Retirement letters-believe it or not, there are some general rules of thumb about how to write them, when to turn them in, etc. While the rules are not hard and fast, they are a general guideline.
First, give your employer plenty of warning-the absolute minimum being six weeks. If you work in the white collar world, such as in high finance or academia, trying to find a replacement for you quickly will be difficult at best. Six weeks at the minimum will give the employer time to at least start trying to find someone to take your place, and try to train them somewhat.
While the employer may very well be aware of your retirement that is fast approaching, or may have even reminded you of it, you still need to turn it in. It is professional courtesy for an employer, and as you will find out later on, something that may help you in the long run.
When writing the letter, stating the date that you are going to retire is an absolute must so that there is no confusion. This also helps out with disbursal of any benefits that you are due from that company-401K, pensions and whatever else you may have.
Take the time to thank your employer for the years of employment-even if you hated it there, at least you had a job. Include any supervisors and coworkers for things that they have done during your career-and tell them what they meant to you.
Make the effort to ensure that the changeover is a painless as possible for your former company. Give your word that you will take the time to meet with your replacement, and whatever else may be needed to help ease the transition.
Should you want to offer up any part-time consulting services, this would be the perfect time to make your feelings known about that. It is not unusual for retirees to keep working part time, usually as an independent contractor. Hey, it is a possible way to have some type of retirement income, and you would actually know what you were doing.
While some letters go on for what seems ever and ever, you must remember to cover the very basics. You may also send retirement letters to clients as well as coworkers, if you so desire.
Truthfully, retirement letters are a good way to open up new opportunities, and close out your old career. Hopefully, you can begin a new career, too, as a result of the new opportunities because of your retirement letter. Look towards the future in your retirement letter-and offer that thought, along with well wishes, to everyone that you thank, as well.
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