If you’re planning to leave your current job, it’s considered common courtesy to give your employer two weeks’ notice ahead of time. The idea here is that you want to allow your employer time to prepare for your departure. They’ll need to decide if they want to hire someone new to backfill your position; come up with a plan to cover your work duties in the meantime and conduct any necessary training.

It might seem like a double standard — you probably wouldn’t get advance notice if your company decided to lay you off or fire you. If you’re feeling cynical, just remember: It’s always a good idea not to burn bridges. You never know if you might need a recommendation from your employer in the future, or if your paths will cross again.

Here are our tips and considerations for finding your next job with a job board like ZipRecruiter, ending your employment on good terms, plus a template you can use for your two-week notice letter.

Why Is It Important to Give Two Weeks Notice?

If your next job is already lined up, your new employer may not care how or if you’ve tendered your resignation letter to your current employer. But what happens when your time at your new job comes to an end?

Maintaining a good relationship with current and past employers is important because you’ll likely need them as references at some point. Someone somewhere along the line may inquire about any job you’ve worked.

Generally, employers are only asked to verify your employment. But if you left them in a bind, your current employer might be inclined to let inquiring employers know how you left things. And that could be a red flag.

Simply put: Making a habit of tendering a two-week notice letter speaks to your character. It’s proof that you won’t suddenly leave others in a bind if things get rocky for you. And if you do have to leave, you’ll give them plenty of time to come up with a plan.

When Should You Give a Two-Week Notice Letter?

Whenever you’re leaving your job on your terms, the professional thing to do is to give a two-week notice letter to your employer.

You can’t be expected to give two weeks’ notice of resignation if you’re being fired. And future employers will likely understand if you couldn’t give notice due to a health issue or family emergency that pulled you away indefinitely.

And if you’re being laid off, the onus isn’t on you to notify your employer. If they value you, they should try to give you plenty of notice that they’re downsizing and you’ll be laid off soon.

How Should You Deliver Your Two-Week Notice Letter?

For most companies, email is the standard means of delivering a two-week notice letter. If your company hasn’t assigned your team or department a company email address, you’ll need to deliver your notice in print (whether typed or handwritten).

While an email or print letter makes your resignation official, most people would prefer that you break the news face-to-face. Consider doing your boss or manager the courtesy of notifying them of your resignation in person, even if you don’t have the best relationship with them.

Are There Any Benefits for Giving More Than a Two Weeks’ Notice Period?

Two weeks is the standard amount of time employees are generally expected to afford their employers. But if you have a great relationship with your employer and want to show goodwill, giving them even more notice can be helpful.

So if you want to give three weeks’ notice, four weeks’ notice or even a notice period of a month or two, your current and future employers will probably respect that.

However, be sure your next job is secure before giving any amount of notice, even if that means having to stay at your current position a little longer than you had anticipated. It’s always possible your current employer will say thanks, but no thanks, and end your employment at the time of your resignation. If you’re on good terms, however, this is unlikely. Use your best judgment, and keep your job and financial security top priority.

Basic Two-Week Notice Letter Template

[Subject line]

[Date]

[Greeting; recipient’s name]

[Notice of resignation and final day]

[Gratitude for employment]

[Volunteer assistance in transition]

[Signature]

Examples of Two-Week Notice Letters

The letter isn’t supposed to be complex. It’s standard practice to keep them fairly to the point.

This example of a resignation letter keeps it short, factual and cordial. For email resignations, be sure to give a clear subject line, simply stating “Notice of Resignation” or “Two-Weeks’ Notice.”

And for hard copy resignation letters, it’s fine to type it up and print it out. Be sure to print and sign your name by hand at the bottom of your notice.

Electronic Resignation Letter

Subject line: Notice of Resignation

Aug. 1, 2024

Dear [recipient’s name],

Today, I’m notifying you of my intent to resign from my role as [job title] for [company name]. My final day with the company will be [date of resignation].

I’d like to sincerely thank you for giving me an opportunity here at [company name]. I appreciate everyone’s teamwork and collaboration.

Please let me know how I can help make the transition period easier for the department. I am happy to assist in any way I can.

Sincerely,

[Your name]

Print Resignation Letter

Aug. 1, 2024

Dear [recipient’s name],

I’m writing to notify you of my intent to resign from my role as [job title] for [company name]. My final day with the company will be [date of resignation].

I’d like to sincerely thank you for giving me an opportunity here at [company name]. I appreciate everyone’s teamwork and collaboration.

Please let me know how I can help make the transition period easier for the department. I’m willing to ease the transition in any way I can.

Sincerely,

[Print your name]

[Sign your name]

A man types on his computer at his home desk.
Getty Images

Tips for Writing a Two-Week Notice Letter

These are some tips for putting it all together to help you kick off a graceful and professional exit from your company, no matter the circumstances.

Keep it Simple

Use the two-week notice templates and just fill in the blanks with the facts of your departure. It doesn’t have to take much of your time.

Make it Human

Try to convey a little humanity. Think of it as your olive branch. You’ll go in peace, and they won’t harbor any resentment toward you.

Make it Personal

Use your boss, manager or supervisor’s name in your greeting. If you only use their title, your resignation letter could come off as nothing more than a formality. You certainly don’t want to format it as a “to whom it may concern” letter.

Be Clear

Open your resignation letter by clearly stating your intent to resign, along with the date you’ll officially resign. You don’t need to write more than a sentence or two.

Be Gracious

Try to be gracious in your next paragraph, even if you can’t wait to leave. Consider thanking your employer for things like training, flexibility, professionalism or collaboration.

Lend a Hand

Offer to assist in the transition period. Some employers may ask you to leave tips for the next person, document certain processes, make recommendations for a suitable replacement or even serve as a consultant for a while even after your formal resignation.

Say It Out Loud

Give a verbal two-weeks’ notice along with the official resignation in your letter. Depending on your relationship with your boss, you can do this in whatever order feels most appropriate..

Finding Your Next Job Opportunity

Not quite ready to tender your two weeks notice resignation letter?

If you’re ready to leave your current position, but you’re not financially ready to end your employment contract yet, consider freshening up your resume and browsing an online job board.

An Efficient Job Search

Searching for new employment can feel like a job in and of itself, especially when you already have a job. ZipRecruiter’s One-Click Apply feature and AI-based virtual recruiter make it easy to search for a job during what little free time you find.

Many employers that post jobs on ZipRecruiter enable the One-Click Apply feature. That means once you’ve set up your free profile, you can apply instantly to any job that interests you.

See something attractive? Click to apply, and your resume packet and profile will go straight to the hiring manager or recruiter who posted the job.

Let a Virtual Recruiter Find Your Next Job

Meet “Phil,” ZipRecruiter’s virtual recruiter, built on artificial intelligence.

While you work your day job or are busy with other responsibilities, Phil will work to find the right job opportunities for you, based on your qualifications and job preferences. Phil will even nudge employers to take a look at your candidacy whenever you’re a good match for a job.

It’s as easy as creating a free account and uploading your resume. Once you sign-up at ZipRecruiter, you can begin browsing jobs right away — there are millions posted on the job board.





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