Resignation Advice

Handing in your notice

Make the decision
- It is important that you have reached an absolute decision on your career move before you hand in your notice. If you still have any serious doubts, go back to your new company and ask more questions.

Terms of leaving
- Look at your current contract to check your notice period and familiarize yourself with any special conditions. If you are joining a competitor, your existing employer may ask you not to attend the office during your notice period. In this case, they remain duty-bound to pay your salary and full benefits until your official termination date. If you choose to ask to be released early however and they agree, they will only pay you to the agreed leaving date.

Write a letter
- Hand in a letter of resignation. Ensure it is properly dated and keep it very concise. Make sure your letter is polite and does not go into reasons why you are moving. Remember you still want a good reference and you never know - you may one day decide to go back so it is important to leave on good terms.

Be prepared for the ‘counter offer’
- Most employers find it easier to offer more to keep staff than to have to look for a new employee and it is highly likely that you will be offered more to stay. Suddenly, all sorts of doors may look open for you to stay where you are: more money, promotions and wonderful promises for the future.

Being made an attractive counter offer is instantly good for your ego, but you must take a number of things into consideration before making a decision:

  • You have only received a counter offer because you resigned. It is a purely reactive tactic from your employer and should make you wonder whether you need to resign every time you want to improve your situation. If your employer thought you were truly worthy, why didn’t they improve your situation anyway?
  • An increase in salary now will often restrict your next salary reviews.
  • Do your reasons for wanting to leave still exist? You may have a number of reasons – salary too low, no promotion in sight, don’t like your boss. You may be offered more money to stay, which can be tempting, but if you still have other issues outstanding, you’ll probably end up leaving anyway.
  • Despite what your employer is saying to you, they will probably now consider you a risk and may make contingency plans without your knowledge. You may not be seen as a true member of the team
  • The counter offer could simply be an interim tactic from your employer to bridge a gap whilst they look to replace you.


Much research and many surveys have been completed over the years to measure what happens to employees who accept counter offers. Only 6 out of 100 employees are still with their company after 12 months, and 2 important points become apparent:

  • Salary was hardly ever the prime motivator for resigning – more money didn’t ultimately change the true state of play
  • Things didn’t take long to return to the way they were before the resignation


Before accepting a counter offer, ask yourself why your employer has made the offer. There is a strong possibility
that the cons will outweigh the pros and you will realize that your decision to resign was right after all.

IT Recruitment Permanent
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