Handing in your notice? How can you prepare.

You have accepted a job offer, now all you have to do is hand in your notice!

Handing in your notice can be a daunting task. This is especially true if you have been with your employer for a long time and/or feel loyalty towards your managers and colleagues. This can make the act of letting your employer know you are leaving stressful. Like any situation, stress can be lessened by being prepared. Knowing what to expect, and having a plan of what to do if it doesn’t go quite the way you thought it would is essential.

When to give notice?

You should not give notice at your current place of work until you have written confirmation of your offer. This should include a ‘contract of employment’, ‘job description’, and ‘offer letter’ so that you know exactly what job you are taking.

How to give notice?

You want to leave on good terms. This is best achieved by delivering your notice in person. It is likely that your contract of employment will stipulate that your notice needs to be given in writing, so you will want to have a letter on hand to leave with your line manager once you have spoken to them.

What should you say / your letter say?

When delivering bad news it is best to keep it short and to the point. As a minimum your letter should include:

  1. That you are resigning from your position.
  2. What your last working day will be.

You may also want to include that you have enjoyed your time working there. Thank them for being supportive, or to wish them all the best in the future. You can visit out candidate support page for a free download of a template resignation letter.

What should you expect when handing in your notice?

Depending on why you are leaving, the response you get from your employer could be very different. This may change depending on the situation this will leave the company in, and your position within the company.

Good Managers will deal with the situation without making an issue of it. In most cases, you will work your notice period, and your colleagues will wish you all the best for the future. This is unfortunately not always the case. If you are going to work for a direct competitor, do not be surprised if you are put onto ‘gardening leave’. If leaving is going to put the company under some pressure, or the company is already understaffed, then do not be surprised if your employer puts some of that pressure back onto you by trying to convince you to extend your notice period, and persuade you to stay by making a counteroffer.

Should you consider a counteroffer?

Counteroffers are increasing, as companies fear losing (and not being able to replace) good workers. You may believe all of your career aspirations can be achieved by staying in the same company. If this is the case, a counteroffers is not a bad thing. But y

ou should also consider why you wanted to leave in the first place and if these issues will be resolved if you stay?

Numerous surveys, as well as a mountain of anecdotal evidence within the recruitment industry suggest that the majority of counteroffers that are accepted do not resolve employee’s issues and that the vast majority of employees will leave (or be looking to leave) their employer within 6-12 months of accepting the offer.