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Resignation process

Congratulations !

We are delighted that you have landed a new job. This represents a major personal achievement and heralds the beginning of an exciting new phase in your life. You should be feeling proud of yourself and satisfied that you have successfully taken control over your own future. 

However, before you can make the leap forward and start your exciting new job there is the matter of resigning from your current employer. Doing it the wrong way can lead to bad feeling, a diminished reputation and possibly problems with a reference. Whereas, the correct resignation etiquette will enhance your standing and contribute to your personal and career development.

At MW Appointments we recognise that every individual is unique and each person will view the resignation process differently. We are conscious that some will view it with a degree of trepidation, but please remember your consultant at MW Appointments is always on hand to help and guide you through your resignation. We will provide you with all the support and practical assistance you need.

In conjunction with the support of your consultant we have produced the following notes and guidance which we hope will be of use.

As a general rule of thumb, whatever the professional or personal relationship with your manager, the best approach to resigning is always to keep it short, simple & diplomatic.

The Resignation Letter

Your consultant will happily assist you to draft and produce your resignation letter. If you prefer to write your own letter, we have included 4 templates and offer the following suggestions:

The letter should be brief and to the point, stating the following:

  • your intention to resign
  • Refer to the notice period you need to give.
  • Thanking the company for the experience gained while in their employment (if appropriate).

Never include your reasons and motivations for leaving in your resignation letter. There is the danger of misunderstanding and misinterpretation which might stay on your HR file and you will not have the opportunity to give qualifications and explanations.

Resignation Meeting

PREPARATION - COMPOSURE – SIMPLICITY - TACT

  • Request a private meeting with your manager.
  • Make every effort not to discuss your intentions with colleagues prior to this meeting. In this way you will maintain control of the situation, which may not be the case if your manager gets wind of something second-hand from a third-party.

During the Resignation Meeting.

No matter how strongly you feel, it is never a good strategy to angrily complain about the company in general or to vigorously criticise specific individuals. It is important to maintain your dignity and composure in order to avoid any risk of leaving on bad terms, increasing stress and potentially creating problems for the future. Your resignation meeting should not be seen as an opportunity to aggressively attack every aspect of your current company. 

If you do feel passionately about any particular issue – lack of training or poor management – try to be positive and diplomatic. Offering practical / helpful solutions for the future will leave a better impression than merely reeling off a long list of whinges.

Your resignation may come as a complete surprise to your boss and they may even become quite emotional. Be prepared and keep your composure.

Remember, that seeking a new position does not make you disloyal. Looking to improve your personal circumstances and your working conditions does not mean you are betraying your boss or the company.

Some bosses may play on feelings of guilt and accuse you of “letting the team down” by emphasising that it is the worst time imaginable to leave. Remember to consider the bigger picture. No matter how valuable a team member you are, no one is indispensable. Your departure may be temporarily inconvenient, but your department will survive and the company will carry on without you.   

Prepare beforehand; know exactly what you want to say and how you want to say it.

  • Remain focused. The sole purpose of the meeting is to respectfully explain your decision to resign.
  • You need to politely emphasize to your manager that your decision is firm & final and that you are committed to your new employer.
  • Be careful not to be lured into any discussions other than your resignation.
  • Discuss how your employer wishes to prepare for your departure and the practical cross-over of workload and transfer of responsibilities.

Remember, if your relationship with your manager is such that you will feel uncomfortable or pressurised, do not hesitate to utilise HR, if you will find this easier.

The Counter Offer

Do not be surprised if your company make a counter offer to entice you to stay. Research shows that counter offers are on the increase. Many companies realise that in the short term it is cheaper & less disruptive for them to appease exiting staff with increased salary offers, titles or different roles, rather than hire someone new. 
However, if you prepare properly and remain in control by being firm but polite you are unlikely to be phased by any counter offer.

Keep in mind that national survey reports consistently show that between, 50% - 80% of employees who accept a counter-offer are back in the job market within 36 weeks. Of course, the job offer they turned down is long gone.

While a counter offer may at first appear tempting and even flattering, there are potential pitfalls you need to be aware of. Ask yourself these questions:

  • Will your loyalty always be in question?
  • If there are redundancies in the future, will you be first to go?
  • Are you merely receiving next years raise or bonus early?
  • Are you simply being paid more to cope with the same problems?
  • Is the counter-offer just a tactic, by the company, to avoid a short-term inconvenience?
  • Are the company willing to confirm in writing all the promises in the counter-offer, with specific dates, amounts etc?
  • Do any proposed improvements, fundamentally and completely eliminate all the reasons you initially sought a new job?
  • Why are improved conditions only being offered after your resignation?

Remember, the marketplace is small and with company mergers and acquisitions, it is possible that you could find yourself back with a previous employer, manager or colleague. Prepare properly, remain focused on starting your new job and act diplomatically. By resigning with the minimum of fuss and commotion the lasting impression you leave behind is positive and your professional & personal reputation is enhanced.

PREPARATION - COMPOSURE – SIMPLICITY - TACT

TEMPLATE 1

Dear

I would like to resign my position as and intend to leave on .

I would like to take this opportunity to say that making this decision has been difficult as working at has been a positive experience and one for which I am grateful.  I have gained much here and have enjoyed working with you and my other colleagues.

However, I am excited about my new position I am undertaking and may decision is irrecoverable as I am now legally bound by handing signed a contract.

I am conscious of the need to provide support to the department until my departure and I shall give my full commitment until then.

I wish you and every success in the future and thank you for the opportunities I have been given during my time here.

Yours sincerely

TEMPLATE 2

Dear

As required by my contract of employment, I hereby give you  week’s notice of my intention to leave my position as .

I wish both you and every good fortune and I would like to thank you for having me as part of your team.

Yours sincerely,

TEMPLATE 3

Dear

As required by my contract of employment, I hereby give you  week’s notice of my intention to leave my position as .

I have decided that it is time to move on and I have accepted a position elsewhere.  This was not an easy decision and took a lot of consideration.  However, I am confident that my new role will help me to move towards some of the goals I have for my career.

I understand that my notice period is weeks but I would like to join my new employer at the earliest date.  Therefore, I would like to request that you waive this notice period and relieve me of my duties immediately.  Please be assured that I will do all I can to assist in the smooth transfer of my responsibilities before leaving.

I wish both you and every good fortune and I would like to thank you for having me as part of your team.

Yours sincerely,

TEMPLATE 4

Dear

As required by my contract of employment, I hereby give you  week’s notice of my intention to leave my position as .

I have decided that it is time to move on and I have accepted a position elsewhere.  This was not an easy decision and took a lot of consideration.  However, I am confident that my new role will help me to move towards some of the goals I have for my career.

Please be assured that I will do all I can to assist in the smooth transfer of my responsibilities before leaving.

I wish both you and every good fortune and I would like to thank you for having me as part of your team.

Yours sincerely,

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