How to Write a Retirement Letter With Tips and Examples

Updated 20 January 2023

A retirement letter is formal notice employees send to their employer to notify them of their plans to retire. This letter typically gives their employer the details of their departure from their role and helps them make necessary plans to fill the position. Understanding what type of information to include in a retirement letter can help you write a professional letter to announce your retirement to your employer. In this article, we discuss what a retirement letter is, share steps on how to write one, list some retirement letter writing tips and provide an example letter for your review.

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What is a retirement letter?

A retirement letter is a letter you can submit to your employer to formally announce your retirement and your intention to resign from your position. Unlike other resignation letters, you're not informing your employer that you're moving into a new position, but rather writing to let them know that you're ending your working career. Sending a letter to advise of your retirement can be a great opportunity to end your career positively.

Sending a letter to announce your upcoming retirement can be a good way to thank your employer, provide details on when you plan to leave and advise of any other important information you may want them to know. This might include, for example, if you plan to take annual leave prior to resigning or if you wish to have your annual leave balance paid out in cash. This type of information can help your employer plan for your departure effectively.


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How to write a retirement letter

The steps below can help you understand how to write a retirement letter:

1. Decide who you're sending it to

When advising of your retirement plans, it's important that you notify your direct manager of your intention to resign from your position. It's also helpful to notify the human resources department so they can make plans to fill your position and organise payment of any outstanding leave balances with your final payment. It can be a good idea to address your letter to your direct manager and also send a copy to the human resources representative for their attention.

Related: How to Address a Letter

2. Include your retirement date

When notifying your employer about your plans to retire, it's important you tell them what date you intend to leave the company. You might choose to schedule a meeting with your manager to work out a date that suits you both. If you do this, you can reference this date in your letter. Alternatively, you may opt to check your employment contract to verify your expected notice period length. Regardless of what date you decide, it's important you note it in your letter to give your employer a clear indication of when you plan to leave.

Related: 9 Essential Things to Do on Your Last Day of Work

3. Express gratitude for your experience

You can help end your career positively by expressing your gratitude and thanks to your employer for the experiences you've had with the company. This may include successful projects you've contributed to or company milestones you've reached. For example, you can say something like, I wish to extend my thanks to you and the sales team for making the past ten years with Tex Co really enjoyable and fulfilling.

Related: How to Say 'Thank You for Your Support' (With Examples)

4. Offer to help train your replacement

When retiring, you might choose to offer your time to train your replacement. You may decide to do this if, for example, you have a special skill set or are leaving midway through a project. Offering to help train your replacement can help you feel satisfied knowing that your replacement can undertake your role successfully in your absence. If you decide to do this, it can be great information to include in your retirement letter.

Related: How to Become a Consultant in 6 Steps

5. Provide your contact details

Including your personal contact details in your retirement letter can help your employer contact you after you leave regarding any leave payouts or tax forms they may require you to complete. You may choose to add your personal email address, for example. This information is likely to be on your employee file, but it can still be beneficial to confirm it in your letter.

6. Explain what you plan to do with your accrued leave

If you have outstanding annual or long service leave, it's a good idea to mention this in your letter and advise what you plan to do with it before you leave. You may decide to use your leave before you resign or you may prefer it paid out in cash. By advising of your plans in your letter, you can assist human resources in paying you correctly.

Related: How to End a Letter

Tips for writing a professional and respectful retirement letter

The following tips may be helpful when writing a retirement letter:

  • Keep it positive. Although you're resigning from your position, notifying your employer about your retirement plans can be a positive experience. It can be an excellent opportunity to reflect on your time with the company and acknowledge your accomplishments.

  • Make it personal. Adding something to your letter to personalise it can help you connect with your employer. You can consider referring to your retirement plans and what you aim to achieve with your time away from work.

  • Express gratitude. When writing your letter to notify your employer of your retirement, you may wish to express your gratitude and thanks to them for the time you've worked for the company and the experiences you've had. This can be a good way to ensure you end your career in the best way possible.

  • Acknowledge your accomplishments. If you've worked with your employer for a long time, there may be some projects you want to acknowledge to give value to the time you've spent working for them. You can mention your greatest accomplishment or the most memorable project you've worked on in your letter.

Related: How to Write a Formal Letter (With Example)

Retirement letter template

Below, you can find a template to guide you when writing a retirement letter:

[Manager's name]
[Manager's title]
[Company name]
[Company address]
[Company city, state and postcode]

Dear [Manager's name],

[You can use this paragraph to announce your upcoming retirement and when you wish for your last day at work to be.]

[In this paragraph you can express your gratitude and acknowledge your development and achievements.]

[Here, you might choose to notify your employer of your intention to help to make the transition following your retirement as smooth as possible.]

[In the final paragraph you can discuss any unpaid vacation time you have accrued and what you would like the company to do with it.]

[Formal closing]

[Your name]
[Your personal email address or contact number]

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Retirement letter example

Below, you can find an example of a retirement letter:

Joe Barnes
Marketing Manager
Buzz Marketing
34 Pier Road
Perth, WA, 4586

Dear Joe,

Please accept this letter as a formal notification of my upcoming retirement. I intend for my final day at Buzz Marketing to be 13 October 2022.

I want to take this opportunity to thank you for the opportunities you have provided me with during my time with the company. I have learned a lot and I'm proud of the accomplishments I have made in my time. My greatest achievement is definitely completing the marketing campaign for Movie Co. It was great to collaborate with such a dynamic team to complete that project in such a short time.

I'm happy to assist with training my replacement and I may also be available to consult on an ad hoc basis in the future.

Upon review of my leave balance, I plan to take the two weeks of annual leave I currently have outstanding prior to my departure date at a time that's convenient for the department.

Thank you again for your support.

Best regards

Stephanie King
0155 555 78

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