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Handing in your Notice: What to Say When Leaving a Job

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If you’ve made the decision to leave your job, there are a few final steps you need to follow to make sure the process runs smoothly. Whether you feel relief or you’re sad to go, there are standard procedures to follow which can make leaving that bit easier. Whatever you do, always keep in mind that you should exit on good terms. Here are some tips to help make sure you do:

Put your resignation in writing

Quitting your job isn’t as simple as turning off your laptop and never checking your emails again. In Ireland, you may be in breach of your employment contract if you leave without giving notice and a formal resignation letter. You should also check your notice period - this can vary from company to company.

A resignation letter doesn’t need to be detailed, aim to keep it short and snappy. These are the things you need to include:

  • Clearly state what date you will be leaving

  • The official name of your position

  • The last date you will be at work

  • Gratitude to your employer for hiring you

  • Offer to train your replacement or leave a handover

  • Well wishes for the future of the company

  • Your contact information

Resignation Letter Example

Date of resignation

Dear ‘Managers Name’,

Please accept this letter as notice of my resignation as a ‘Role Name’ for ‘Company You Work For’. My last day will be ‘Date you Will Finish’.

I greatly appreciate the opportunities I’ve had during my time working with you and I’ve genuinely enjoyed the two years at ‘Company Name’. I will take the skills I learned with me throughout my career.

During the last few weeks, I intend to do everything necessary to ensure a smooth transition and to provide a handover for my replacement. Please let me know if there is anything specific you need help with during this time. Thanks again.

Kind Regards,

(insert signature)

How to tell your manager you’re resigning

Once you have your resignation letter written it is important to tell your boss that you’re leaving in person (where possible.) If you can't meet them in person a video call is another good option.

Keep what you say short and sweet and hand them your resignation letter or email a scanned copy after your meeting to them. Even if you’re angry or unhappy, try to focus on the positives.

There is no need at this stage to talk about the negative, instead, thank your boss for the opportunities they have given you and focus on the next step in your career. If you have any grievances, ask for an exit interview. This will be your time to give honest feedback.

It's also important to prepare yourself for a counter offer. When the temptation of an increase in salary and the “promises” of promotion are put in front of you it is very easy to have your head turned by a current employer. This is when you need to be strong and remind yourself why you were leaving in the first place.

After chatting to your manager sit down with your colleagues and let them know that you’ll be leaving. Again, stay positive - you never know when you might come across or even work with them again.

Ask about references

Towards the end of your notice period, discuss references with your manager, line manager and the HR department. `

Sorting this out straight away gives your employer time to properly write a reference, and your skills will be fresh in their mind.

Even if you have your next job lined up and are 100% happy with your decision, good references are the best recommendation you can have for a new employer and are good to have on file longer term.

A final tip for leaving a job gracefully

Damaging any professional relationships on your way out the door will likely hurt you down the road. People will remember you by your last day if it's negative, tarnishing all the positives you added to the business. Keep this in mind after you hand in your letter. As mentioned before you never know who you may meet again in the future.

If you are interested in a new job opportunity you can view all live roles in almost every sector in Ireland on our job board or if you need to brush up on your CV you can download our free CV Guide.