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I work at a large company and after the most recent "management restructuring," most of the employees in my department have managers at various other locations. While my manager used to sit about 30 feet away from me, my new manager works at the corporate headquarters about 900 miles away.

Around the same time as the management switch, I found a much better job opportunity that I intend to pursue. I would like to give my two week's notice, but with my manager so far away, I can't think of a way to do it besides email or an after-hours call (we no longer have conference rooms, another initiative, and cannot use our cell phones during work hours).

While trying to be as polite and professional as possible, is it acceptable to quit a job over email?

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    When you say "cannot use our cell phones during work hours", do you mean you physically don't have access to them? – DJClayworth Jun 13 '14 at 13:53
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    Is there a human resources office on your site? If so you can ask them for the use of a private telephone to talk to your manager about an employment-related matter. – O. Jones Jun 13 '14 at 15:54
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    @OllieJones - post that as an answer. Best I've read so far. – user8365 Jun 13 '14 at 20:20
  • write him a letter – Pepone Jun 14 '14 at 1:12
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While trying to be as polite and professional as possible, is it acceptable to quit a job over email?

You could, but these sorts of sensitive communications are far better handled face-to-face, or at least over the telephone, rather than by email or snail mail.

Since face-to-face doesn't seem practical, you should call.

If you really cannot find a convenient location to call from, you could call from your cubicle, and tell your manager that you need to speak with him privately for a few minutes, and ask the best way to do that.

He/She may suggest an after-hours time, or may suggest that you call during lunch, etc.

This way, you aren't speaking about a delicate situation in public, but are getting the attention of your manager in a timely fashion.

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can't think of a way to do it besides email or an after-hours call (we no longer have conference rooms, another initiative, and cannot use our cell phones during work hours).

Why would you need a conference room? Do you not have a desk phone? Do you really have no way to contact him that doesn't involve email? Are phones of any sort not permitted in your company?

900 miles is less than 2 timezones away (no matter which direction), so it should be possible to reach him via telephone during your common office hours.

Call first, speak with him directly (don't leave a voicemail saying "this is my 2 weeks' notice"), then follow up with an email restating that you are giving notice, your final day, and thank him and the company for the opportunity, experience, etc.

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    The only reason I mentioned that is because I thought it might be weird to quit my job by phone while sitting at my cubicle, surrounded by my co-workers and team members. – BennyMathison Jun 13 '14 at 11:24
  • @MattDavBen What's to prevent you from you using your legs to go outside and use your cell phone? Having said that, you are likely to hit your manager's voice mail. Leave a voice mail telling them you're leaving and that you'll call them a couple of hours later. Additionally, email them, letting them know that you're quitting, that you tried to reach therm and that you'll try again to reach them. If you are still talking to the manager's voice mail two hours later, reiterate you're leaving and ask them to call you back at your cell at their own convenience. Email again at the end of the day. – Vietnhi Phuvan Jun 13 '14 at 12:31
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    900 miles north is usually the same timezone ... – llrs Jun 13 '14 at 13:01
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    @Llopis "same timezone" falls under "less than 2 timezones". – alroc Jun 13 '14 at 13:17
  • -1 for suggesting quitting you job by phone in an open office surrounded by your colleagues. – DJClayworth Jun 13 '14 at 13:52
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It's far better to deliver important messages, like a resignation, in person or by phone than by email. Email is impersonal and easy to overlook.

You say you cannot use your cellphones during work. However I think this is an exception to that rule.

Start with an email or phone call, asking if you can call your boss at a specific time. Tell him you need a private conversation, so that he will be somewhere private too. At that time, get yourself to a place where you can be private - a vacant office with a closeable door will do, but if you don't have that, leave work and find somewhere to make the call. A coffee shop would do - it's not 'private', but at least you won't be overheard by your colleagues. Alternatively leave a bit early and do it from home at the beginning or end of the day.

Tell your boss the news. Then, when the conversation is done, follow it up with an email summarising what you told him. This is to make sure that there is a record that you have resigned, so that your notice period can start from that time. You might also want to send a written letter, possibly to HR. Your boss will have a better idea of what is needed.

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Is there a human resources office on your site? If so you can ask them for the use of a private telephone to talk to your manager about an employment-related matter.

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Write your boss a short resignation letter and send it via the postal services - use registered delivery if you need to prove the date for notice periods

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