This might be a relief or a pain in the neck.
For a resignation to be valid, it needs to be in writing.
If the resignation is straightforward, with just “I am hereby giving you notice”, then you just need to
- – acknowledge the resignation.
- – work out their last working day. Do you want them to work their notice? You decide – but either way you will have to pay them.
- Exception: if they storm out in a huff, refusing to work
- – are they owed any holiday? If so, could they take it in the notice period? Then it is less for you to pay out.
- – letting everyone (who needs to know) know that this person is leaving. Agree with them the official reason that they will tell everyone.
- – starting the recruitment to find a replacement!
But what if it isn’t straightforward? Take a look at our other FAQs on resignation:
The employee had resigned, and then said that as she was intending to move up north, and things hadn’t been finalised, could she stay on till the end of term (this was in a preschool). My client agreed (this was before I was advising her, I hasten to add) because she was having trouble finding a replacement.
This continued for the next year. The employee kept saying she was leaving, even had a leaving party that all the parents came to, but kept delaying because her house wasn’t ready or she didn’t want to move her son before the end of the school year.
Not yet gone employee came back in September (another agreed extension till half term) and my client had found a replacement to take over. The not yet gone employee then goes to the doctor and comes back after 3 days and says “I’m not going anywhere, I’m pregnant, I know my rights, and I am staying!”.
This is when the preschool owner came to me. We refused to accept her withdrawal of resignation and managed her out of the school. She came back with an ET1 form (which we knew she was going to) and the solicitors took over. This case went all the way to tribunal, where it was thrown out by the judge saying it was obvious that she had resigned and that she was just after extra money!
So if anyone asks if they can stay on a bit longer, to be honest, don’t let them – do you really know what their agenda is?! They might sue for unfair dismissal