How to Write a Retirement Letter

Life begins at retirement. – Anonymous

Retirement is a new beginning; a new phase and threshold of your life where you can catch up on all that you missed. It’s time to say goodbye to the work which you loved for years, and penning down all those emotions in a letter is not an easy task. Writing a letter of retirement is an experience that starts off with mixed emotions. You are glad that you are retiring, which means more time with your spouse and grandchildren, but it also means that you will never work in the place which you helped grow in the last two decades, and you won’t see those faces you have been used to seeing every day.

Yes, you will get to do so many of those things you didn’t think you’d ever have the time to do, but at the same time, you are going to be left with so much time in your hands. Mixed emotions right? And what makes it more difficult is the fact that you don’t know what to write, where to start and what format to use. Here are a few tips that you must follow before writing a retirement letter.

Writing Tips

  • For the retirement letter, you can go both ways, that is the formal or informal way, depending upon your relation with the supervisors in the organization.
  • Remember that while you are retiring, it is not the time to get even, set the record straight or bring up past issues. Leave all this aside and just remember the good times and the things you learned during your tenure.
  • Do not talk about any particular person in your letter, and be as cordial as possible.
  • Proper notice should be given to the company; six weeks is a good notice period. This notice can be given verbally, but has to be followed by a written letter.
  • Give your letter to the human resources department and discuss all paperwork and retirement formalities with them.
  • Remember that in no case should your retirement letter have innuendos, puns or jokes. Do not leave others with a bad taste in their mouth.

Apart from tips, there are certain rules that you must follow while writing a formal letter.

Rules

  • Clear: When conveying a message through a letter, you should be very clear about the thoughts that you would like to pen down.
  • Short: Formal letters should always be short. Avoid long sentences and unnecessary explanations.
  • Simple: The formal letters should always be clear and to the point. Long sentences or use of some heavy vocabularies might not be well-perceived by the receiver.

Writing a Retirement Letter

Employee Info In this, you give your complete contact details, which include:
  • Your Name – It should start with your full name.
  • Your Address – It should be your current address.
  • Your Telephone Number – This should be necessarily given, as some colleagues of yours might like to be in touch with you.
  • Your Email Address – This is also an important information to mention, as it will be easier for your colleagues to convey their message to you.
Date The date should be the same as the date on which you submit the letter.
Employer Info This is where you give all details of the employer like:
  • Name of the Employer/Superior
  • Superior’s title and designation
  • Name of the Company
  • Address of the Company
  • Contact Details
  • City, State and Zip code of the company
Subject Here, mention the purpose of the letter in one line.
Salutation Include a suitable salutation like Dear Mr./Ms./Mrs. (supervisor’s name)
First Paragraph In this paragraph, state the reason for writing the letter, and include that you are retiring from your position on a given date.
Second Paragraph In this paragraph, mention your term with the company. Then talk about the great opportunity you had working for the company. Be gracious, irrespective of what kind of experience you had in the organization. In this paragraph, take an opportunity to mention your experience with the company, management, and colleagues. This is where you thank your superiors, colleagues and supervisors for their help and support. Keep it short and simple.
Third Paragraph In this paragraph you must offer help in training the person who will be replacing you or any other assistance during your transition process.
Fourth Paragraph This is optional information which should be included only if you want to continue working part-time or on a contractual basis. This is where you specify contact details regarding the same.
Closing End the letter with any of these:
  • Sincerely,
  • Respectfully yours,
  • With great respect and regard,

Leave some space – at least two blank lines – between the closing, and your name.

Signing off This is essential and should include:
  • Your Signature
  • Your Typed Name
  • Your Designation
CC This is specified after the closing, and includes the names of the individuals to whom you want to share a copy with. For multiple names, make sure you add names with “cc”, each on a new line.

Sample Letter

Joe Frank

221, Children’s Park

Annie Mayer Road

California – 5543333

Jul 20, 2012

Karl Nash

CEO,

Oata Limited

211, Adam Street

Livingstone Park

California – 5545556

Subject: Retirement Letter

Dear Mr. Karl Nash,

In this letter, I intend to announce my formal retirement from Oata Limited as Product Manager, effective from Aug 15, 2012.

I have been employed in this Company for a period of 15 years, and had a wonderful experience working here. I would like to take the opportunity to thank the company, the management, and definitely my colleagues for the immense support and help, without which it would have been difficult to work.

While I look forward to leading a retired man’s life, I will definitely miss working in this company with my wonderful colleagues and management. I will love to assist, if I can be of any help, during this transition period.

Sincerely,

(Your Signature)

Joe Frank

Take a print of the letter for your manager. Take photocopies of the same for the number of employees you have Cc’d, and one as a personal copy.

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