Handing In Your Resignation and Serving Notice
Have you made the right choice? Before deciding to resign from your current position and move to a new employer, you should weigh up as objectively as possible all the relevant factors: remuneration, working environment, location, travel demands, training and development opportunities, promotional prospects, and your future bosses.
Consider also what impact a job with the new company would have on your resume. Once you have received and accepted a formal written commitment from your new employer, you should serve notice immediately.
It is important to behave in a professional manner throughout the resignation process. Your character and your personal integrity should never be in question. Be positive; be co-operative; and avoid recriminations.
State that you are leaving the company and hand in your letter of resignation at the same time.
Be prepared for a reaction. If your employer presses you for reasons, give brief and positive answers. Don't argue or complain. Don't allow yourself to be deflected from your purpose or drawn into a protracted discussion.
Do everything possible to establish a friendly tone and leave a good impression. State that you are leaving because your new employment offers you opportunities for advancement. Your decision is the result of careful consideration.
Your written resignation should be concise and definite. Do not go into details or give your reasons for leaving. If you have any grievances, don't express them in the letter. Give no cause for animosity. Ask if there is anything you can do to ensure a smooth transition.
In the letter, state that you are leaving and when. Give as much notice as possible. Two weeks is generally acceptable, but check your contract or the company handbook.
I have decided to resign my position as (' - ..) at (company) effective (date) to take a position with (new employer). I greatly appreciate the opportunity that you and (the company) have given me to develop my skills and further my career.
I shall make every effort to ensure that the transition period goes smoothly for all concerned.
Counter offer. Your decision was carefully thought out, so stick to it. Changing your mind makes you appear indecisive and creates a negative impression. It calls into question your long-term commitment and loyalty to your current employer.
During the period of notice, carry out your duties in a diligent and professional manner. Assure your boss that you will complete any outstanding task. If this is not possible, leave detailed instructions for your replacement. Check that all your records are in order. Inform your colleagues that you are leaving. When discussing things with them, resist the temptation to make disparaging comments about your present job or boast about your new one. Do your best to leave on good terms with everybody.
Exit Interview. Many companies expect their employees to attend an exit interview with the Human Resources Manager. If requested to do so, co-operate fully. Conduct yourself in a professional manner. Say only positive things about your employer and the company. Focus on accomplishments or learning experiences you had while employed there. Remember that anything you say is likely to be recorded in the personnel profile.
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About the Author
Gerard McLoughlin, Director of Assignments Plus Communications, has contributed career-related articles to hundreds of recruitment companies, websites and publications throughout the world, including: USA Today, JobBankUSA.com, US-Recruiters.com, Jobs1.co.uk, Nurse-Recruiter.com, and Recruitireland.com.