I am currently quite happy with my current company and role except the commute to workplace, it got to a point that I could not longer do it so I applied for a new role near my home and offered a new job.

I then set up a meeting with my manager and explained this to him 3 weeks ago telling him that I have a new job offer and wanted to resign because of the commute, told him the new place expects me start at the end of January (I am on a 2 months notice and in the UK).

He then offered me a chance to work from home which I said I would accept and stay here but this needs to be approved by the head office, currently I am waiting the answer from the head office which will come in the new year.

I have not given a formal resignation/notice letter but verbally explained my intention of leave. I also explicitly stated to my manager if working from home option is not possible I would be leaving at the end of January, however now I am thinking if this was the right approach. I have now a few options:

  1. Do nothing. If I can't work from home I will leave at the end of January (but if the company wants me to serve a notice period based on the date of telling me I can't work from home then this will cause a problem as I need to start the new place at the end of January)
  2. Write a formal resignation letter today explaining I verbally resigned 3 weeks ago and unless I am given permission to work from home I will be leaving at the end of January.

I have quite a good relationship with my manager and really don't want to upset him/the company and want to part on good terms, which one of the above options is good or are there any other way I could handle this?


  • 4
    One thing you're leaving out is the company that just hired you. It's kind of a * move to accept a job and then at least a month later tell them "ha, just kidding!" Especially at this time of year. You accepted the offer and you couldn't renege in a reasonable period. I say you should move ahead with that company, in spite of what conditions are at your current company. Commented Dec 23, 2015 at 19:15

3 Answers 3


Confirm your verbal resignation in writing now. If your employer disputes the validity or existence you don't really have much of a leg to stand on, but they might not bother. This problem gets harder every day you leave it. You and your employer can always mutually retract it.

  • "You and your employer can always mutually retract it." That depends on how bureaucratic your company is though. It could get difficult.
    – Mast
    Commented Sep 5, 2016 at 14:58
  • @Mast good point. It's a pretty high risk strategy. But the OP had to move fast and who knows how my they'd already offended their organisation with their verbal resignation threats. I wonder how it worked out.
    – Nathan
    Commented Sep 5, 2016 at 19:13

A letter of resignation is to notify the company that you no longer intend to work for them as a matter of record. This provides legal information about benefits, compensation, etc. in the event that a document is needed to verify a "termination" date. Your verbal resignation is sufficient as a professional notice to allow the company time to prepare for the transition.

It is acceptable but probably not necessary (unless for contract or legal reasons) to write a letter to explain your expectation to work from home pending approval by a certain date, otherwise your resignation is effective on a date specified. This is a conditional notice and is a confirmation of the terms of your verbal conversation (not to be worded as a threat, of course). If you do not receive the approval, you can send a letter that provides reference to the first letter, as a reminder of your impending resignation. Likewise, subsequent to an approval, you can write to thank the company for the approval and retract the resignation.

However, you can always write a letter later if the approval takes too long. A resignation letter is acceptable to be effective immediately in most situations unless you have legal or contractual obligations you have not mentioned. It's just professional to provide more notice, which you have done verbally.


I was in a similar situation. The manager countered with 3-4 different roles and offers. He accepted my written resignation and said that notice period started from the day i submitted my resignation. But in case , higher ups gave me what i wanted , the resignation would automatically be invalid. He left the decision to me after the approval came through. But in case , higher ups refused to accept his recommendation for the counter offers , the resignation would stand from the day the resignation letter was submitted. Talk to your manager regarding backdating the resignation and submitting it to him just in case approval does not come through. It all depends on the manager but he probably is sure of getting it approved.

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