How to Withdraw a Resignation Letter

How to Withdraw a Resignation Letter

Have you ever taken a decision and later realized it was wrong? Do you consider some choices to be reversible or vice versa? What do you do if you want to overturn a hasty decision? How do you convince your superior (s) that you truly want to reverse a decision? What is the best way to withdraw an official letter you submitted to your employer? These are some of the questions that come invoke when employees or workers want to retract or withdraw a resignation letter. How do you make your employer believe that you will maintain your standards and even do more after submitting a resignation letter? Well, all hope is not lost; there are several things you can do to turn the table after submitting a resignation letter. One of such things is to officially retract or withdraw your resignation from work.

Several reasons can make employees want to resign from work; these include poor benefit packages, lack of increase of salary, non-payment of salaries, and bad work culture among others. Admittedly, it is difficult to enjoy working in an organization where you feel stagnant and not progressing; every worker’s dream is to grow as much as possible. But then again, a stone at hand is better than none; moreover, nothing is guaranteed anymore in the current global financial and economic crisis.

However, resignation from work should be done after prior thought and thinking and not in haste. You shouldn’t submit a resignation letter simply because there is a mass exodus of workers from the company. Additionally, you can speak to your direct manager or supervisor before making such a decision. Thankfully, it is possible to reverse your decision after realizing that you made a wrong choice or somehow changed your mind after consulting your friends, family, or trusted coworkers.  All you need do is go through the right channel and make the retraction or withdrawal of your resignation letter official and professional. Don’t just send an email or tell your employer verbally; it may make your boss doubt your personality and professionalism. In this article, we will discuss the meaning of a resignation letter and what it means to retract, rescind, or withdraw a resignation letter. Similarly, the article will provide tips on how to withdraw a resignation letter as well as an insight on how to write a withdrawal or retraction letter.


Definition of a Resignation Letter

A resignation letter is a letter written to announce an employee’s intent to leave a position currently held. In other words, a resignation letter is an official letter sent by an employee to their employer stating their intention to leave their current role in the organization. It includes the details about the last day at work and outlines any next step for transition.


Meaning of Withdrawal or Retraction of a Resignation Letter

The process of withdrawal or rescinding of a resignation letter involves an employee trying to reverse a decision of leaving the company after a change of heart or circumstance. It also occurs when an employee informs the organization that they want to maintain their position in the company after previously asking to leave. However, the decision on whether you remain with the organization or leave lies solely with the employee even if you go through the official process of retraction or withdrawal of the resignation letter. It is important to contact and communicate effectively with human resources and your supervisor to keep track and record your withdrawal. Also, your application for withdrawal must state clearly that you want to take back or reverse your previous statement on leaving; make sure you request to stay on the job beyond your specified departure date.


Reasons for Withdrawing a Resignation Letter

Although retracting or reversing your decision to resign an appointment might raise questions about your decision-making, go ahead and do it if you are convinced it is the right thing to do. Below are some reasons why employees may want to withdraw a resignation letter;

  1. The organization may offer promotions and other incentives.
  2. The cancellation of a proposed job offer.
  3. The resignation letter was handed in the heat of the moment.
  4. The employee simply changed their mind and don’t want to move anymore.
  5. In cases where an employee had to resign to offer care to a family member, a rapid improvement in the health of the aforementioned can lead to a withdrawal of resignation.


Steps on How to Withdraw or Retract a Resignation Letter

If you are certain that you want to remain in the organization after submitting a resignation letter, implement the following tips and steps to process your withdrawal of resignation letter;

  • Research and know your rights
  • Go through the organization’s handbook
  • Communicate with your supervisor beforehand
  • Prepare evidence
  • Open the line of communication
  • Maintain your standards and performance
  • Write a retraction or withdrawal letter

Research and know your rights: Consider a situation where an employee resigned and the employer said they could change their mind at any time. When the employee withdraws or retracts their resignation, the employer says they cannot accept the withdrawal. In some settings, the employee could claim wrongful termination because their supervisor promised and assured them that they could decide to stay. However, this is not the case everywhere; thus, research your local labor laws and seek legal counsel if you have reason to believe you have a legal right to keep your job despite a resignation.

Go through the organization’s handbook: Every organization is expected to have information or guidelines on resignation and withdrawal of resignation. Therefore, try and review the organization’s handbook and your appointment contract to get such information. Then, go through the policy document thoroughly and fill out withdrawal or retraction forms in that regard if available. Similarly, you can prepare a written statement of withdrawal in a situation where policies are not available.

Communicate with your supervisor beforehand: Before you submit an official notice withdrawing your resignation letter, have a chit-chat with your immediate supervisor ahead of time to find out if you can stay with the team. The attitude of the supervisor can help you to manage your expectations; regardless of their body language and willingness or not to keep you on the team, go ahead with the process of withdrawing the resignation letter. Communicating with your supervisor can help to give you tips on how to draft your retraction letter; it is easier to use rhetorical strategies when drafting the withdrawal letter if your supervisor is interested in keeping you and vice versa

Prepare evidence: There are cases where employees are faced with no choice but to resign their employment. One of such is when you quit caring for a sick family member. When the family member suddenly recovers, the employer may be compelled to accept your retraction letter and keep you on the team. However, you need to prepare and have evidence to back up your claim even if you have strong and tangible reasons for wanting to keep your job. Also, having some basic receipts and other relevant proof can help to convince your employer that you deserve a second chance.

Open the line of communication: Make it clear to your supervisor that you are open to discussing different options that would enable you to stay at your current point of employment. Ask about when you can expect to receive a decision and respect that they may need time to discuss the decision with other board members.

Maintain your standards and performance: Employers often get impressed by hardworking employees; to succeed in your attempt to withdraw your resignation letter, try and maintain your standards and performance. Complete all tasks on time; make sure you carry out all your responsibilities diligently and efficiently. This will show your supervisor and the organization that you haven’t lost your zeal nor dropped your standards even after wanting to leave the company. Also, it shows the employer that you are fully committed to the growth of the organization.

Write a retraction or withdrawal letter: After putting the aforementioned tips into consideration, it is time to write an official letter of withdrawal of resignation. The letter should specify your reasons for retracting your resignation letter without ambiguity. Also, clearly state what you intend to bring and improve on if retained. The withdrawal letter should be drafted thus;

  • Address your boss and Human resource: Begin the page with a header that includes the date of retraction, your name, and your title. Address the letter to the person you tendered your resignation to, usually your supervisor and a rep of human resources.
  • Start with a retraction statement: Use the first sentence in the first paragraph to state that you are withdrawing the resignation letter you submitted. Also, include the date that you sent the letter to establish a timeline of your communication.
  • Request to keep your job: In the next sentence, ask to continue working in your position. It is important to include both a withdrawal and a request to continue.
  • Apologize for the inconvenience: Next, show tact by recognizing that resigning and then changing your mind has an impact on the team. Apologize for the uncertainty and explain that it wasn’t your intention to distract or confuse the team.
  • Explain your reasoning: Tell your boss why you need to withdraw or retract your resignation letter; you aren’t obligated to include personal details, but providing your boss with a context for your decision can help them to be more empathetic to your situation and consider giving you another chance.
  • List the benefits of keeping you on the team: Now, you should add a few details about why the organization should allow you to remain with the team. Bring up your performance record and highlight any outstanding achievements that you have accomplished in your position.
  • Discuss your plans: Include information about your plans at the company to reassure them that you aren’t going to contribute to employee turnover despite your past attempt to resign.
  • Close with thanks: Thank your supervisor for considering your request. Be sincere and polite; express genuine understanding of the supervisor’s situation. Consider gracefully sharing that you will respect their decision regardless of whether it favors you or not.


Just as you did when you wrote the resignation letter, be professional and make sure your message is polite. Proofread and edit your withdrawal letter to be sure it is devoid of errors before you send it to the organization.

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