Although the Great Resignation has come to an end, the Job Openings and Labor Turnover for September 2023 by the Bureau of Labor Statistics announced that the total number of employee departures in the United States is an astonishing 5.5 million. As they state, departures include quits, layoffs, and discharges, and other separations.
It is the company’s grave responsibility to handle employee departures with much dedication since a respectful offboarding nurtures a healthy company culture. Communicating a departure is the number one step in any successful offboarding procedure, but how do you do it the right way?
In today’s article, we will be going over everything you need to know when crafting an employee leaving announcement, including:
- How to announce an employee is leaving the company,
- Examples of 11 different departure scenarios and what your message should entail, and
- What NOT to say in an announcement of employee departure.
Let’s dive right in!
Table of Contents
Although the loss of a team member can be unsettling news to pass down to your staff, knowing how to properly announce it can ease the process. Providing clear information and expressing empathy and gratitude for the departing employee can foster a sense of unity among your team.
You should effectively communicate any changes within your organization, which is especially important if you are working in a remote setting. This will help warrant transparency and trust while maintaining a cohesive work environment.
With that being said, some things will guarantee smooth and successful communication. These are the few important tips you need to apply when drafting your employee leaving announcement:
- Choose the right communication channel,
- Select a suitable audience,
- Be direct and precise,
- Incorporate details where appropriate,
- State the date of departure,
- Talk about the next steps,
- Invite employees to farewell event,
- Show acknowledgement and gratitude, and
- Sign off.
Once you put these tips into practice, you will notice your departure announcements causing much less confusion or concern among employees.
Let’s take a more detailed look at each tip below.
First and foremost, you should choose where to make the announcement. Deciding on the proper communication channel will give you a good head start.
If you are working in a smaller company, setting up an in-person meeting shouldn’t be too much of a hassle, but usually, it is much more complicated to execute than a written message. Also, you don’t want to attract too much attention to the departing employee and make them uncomfortable.
Even if you decide to hold a short meeting, it is always a good idea to have the employee leaving announcement in writing. This shows formality and alerts everyone that needs to be informed about the changes.
Determining an adequate communication channel depends on your company size and your everyday communication practice. You don’t want to steer far away from your usual procedure.
If email is the primary choice for your company’s business communication, stick to that. But, if you use a team communication platform, such as Pumble, you will certainly find it completely suitable to inform about an employee’s departure.
Analyze and determine who may find the employee leaving announcement relevant. Not everyone should always be informed about everything.
Within a big company, it is usually not necessary for everyone to know when an employee they have never worked with before is leaving the company. Odds are they have never met the person and this information can be distracting and irrelevant.
If the leaving employee is well-known amongst all the workers, or if you work for a small company, you should send the announcement to everyone on staff. However, if they have only worked with part of the company, it is best to keep the departure announcement within the relevant team or department.
There is no reason to beat around the bush and add fluff to the beginning of your message. Instead, get straight to the point, keeping it open and concise.
Start with an incisive subject line if you are writing an email, and avoid confusion among employees by clearly stating who is leaving the company.
Delaying the main point and adding unnecessary commentary before it will not help your attempt to minimize the negative feelings or shock of your employees. Be clear with your intentions at the very beginning and add more details later on in the message.
People are naturally curious and like to know how the employee’s departure came about. You can share the reason behind it if you have the leaving employee’s consent.
This usually occurs when the employee has resigned because of retirement, to further their education, or moved on to a different company. In those cases, sharing the reason can help steer other employees away from coming up with their own theories and possibly causing havoc among each other.
Co-Founder and Chief HR Officer of Enhancv.com, Volen Vulkov, agrees that a timely announcement of an employee exit is essential for company harmony.
“The most crucial reason for announcing an employee’s departure is to control the narrative within the company, allowing transparency and maintaining trust within the team. An unaddressed departure may lead to speculation, misinformation, and ultimately harm the organizational culture.”
Although transparency is appreciated, in a case where the employee is departing because of a termination, it might be best to not include many details.
In another effort to be transparent and direct, you should always include the leaving employee’s last day with the company. Specify if the last day at work and the last day with the company are different, like in cases where employees use their paid time off before departure.
This gives clarity to the other colleagues and allows them to determine the proper time for their goodbyes. It also helps you manage team expectations and uphold productivity.
Another crucial part of any employee leaving announcement is sharing structure plans for the work once the leaving employee is no longer a part of the company. The other employees, especially those within the leaving employee’s team, might be concerned about taking on new tasks to substitute for one less person on board.
Make sure you inform everyone relevant about the work dynamic moving forward. Communicate the company’s strategy for filling the position or distribution of responsibilities.
With over 20 years of experience as an HR professional, Keca Ward is aware of the importance of effective restructuring for a painless adaptation in the case of a departure.
“The primary purpose of formally announcing an employee’s departure is to facilitate a smooth transition within the team. This involves reorganizing task responsibilities and helping team members prepare both practically and emotionally for the forthcoming absence of their colleague.”
Many companies organize farewell events for departing employees. This is especially common in cases when employees leave because of retirement.
This gesture is the perfect opportunity to make the leaving employee feel special and appreciated, and it gives them a chance to engage with their soon-to-be former coworkers.
If the company is organizing a farewell event, ensure that you use the employee leaving announcement to invite the other employees and provide them with all the necessary information about the event.
Next, your announcement should include a show of appreciation for the leaving employee. A positive parting is of utmost importance when an employee has resigned. For that reason, you should make known that their service at the company is valued.
So, make an effort to incorporate a few honest and heartfelt comments about their work and dedication, and thank them for their time. Moreover, you can mention specific achievements and contributions, as well as professional virtues.
Invite the rest of the staff to join you in sharing their best wishes and good luck for the leaving employee.
💡 Pumble Pro Tip
Learn about how to address your colleagues if you are the one leaving the company, or if you need to send a farewell message to a departing coworker:
Lastly, finish the announcement with an official sign-off including your full name and title. This is considered an important formality.
Ensure that it includes your contact information in case anyone has follow-up questions or concerns. Or, even better, include your full official signature for a proper informative message ending.
After learning the most important points of writing a successful employee leaving announcement, let’s look over some examples to see them applied in practice in different communication situations at work.
We have an extended list of various scenarios in which you would need to share an employee departure announcement, including:
- Formal template announcing an employee leaving,
- Informal template announcing an employee leaving,
- Template announcing an employee leaving on short notice,
- Template announcing an employee leaving due to being laid off,
- Template announcing an employee leaving due to gross misconduct,
- Template announcing an employee leaving for an external job,
- Template announcing an employee leaving for an internal job,
- Template announcing an employee leaving to retire,
- Template announcing the manager of the team is leaving,
- Template announcing to a client that an employee is leaving, and
- Template announcing an employee temporarily leaving for maternity leave.
Let’s look over each one of them.
Subject: Resignation Announcement – Farewell to Nicholas Green
I hope this message finds you well. I am announcing the departure of our colleague, Nicholas Green, from our team.
After 4 years of devoted service, Nicholas has decided to explore new opportunities beyond Boyd Finance. His last day with us will be on November 24th.
Throughout his time here, Nicholas played a vital role in successfully managing our top clients’ investment portfolios and exceeding revenue targets, constantly enhancing our team’s triumphs. His presence will be greatly missed.
We understand that Nicholas’ departure may raise questions regarding the transition of his responsibilities. Rest assured, we are working on a strategy to ensure seamless handover and uninterrupted workflow. We plan on hiring a replacement in the upcoming weeks.
In the interim, Ruben Floyd will be taking on the majority of Nicholas’ tasks. Any inquiries regarding Nicholas’ projects can be directed to him.
We will be organizing a farewell gathering for Nicholas on November 24th at the Duchin Lounge starting at 8 p.m.
Please join me in extending our sincere appreciation to Nicholas for his dedication and service to our team and in wishing him all the success in his future endeavors.
Should you have any questions or require additional information regarding this transition, please do not hesitate to contact me.
(123) 456 789
The tone of voice used when writing an announcement of an employee leaving mostly depends on the cause for departure. However, you can never go wrong with a formal approach in corporate communication.
For instance, you do not want to come across as not taking the matter seriously enough. When in doubt, always opt for a more formal email equipped with all the necessary information.
💡 Pumble Pro Tip
While many companies are adopting a more informal approach to their operations, it is still very important and relevant to maintain a high standard of formality in a professional setting. To learn more about how to improve your formal communication at work, read our blog post on the topic:
Subject: Goodbye to Our Teammate, Emily Baker
I am sharing with you the bittersweet announcement that Emily Baker is leaving Soul Productions effective July 12th. Emily has been with us from the very start and we are sad to see her go.
After over 3 years as part of our team, she has decided to further her education by enrolling in a Ph.D. program at UCLA.
Until we can find someone to fill her shoes, please direct all department questions and concerns to Chad Gibbs after July 12th.
This Friday, July 7th we will be celebrating Emily with a farewell party at Jack’s Pub starting at 7 p.m. Let’s all come together to show our gratitude and wish her lots of success and happiness in the future. She has been an integral part of our organization and has contributed to many of our company’s successes, such as being an executive producer on three out of our top five films. I hope you will join me in toasting her.
Chief People Officer
An informal tone in emails often includes using everyday language, easygoing greetings, and overall sounds a lot friendlier. The contents, however, are not any less important than those of a formal email.
For example, retirement or maternity leave can be announced informally. But if a worker is terminated due to gross misconduct, it calls for a more formal style of expression.
Subject: Jane Combs is leaving the company
Dear AB Digital staff,
This is to let you know that Jane Combs has resigned from her position as Graphic Designer. Her last day of employment will be at the end of this week, October 6th.
In her 2 years at AB Digital, Jane has served as a pivotal team member, showcasing her expertise through various successful projects. Some of them include serving as lead graphic designer for our top two clients, Estrella and Bucket Toys.
We understand that this short-notice departure may come as a surprise to most of you. Rest assured that we have set a detailed plan to restructure Jane’s tasks until we find a suitable replacement. Lynn Orbin will be taking on the majority of obligations for the time being, given that she has spent the longest working alongside Jane. Feel free to reach out to her with all of your questions and concerns going forward.
Please accompany me in wishing Jane the best of luck in her future adventures, as well as thanking her for her time at AB Digital.
Chief Human Resources Officer
Short-notice employee departures can sometimes be tricky to announce. Very often the news will come as a shock to the rest of the team, which requires a larger effort to settle all concerns.
In these situations especially, you must provide sufficient information regarding the future plans for the role and division of responsibilities.
Subject: Farewell to Ken Haynes
I am writing to inform you about the departure of Ken Haynes from Warner Communications. Unfortunately, due to the recent changes in our organization, we have had to make the difficult decision of letting go of some of our colleagues, and Ken is among those affected by these unfortunate circumstances. With this we conclude our layoffs for the time being.
His last day with the company will be September 15th, and his last working day will be September 8th.
In the upcoming month, we will be restructuring the Media Relations Specialist position. In the meantime, Ken will be transferring crucial responsibilities to Anna Burns.
During his time with Warner Communications, Ken has been a valuable asset to our shared success and has made significant contributions, including excellent representation of our clients in all relevant media outlets. We are incredibly grateful for his dedication.
Please join me in expressing our genuine gratitude for Ken and wishing him the very best in his future pursuits.
As many as 136,000 employees have been laid off in the United States in the first three months of 2023, states Forbes’ 2023 Layoff Tracker. Although those numbers have been somewhat balanced out with the significant amount of new jobs and a slight drop in the unemployment rate, layoffs are continuing to be a great cause for concern among workers in many industries.
Assuming you have properly prepared your staff for possible upcoming changes within the organization, announcing this type of termination should always be done formally concerning the departing employees.
In a case where several employees are being dismissed at the same time, ensure you acknowledge all of them individually in your announcement. This thoughtfulness can be especially helpful in such trying situations.
Subject: Tim Sanford Departure Announcement
Dear Team Allen & Partners,
I regret to inform you that Tim Sanford is departing Allen & Partners, effective immediately. Tim has been terminated from his position due to behaviors that violated the company’s values.
This decision was made after careful consideration and due process. We take such instances very seriously and expect all workers to adhere to our company’s policies and standards with the highest levels of professionalism.
We understand this may come as a surprise to you and might raise questions and concerns. We assure you that we have taken all the necessary steps to ensure Allen & Partners remains a safe environment for our workers. As always, we encourage all employees to report any concerns or incidents of misconduct to human resources so they can be properly investigated.
Also, we have made efforts for a smooth transition in the absence of Tim. We aim to fill this position as soon as possible. In the meantime, all main responsibilities will be transferred to June Wallace.
We appreciate your understanding during this sensitive time.
Please reach out to me if you have any questions or concerns.
Chief Human Resources Officer
Allen & Partners
Gross misconduct is defined as a deliberate act or omission that substantially differs from the company’s standards, policies, and values. Some examples include sexual harassment, theft, violence, and drug or alcohol abuse.
Given that this is a grave matter, the employee leaving announcement should be structured using strictly a formal tone and major discreeteness. Make sure to communicate that your company does not tolerate this kind of behavior and remind your staff that they are always encouraged to report any actions they deem inappropriate.
Subject: Resignation Announcement for Ashley Rogers
I am writing to let you know that Ashley Rogers has decided to move to an opportunity outside of Springtime Marketing. Her last working day will be November 17th.
We are currently in the process of hiring for her role, as Senior Copywriter. You can utilize the internal job board to apply or make a referral. Meanwhile, Isaac Reed and Ben Douglas will be taking over the majority of the tasks and responsibilities. Please refer to them with any questions or concerns.
During her time with the company, Ashley has exhibited great dedication and commitment to her role. She has made significant contributions, including developing copy strategies for our biggest client and increasing their organic traffic by 50%.
We have organized a farewell event in her honor that will take place on November 17th at 7 p.m. at the Clubhouse Cafe. Let me know if you will be able to attend by replying to this email.
Please join me in thanking Ashley for all her hard work and wishing her success in her next role.
Employees come and go and their new adventures should always be congratulated. When writing a resignation announcement to staff, you are free to incorporate any announcing style you see fit but always include all important information.
Nevertheless, reducing turnover and increasing the chances of employee returns is a major goal for influential leaders. A Harvard Business Review article shows that 28% of “new hires” were boomerang hires who had resigned within the last 36 months. This increases the importance of a positive employee departure and separating on good terms.
Subject: Internal Transfer Announcement for Charlie Tucker
I am thrilled to announce that Charlie Tucker will be moving to our headquarters in Nashville as Chief Security Officer.
He has been a part of IT Aid for over five years and has achieved many great things, such as developing and maintaining intrusion detection and prevention systems. Charlie will now be contributing his experience and knowledge to overseeing all security vulnerabilities.
In the upcoming weeks, we will be looking to hire their replacement as a Security Engineer. In the meantime, their main tasks and responsibilities will be taken over by Maddison James. Please feel free to contact her with any work-related concerns.
If you have any questions regarding this transition, please don’t hesitate to reach out to Betty from our HR department or me.
Please join me in congratulating Charlie and wishing him the best of luck!
Human Resources Manager
Another great cause for celebration is an employee promotion. An informal or semi-formal tone of voice would be the most appropriate when announcing the transfer of a colleague to a higher position or different department within the company.
💡 Pumble Pro Tip
You can learn more about how to craft an effective promotion announcement in the following thorough blog post:
Subject: Celebrating Sean Gomez’s Retirement
Dear Regal Motors staff,
It is with a bittersweet feeling that I am writing to inform you that after 12 years at Regal Motors, Sean Gomez is retiring as of September 30th.
Sean has been an integral part of our team as an Automotive Engineer and has made vast contributions towards our shared success, such as developing and producing our world-renowned vehicle subsystems.
We will be hiring for this role, Automotive Engineer, in the upcoming weeks. For the time being, please refer all work-related questions and concerns to David Hickman, who will be temporarily taking over most responsibilities.
Employees are invited to our beloved Irish Pub on September 30th at 8 p.m. for a retirement celebration for Sean. For those of you who cannot attend in person, the event will also be virtual and a link to our Pumble video call will be shared promptly.
Please join me in thanking Sean for his loyalty and dedication over the years. We wish him all the best in his well-deserved retirement.
As we mentioned before, celebratory and positive reasons for employee departure, such as a long-awaited retirement, can be announced using a casual style. In these cases, it is of great importance to highlight the employee’s work and contributions, given that they are finishing off a long career and have likely dedicated many years to the company.
Our contributor Volen Vulkov shares his thoughts on the significance of properly recognizing leaving employees’ efforts.
“Share the person’s accomplishments and their contribution to the team. It is essential to appreciate their input, as it not only honors the departing employee but also sends a positive message to the rest of the team about how their efforts and achievements are recognized.”
💡 Pumble Pro Tip
Writing a good retirement employee leaving announcement comes after a successful retirement letter. If you are preparing for your well-deserved rest, learn how to first announce it to your employer.
Subject: Resignation of Darcy Welsh
I hope this email finds you well. I am here to let you know that your manager, Darcy Welsh will be leaving Hint.
Her last day at the company will be December 4th, and her last working day is November 20th.
I am sure you will all agree with me when I say that Darcy has been an amazing teammate and honorable manager for her time here with us. It is with a bittersweet feeling that we say farewell to her to pursue a new opportunity outside our company.
In the upcoming two weeks, we will be looking over performance evaluations and applications to promote someone from the team as the new manager. I hope you utilize this great opportunity.
We will, of course, also be taking into consideration Darcy’s recommendations. Please use the internal job board if you wish to apply for this position. We are not taking applications from people who do not already work at the company.
In the meantime, please direct any work-related questions to me and I will see to it that they are properly addressed.
We will be celebrating Darcy and her great contributions to Hint with a farewell get-together at Limelight on November 20th at 6 p.m. I hope you are all available to join and express your appreciation to Darcy in person.
Similarly to an employee leaving on short notice, the departure of a team manager can cause apprehension. Steer the narrative away from feelings of uncertainty and focus on the great values of the leaving employee. In addition, call attention to this being a good opportunity for an internal promotion for one of the team members.
💡 Pumble Pro Tip
If you are considering leaving your job, learn why and how you should craft an effective resignation letter to maintain good relations with your employer.
Subject: Departure Announcement for Diana Goodwin
I am writing to inform you that Diana Goodwin will be departing from Buzz Advertising effective November 10th. Of course, we guarantee a painless changeover of all duties.
We greatly appreciate Diana’s contribution over the years and wish her lots of success in her future endeavors.
To ensure a smooth transition, we have assigned Jeremy White to your account and the ongoing tasks and responsibilities. He has been with us for over three years and is an experienced account manager with a specialty in meticulous monitoring capabilities and increased customer satisfaction. He can be contacted via phone at +123456 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please do not hesitate to contact me with any questions or concerns, and thank you for your understanding.
Individuals outside of your organization, such as clients and collaborators, may be especially surprised when informed of employee departures. This is, of course, because they do not have insight into internal operations.
Therefore, you can minimize the cause for worry by including details about the leaving employee’s successor. This will give your clients confidence that their work will continue to be well-managed.
Subject: Temporary Farewell – Marissa Holden’s Maternity Leave Announcement
We are pleased to announce that Marissa Holden will be taking her maternity leave from December 1st. She expects to join us back on April 1st.
While she is on leave, her job responsibilities will be managed by the following co-workers:
— Chelsey Lowe – Taking over design for Arriton Furniture
— Lucille Wall – Taking over design for My Land
— Ryan Shepard – Taking over design for Cher Law Firm
Please contact them for the concerned work.
Join me in wishing Marissa a healthy delivery and much luck with her newborn.
Human Resource Manager
Maternity leave is another great example of how employee departures should not always be associated with a negative connotation. In fact, it is the company’s responsibility to shed a positive light on any employee’s farewells.
💡 Pumble Pro Tip
For more tips, templates, and worksheets on good internal communication, check out the following blog post:
Some departures will be easier to announce than others, but you should always be careful and diplomatic in your messaging. Avoid harming the employee experience and preserve the bond of trust with your staff.
There are a few things you should avoid saying and doing when announcing an employee is leaving, such as:
- DON’T delay the announcement,
- DON’T overshare without permission,
- DON’T announce internal position fulfillment without a proper heads-up,
- DON’T use a blanket email, and
- DON’T be unprepared for questions.
Let’s learn more about what you should steer clear of.
Word spreads fast and people are going to find out about employee departures one way or another. The longer you wait to announce an employee departure, the more rumors are going to spread.
So, strive to maintain authority by providing all necessary information promptly. Avoid uncertainty amongst coworkers by getting a head start on informing them about any relevant changes.
We spoke to Jill Katz, Chief People Officer at Assemble HR Consulting, about the possible unwanted outcome of not properly informing employees of departures.
“When announcing a person’s exit, a company has the opportunity to take ownership of a clear, controlled message, which is always better than allowing rumors to be created and circulated. Without hearing direct communication from leadership, it is natural for employees to swirl with curiosity and try to “fill in the blanks.”
When an employee shares a new opportunity as the reason for leaving the company, you might find that to be an exciting new adventure and want to invite everyone to wish them the best of luck. However, you should always first consult with the departing employee before sharing the cause for their resignation, whatever it may be.
Respecting their privacy is crucial, especially when their departure is caused by a layoff or unforeseeable circumstances, such as an illness.
Seasoned HR professional, Keca Ward, touches on this topic and how careful you have to be when sharing information.
“Avoid sharing negative or personal details about the departing employee, as well as making promises or predictions that can’t be guaranteed, such as future hiring plans or unverified reasons for the departure.”
If you plan to fill the leaving employee’s position with another person already working at your company or assign most of the leaving employee’s responsibilities over to someone else, make sure they are well-informed before your announcement.
You want to discuss future plans in a private conversation with whoever will take on the responsibility before you send out the announcement of employee departure to a wider audience. This way, they will not be blindsided and will have an opportunity to revise the offer.
Blanket email is a term used for when the same email is sent out to a mass audience. Copy and pasting general messaging of this sort can oftentimes come across as cold and unempathetic.
Although you will be following helpful templates and examples, like the ones we listed above, it is advised to personalize them to fit your current situation. See to it that the announcement aligns with the company’s tone and level of formality.
Including details about the departing employee, heartfelt appreciation, and honest best wishes for the future, as we spoke about earlier in this article, will guarantee a sincere goodbye.
It is not uncommon for coworkers to require further explanation and have follow-up questions after your employee leaving announcement. So, you should always be prepared with answers while being respectful of the departing employee’s privacy.
Let’s go over some common questions:
- Did you try to retain the employee?
- Is the employee leaving because of new management practices?
- Where will the employee be working from now on?
- Will a replacement be hired? When?
- Are more layoffs planned?
Keep your answers as clear and concise as possible. If you are a team leader announcing the employee’s departure, it would be best to advise with the human resources department beforehand to prepare for any questions you may receive.
An informative employee leaving announcement is a great tool to settle all concerns and make it much easier for the staff to process a colleague’s departure. Utilize your power to positively present the change and maintain an open and trusting relationship with your workers.
To sum up, a good employee leaving announcement can help you:
- Properly inform your staff of the changes,
- Ensure a smooth transition of tasks and responsibilities,
- Maintain harmony and productivity in the workplace,
- Acknowledge and express gratitude for the departing employee’s contributions, and
- Remain in good relations for future possibilities.
✉️ What do you think makes a good employee leaving announcement? How have you found it easier to inform staff of employee departures? Do you have any tips to share on how to write a better announcement?
Let us know at email@example.com and we might include your input in this or future posts. If you found this article helpful, share it with someone who would also benefit from it.