How Long to Serve a Notice Period When Leaving a Job

How Long to Serve a Notice Period When Leaving a Job?

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What is the ideal notice period to provide?

It is common when resigning from a company to hand in your manager or supervisor with a letter of resignation. When you hand over your letter with an appropriate notice period, allowing time for your supervisor to arrange the workflow and tasks before leaving is a sign of respect. In this article, we will discuss what is a notice period and how you can calculate the right duration of notice.

What’s a notice period?

A notice period is the time during which you continue working from the day that you give in your resignation letter until your final day at work. Notice periods can be different by length depending on various factors such as the industry, the role of a worker, employment type and duration in particular organization. Normally, it takes at least two weeks or more to give notices.

What is the rationale behind giving a notice period?

Recruitment may take a long time, especially in specialized sectors. For instance, your human resource department will have to handle with your notice of resignation, develop a job specification for filling the position and get authorization for hiring recruitment budget. This application process usually involves several checks along interdepartmental lines before the application can be live. All of this takes time. In addition to being respectful of the company’s time, here are several reasons to provide a notice period:

  1. To foster a professional connection with your employer: Regardless of whether you’re there for just a few months or even years, it’s beneficial to leave on mutually pleasant terms. It is possible that while applying in future jobs, you may need references from the present employer. Giving a thoughtful notification may make your ex-employer more prone to give favorable remarks regarding the time you spent with them.
  2. To ensure a smooth transition and uninterrupted workflow: Giving your employer advance notice will give any team members who worked with you the opportunity to plan for your departure. You will allow them adequate time to arrange for your replacement or cover any vacancies in the workflow.

Employment contract terms and conditions: Perhaps, at the beginning of your position, you signed a contract or agreed to terms of employment. Typically, the terms and conditions of employment specify how long your notice period is going to be. It is often dependent on the number of years you had been working with the organization.

Determining the duration of your notice period

When determining the length of your notice, it’s important to consider various factors that can guide your decision. These factors play a significant role in ensuring the right balance and effectiveness of your notice.

  1. Employment contract terms
  2. The length of service
  3. Employment status full-time, part-time or casual employee?
  4. Involve in a substantial position or project?
  5. Quitting your job at the end of the financial year?
  6. Why are you leaving and what do you want to achieve?

1. Employment contract terms

If you have signed a contract, most likely it will contain information on the notice period that is required from you. It would be wise to read your contract of employment before deciding if resigning is a good move. This will allow you to plan your subsequent moves well and to have a smooth transition.

2. The length of service

If you’ve been with your company less than a year, it has become standard courtesy to notify the employer at least one week in advance. However, if at all possible, think about giving a two-weeks notice even if you have been just with your company for a few months because this would give more time to your employer to find someone who can fill in that position.

If you’ve been with the company for one to three years, it is simply good manners to offer at least a 1-month notice. Thirdly, Give a 2-month notice if you were at the company for three to five years and 3 months if you were with the company for more than five years.

However, if you are aware that your company’s hiring process takes along time or the position you hold is difficult to fill then it naturally becomes ok to give a 2 to 3 months notice even though you have been at the company less than five years.

3. Employment status full-time, part-time or casual employee?

Depending on your employment, you may not be required to give a notice period at all. For example, unless specified in your contract, casual employees can end their employment without notice. Full-time and part-time employees should on the other hand provide a notice period either based on their tenure at their organisation or what is stated in their contract.

However, even as a casual employee, it’s always a good idea to give some kind of notice to your employer, otherwise you risk the chance of burning any bridges between you and your manager, colleagues and the company.

4. Involve in a substantial position or project?

Alternatively, the length of your notice period can vary according to the tasks pending completion. Consider the time it takes to train a new member or hand unfinished work over to another colleague. If you have a large project underway or some sort of rare expertise, include this when deciding how long a notice period you should provide.

5. Quitting your job at the end of the financial year?

Many companies structure their marketing and operations plan by the financial year end to complete ongoing projects and set new goals at the beginning of that year. It is a good idea to consider the dynamics of the financial year calendar when announcing your decision to leave before you tender your resignation.

6. Why are you leaving and what do you want to achieve?

Determine whether you are resigning because of another job that has already been secured, to start as a freelancer or because you want to take some time off work. The notice period is determined by your career goals. For example, if you are already assured of another job then it is very unlikely to give extra notice period to your employer. On the other hand, in case you are resigning to take some time off, the position you may be at would allow for a greater notice period.

How Long to Serve a Notice Period When Leaving a Job

How to convey your resignation notice effectively

In order to resign from a company in a professional setting, schedule an appointment with the purpose of submitting your formal resignation letter to your manager. It is good idea to hand in both your letter and copies of it digitally as the HR department would want to store your resignation notice.

To create a professional resignation letter, adhere to these steps:

  1. Keep the letter clear and short.
  2. State the reasons why you are leaving and state your last working day.
  3. Stick to stating the good reasons of leaving and keep your relationship with your employer positive.
  4. Express thanks for the time spent with the company and offer to help with any necessary transitions.

Resignation Letter Sample

[Supervisor Name]

[Place of Business]

[Business Address]


Dear [Supervisor Name],

I am resigning from my position as [position] at [Business Name], effective [last day of work]. I’ve appreciated the opportunity to contribute to the [business department] and have enjoyed my professional growth here.

I am committed to a smooth transition and willing to assist in training my successor before [final day of work]. Thank you for your understanding as I pursue [reason for leaving].

Best wishes for the company’s continued success.

Sincerely, [Your Name]

Why you are here?

If you are on the lookout for a resignation letter or even considering switching jobs at some point, it’s always wise to have a better idea of what your value is in terms of a job and Employment elsewhere. FastLane Group is a recruitment and headhunting firm that specializes in assisting and empowering professionals such as you. We cordially invite you to send us your resume and start a thrilling new career adventure with us. You may search for existing open positions here.

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