How to Create a Smooth Resignation Process


Whether you’ve just won the Powerball Lottery, you’re changing careers, or are headed on to your next big opportunity in accounting and finance, resigning with dignity and respect says a lot about your character. 

The most important thing you can do is create a smooth resignation process. 

3 Ways you can create a smooth resignation process

1. Make the resignation official. 

Give a verbal resignation announcement to your supervisor. Consider how this person – and your colleagues – will respond to the news. You’ll want to have a response ready for the questions you’ll be asked.  

Follow up with a written letter. Your recruiter will have samples of written resignation letters. Be sure to include your name, the date, the person to whom you’re resigning, a brief notice of employment resignation, and the closing, including your signature. If you’re leaving on a positive note, thank your boss and the company for their provided opportunities. Avoid negativity or complaints. 

State that your decision, although difficult, is final and that you hope they’ll respect your decision. 

2. Manage expectations. Questions are a normal part of this process. Your current employer may ask many questions about your future opportunities. Set your boundaries and stick to them. It’s okay to say politely,” I prefer not to discuss specifics; I hope you will honor my decision,” and leave it at that.

Your boss will react emotionally and analytically when you announce your resignation. They’ll have to find a way to keep or replace you.

You’ll probably be a little nervous, too. Your feelings are entirely normal.

3. Expect to receive a counter offer – financial or emotional. 

Throwing money at a problem is a quick fix. The higher salary you may be offered should include what it would cost to recruit and onboard your replacement as well as psychological factors such as the impact on the team. A counteroffer could also be emotional: you’re an integral part of the team, you’re needed for the next project, or your resignation comes as a surprise. 

The last-minute tasks you MUST complete

Your resignation will have an impact on those with whom you work. Be professional throughout your final days. Here’s how:

  • Train your replacement
  • Remain in your position until your replacement comes on board
  • Collaborate with colleagues, making sure they have access to your work files and professional calendar 
  • Prepare a thank you letter or leave behind a small gift.
  • Complete administration procedures such as your HR exit interview
  • Request reference letters or LinkedIn affirmations

Accounting, audits, and taxes aren’t going away in the financial industry. However, when you decide to leave your position in an accounting and finance firm, you need to make sure you’ve created a smooth resignation. Avoid venting, overreacting, destroying work, or slacking off. 

The chances are good that the people you leave behind at this job are the ones you’ll be networking with at your next job. Maintain positive relationships with the people you’re leaving behind, and they’ll remember you as an excellent employee and co-worker.

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