Although you may be raring to vent in your resignation letter, don’t. Years down the line, you may need to ask your soon-to-be-ex-employer for a favor, such as a reference for another job. You don’t want your last impression with the company to be that you ticked everyone off. All you need to include in a resignation letter is when you leaving and sign it.
The traditional time to submit a resignation letter is at least two weeks before your departure date. But sometimes that cannot be done. In these situations, it is especially important to be polite and refrain from any name-calling. A two-week resignation time period is usually not required in minimum wage, retail of fast-food service jobs. However, it does give a good impression because most employees in those fields just walk out after one shift and never come back.
Type It Up
Unlike a job interview thank you letter, a resignation letter does not need to be handwritten or on stationary. Email resignation letters are also considered acceptable, depending on the type of job you are in. For example, the head of a non-profit organization may use an email resignation letter because there are so many people to contact (and perhaps the press as well) that email is the only logical choice.
Another reason that you want to type it is so the words are completely legible. You don’t want any misunderstandings about when you are resigning.
Format: Like a Formal Letter
Even though you may not stick your resignation letter inside of an envelope, use a standard business letter format. Stick your company’s name, address and name of any immediate supervisor in the upper left hand corner. Stick your name, address and date in the right hand margin.
Below the right hand margin, skip a line, then have your salutation (“Dear (insert name here)”), followed by a colon. Slip another line and quietly state that you are leaving the company at such-and-such a date. Skip another line and write a brief paragraph about how much you enjoyed working at the company and wish them every success. Skip another line for closing (“Sincerely”), then skip two or three lines for your hand-written signature and then print your name.
Reason for Leaving Unnecessary to Include
Whether you should include the reason why you are resigning is a dicey issue. Ultimately, the decision to add the reason lies with you. If you’ve had a very good relationship with your employers, then tell them the reason. If you are leaving for health reasons, a pregnancy or a move, state that. These are universally acceptable reasons for vacating a job in the business world.
Do not get into any back-stabbing or finger-pointing about unhelpful fellow employees (even if they really deserve it.) Remember, you may need to ask this company for favors in the near future.