizing that potential disruption. I am prepared, in the next [number of weeks until last working day], to document my projects, share my working files, and work closely with you to ensure a smooth handoff of my tasks and responsibilities. If there’s anything else I can do to help assist the company during this transition, please do not hesitate to let me know.

I have learned a lot and have enjoyed my time working at [Company Name]. I want to thank you for the opportunity to work here and for all the support and guidance along the way. I wish [Company Name], my colleagues, and you continued success and all the best in the future. I hope to stay in touch.

Thank you for your understanding.

Sincerely,

[Your Name]

Tips for your resignation letter with a notice period

You should write your resignation letter with consideration for the colleagues and work you are leaving behind. You are providing a notice period, after all, to give yourself time to help them out during the remainder of your time with the company. Here are some practical tips on writing your resignation letter, as well as advice on crafting a warm and friendly resignation letter that will help you strike that tone.

Make sure it’s a letter format

The format of your resignation with a notice period should be a letter. That means it should include the person it’s addressed to, the date, the company, and your signature. If you have personal letterhead, your resignation letter can be written on that.

Take a formal but warm tone

A resignation letter is a legal document that your company may have specific rules about, but it is also your goodbye note to the company and your colleagues. Keep your tone formal throughout. You may share that you understand that your departure may generate stress for your colleagues who have to pick up your responsibilities going forward and that you want to work, during your notice period, to minimize that stress.

Proofread your letter

It would be embarrassing if your letter is ridden with typos and grammatical mistakes. Proofread your letter before you send it. You can even ask a friend or a trusted colleague to look it over to have another pair of eyes on it. Use a writing assistant like Grammarly to ensure that your letter is grammatically correct, uses correct punctuation, and is written concisely.

Find the right channel of communication

Sometimes company policies dictate a specific communication channel to file your resignation letter. Ask your direct manager or an HR representative, or look through the company handbook to see if there is one. For some companies, an emailed letter is fine, while others prefer a formatted letter on personal letterhead filed into a specific system.

See if there’s a set notice period

Sometimes contracts at the start of your employment delineate how long of a notice period you must give if you resign. Review yours carefully to ensure that you’re not out of compliance with what you give in your resignation letter. If you leave earlier than the notice period that was specified in your contract, you risk departing on bad terms or the company potentially suing you for breach of contract.

Give as much of a notice period as you can

If there is no set notice period at your company, it’s considerate to provide as long of a notice period as you can so that your colleagues don’t have to suddenly pick up the work that you were doing, which could cause them stress. To gauge what would be an acceptable notice period at your company, see how long other people at your level are giving as their notice period, or ask your direct manager what they would prefer. The typical period is two weeks.

End on a positive note

The last few sentences of your letter may be the last words from you that a manager or colleague will read, and it could serve as a farewell message to colleagues. It’s important to sound positive, so your time there will remain positive in their memories. You could end by saying that you wish the company continued success going forward, that you hope to stay in touch, or that you’ll be using the company’s product or cheering your ex-colleagues on from the sidelines. Ending your resignation letter this way communicates to your manager and colleagues that you are parting on a friendly and hopeful note.

FAQs on resignation letters with a notice period

How do I write a resignation letter with a notice period?

To write a resignation letter with a notice period, address it to your direct manager. State that you are resigning and when your last day will be. Thank the company for all its support during your tenure there and offer to help with the transition. Ensure it is in a formal letter format.

What are some tips for writing a professional resignation letter with a notice period?

When writing a resignation letter with a notice period, keep the copy concise and the tone warm and thoughtful. You can say deciding to leave was a difficult decision, that you wish the company continued success, and include a farewell message to your colleagues. Be clear about when your last day at the company will be.

How can I use AI to help with writing a resignation letter with a notice period?

You can use Grammarly’s AI resignation letter generator to help write a resignation letter. Just enter a few key details and get a well-formatted, professional resignation letter in seconds.

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