How to Professionally Resign From Your Job

The time has come; you have accepted another job opportunity, and you think you are ready to move on. Congratulations! This is an exciting moment in your career path. Although no job search is an easy feat, now comes the hard part: putting in your resignation. So, if you are ready to quit your job, what are the best steps you should take to do so gracefully? Here’s how to professionally resign from your job.

Make sure this is the right decision

Before you put in your notice, it’s crucial that you really think about this decision. Create a pros and cons list of leaving your current position and make sure this is the right decision before you resign from your job. It’s also essential to have a conversation with your family, friends, mentor, or anyone else you trust to help you make this decision. Although this is your career, this decision can affect those around you, and your inner circle can help provide some valuable insight into this critical decision. Once you have determined that quitting is the right move, it’s time to write your resignation letter.

Write a resignation letter

Before telling your boss that you are quitting, draft your resignation letter. Your letter should be short, sweet, and professional. Address the letter to your supervisor, reiterate when your last day is, show your gratitude, and address your willingness to help during this transition. You can state your reasons for leaving but keep them brief. Your resignation letter is to officially notify your HR department in writing. You can share any feedback or grievances during an exit interview. Never bash your employer or manager in your letter.

Here is a helpful guide for drafting the perfect resignation letter.

Prepare for a possible counteroffer

So, you have decided to move on to another opportunity. Your resignation letter is ready to submit, and you are prepared to tell your boss. Stop! Before you hand in your letter, you must consider one more thing. If your current employer counteroffers, will you accept it? This is a tricky situation. If you are leaving your job to chase a more lucrative offer, it may be appealing to accept a counteroffer. However, if there are other underlying reasons why you are leaving, it may be best to decline the counter. Think about this long and hard before you broach this topic with your supervisor. Employers may counteroffer to keep you right where you’re at. Today’s market is competitive, and employers are more likely to counter than ever before. But when in doubt, go with your gut.

Tell your supervisor face-to-face (if possible)

Here’s the challenging part. Once you have all the above items ironed out, it’s time to put in your notice. If you are working on-site with your boss, tell them in person. If you are working remotely, schedule a video call to let them know you are leaving. Quitting your job is a huge challenge for many job seekers, but letting your supervisor know face-to-face is the appropriate way to go about it.

Make your last few days count

After you officially resign from your job, make the last few days count. Whether you are doing a traditional two-week notice or it’s just a couple of days, make the most out of them. This time is likely challenging for your team and current employer, so do what you can to streamline this transition. After all, your final days with the company are how they will remember you. Be as helpful as possible, and you can ensure you won’t burn any bridges with your current coworkers.

Is it Okay to Back Out of a Job Offer for Another?

The Great Resignation is in full force and appears to be the theme throughout the year as the economy continues to recover. The Labor Department reported last week that the economy added nearly 1 million new jobs in July. Additionally, the latest JOLTS Report revealed that a record-setting 10.1 million jobs are currently available. As a result, people are quitting their jobs in waves as they gain more confidence and optimism in their prospects. As these job seekers start to go through the interviewing process with multiple employers, it’s not uncommon to receive more than one job offer. So, is it okay to back out of an offer to pursue another after accepting the offer?

It’s more common than you might think

A recent LinkedIn post from resume coach Robynn Storey went viral with a story about one of her candidates. Storey’s candidate received a job offer that she happily accepted. However, shortly afterward, she received another offer. This offer was more lucrative and offered more opportunities. This candidate was conflicted about backing out of the first offer but ultimately turned it down for the second one.

Almost every employer has had candidates back out of a job offer to pursue another opportunity. And with so many jobs available, this is happening more than you might think. So, this raises the question if it’s acceptable to back out of an offer for another. The short answer is yes, but you must do it professionally and timely.

How to back out of a job offer for another

If you decided to back out of a job offer, there are a few tips to ensure you do it professionally so it doesn’t burn any bridges and leave the employer hanging out to dry.

First of all, if you are backing out of an offer, you want to let the company know immediately. The longer you wait to rescind your offer, the harder it will be for both you and the employer. As soon as you accept your new offer and have a start day ironed out, write a formal letter to the hiring manager with your withdrawal. Keep the letter short and sweet. There is no need to go into great detail about why you are pulling out. Just simply explain that you, unfortunately, are pulling your candidacy because you accepted another position. In your letter, make sure you thank the hiring manager for their time and show your appreciation for the opportunity.

Before you fire of that letter, call the hiring manager and do it over the phone, if possible. It may be more challenging to do it in a one-on-one conversation, but it’s the professional and courteous thing to do. Once you break the news, you can send the letter to the hiring manager to officially pull yourself from the position.

What if they present a counteroffer?

If you contact the employer and try to back out of the offer, they may counter your other offer. In today’s competitive market, employers are resorting to clever tactics to attract new candidates, so a counteroffer is very well possible. Before you contact the hiring manager to withdraw from your offer, understand why you are backing out. Is it simply money? Or did the second offer that came in have more opportunities, better benefits, or other perks that pique your interest? If it’s merely just compensation, then have a bottom line in your mind that you would be willing to accept to move forward with the first offer. However, if it’s more than just the money, there may be no point in entertaining a counteroffer.

Keep in mind that this prospective employer may not be thrilled to negotiate with you after you accepted the offer, but it is possible in this unprecedented market.

Check out our other career advice

If you turn down a job offer professionally and timely, you can hopefully salvage your relationship with that employer. If you are interested in reviewing more job hunting or interviewing resources, take a look at our blog!