How To Resign and Maintain a Great Relationship with Your Employer: Our Top Tips


Resignations do not have to be carried out in a dramatic, fiery way, where an employee storms out of the office after becoming fed up with their employer. In your best interests for future work opportunities and your career progression path, you should try and maintain a good relationship with your former employer after handing in your resignation. Read on to find out more in our guide to top tips on resigning and maintaining a great relationship with your employer.

Remain Cordial and Polite in Your Resignation

Make sure you try and address your employer respectfully in your resignation letter. Being overly critical and blasting the organization when resigning may lead to you not receiving a good reference in spite of all the excellent work you may have done in the past. So, try and avoid leaving your previous employer with a sour, bitter taste in their mouth. For future career progression purposes, you want your previous employer to provide you with a glowing reference and mention your personal achievements at work, and all the great contributions you made to the company in your time there. Manners truly cost nothing, stay polite and dignified in your work resignation.

Keep Your Official Resignation Letter Brief

You should never use an official resignation letter (or ‘formal resignation letter’) as an opportunity to slam your employer and angrily tell them about your frustrations with your job role. Take any emotions out of the picture and write your resignation in a formal tone to briefly inform your employer that you are leaving and when your last day of work will be. Bear in mind that there may be a minimum notice period in the contract you signed when joining the company, and you may have to honor this notice period. Leave on good terms and keep your official resignation letter relevant, punchy, short and sweet.

Compose a Thoughtful Resignation Email

In 2022, many things at work require a digital copy as well as a hard paper copy, and a work resignation letter is no exception to this.

Resigning from your job certainly isn’t something that you should ever take lightly, particularly if you don’t have another job role lined up that you can jump straight into. Weigh up the pros and cons before informing your employer of your resignation.

A resignation email to your employer should contain a formal letter of resignation as an attachment. Try to write the resignation letter in a thoughtful way, thanking your employer and mentioning the valuable things you have learned during your time at the company. To learn more, take a look at Placement’s guide to resignation emails and how to write one.

But remember that it is your official letter of resignation, and not the resignation email, that has legal implications and serves as concrete official proof of your resignation to your employer.

Leave on Good Terms with Your Manager

Your manager will have been responsible for evaluating your performance and assessing your overall contribution to the company as an employee. Your manager may have even guided you through your initiation and introductory phase after you first joined the company as a new recruit, and they may be the person who knows the most about your strengths at work.

If you want to receive an impressive reference to take with you when applying for new roles in the future, it’s definitely a bright idea to try and leave on good terms with your manager. Their thoughts on your capabilities in the workplace and the assets you bring as an employee may prove to be absolutely essential in finding your next job. Hopefully, their reference will be full of praise and admiration for your work.

Stay in Touch with Former Colleagues

Work can be a place where strong friendships and relationships are born. Over the years at work, you may have managed to forge strong bonds and friendships with your colleagues. Perhaps some of your best friends who you see on a regular basis are current or former colleagues. Just because you resign from a role does not mean that these friendships have to come to an abrupt halt.

Networking and having connections in the right circles are always essential in business. And later in your career, the connections you have made through colleagues in your previous jobs may come in useful. For example, suppose you have gone into entrepreneurship and decided to create a new app through your own start-up company, and you are still good friends with the IT expert from your former company. In that case, you may want to chat with them over the phone or go for a coffee to hear some of their specialist advice.

So, it is a good idea to try and leave on good terms and resign in a way that allows you to maintain a great relationship with your employer and former colleagues.

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