How To Resign

You have found your perfect job, congratulations! However, now you must deal with the issue of RESIGNATION!

It can be quite an unpredictable time and you may feel like you are letting your current employer down. This feeling of guilt can tempt you into giving your current employer more notice than legally required, so as not to leave them in the lurch.

Read our guide on your rights and how to manage your resignation.

Notice periods

In the Middle East, there seems to be an issue around notice periods.  Did you know that in Canada and the US, they only give 1-2 weeks’ notice, depending on the tenure of the employee?  The UAE labour law states that notice period should be 30 days, unless a clause has been signed by both parties in the employment contract. Your notice period officially starts the day that the resignation letter is submitted, regardless of whether your employer ‘accepts’ it.

So why is it that even if by law you only need to give 1 month, many employees feel this is not enough, and they offer another 2-4 weeks on top of this?

Once you have resigned, your loyalty should start to switch towards your new employer, after all, they will be the company to pay your salary for the next few years potentially.  Yes, you need to leave your existing employer on good terms, however, not if it is detrimental to your new employer.  Think of it this way – if your employer chose to cut costs and make you redundant, is it likely they would pay you any more money than they have to? It is common practice to get a month’s salary and for a company to keep your visa open another 3 months as a gesture of goodwill.

We occasionally hear candidates reporting that they tried to resign, but their Manager did not accept their resignation. This is something which can be managed effectively if you resign in the right way. However, no employer can force you to work beyond your notice period – if you are facing this problem you can lodge a complaint with the MoHRE

How to resign smoothly
  • Inform your manager in person then follow it up with a formal letter – if you are planning to resign, keep it to yourself until after you have informed your line manager and agreed a communication plan. Office gossip is present in many work-places and it will do you no favours if the management hears about your intentions before you have formally informed them – worse still, if you are in a client facing role and your employer’s customers get to hear of it first. Keep it positive – this is not the time to vent any issues. A sample resignation letter can be found here 
  • Know your rights and what money is owed to you – read your contract to ensure that you know how long your notice period is, calculate your end of service benefits owing, and make preparations should you owe money for ending a ‘limited contract’ early. Be confident and firm that you know your rights and will not be intimidated. Find out more
  • Finish your ongoing work and clean-up the files on your computer – if you are going to a competitor and your position allows you to access sensitive information it may be likely that you will not be permitted to return to work. Ensure that you have tied up any loose ends, saved any contacts and files and removed any personal information from your work technical equipment.
  • Prepare handover notes and offer to train your replacement, leave your position and workplace in a way that makes you feel proud.
  • Remain positive – continue to work to the best of your abilities, even if you are counting down the minutes before you can finally leave your workplace attempt to remain positive and do not spend your time bragging about your new job or talking down your current company.  

And very importantly –Do not burn any bridges  – make sure you say goodbye to colleagues and work contacts, inform them where you are going and, if appropriate, write LinkedIn references for co-workers  and encourage them to do the same. You never know when you will work for/with these people again.

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