What Do I Have to Consider when I Quit My Job?

You have signed a new employment contract and will soon be starting a new job. To ensure that everything runs smoothly, there are various points to consider.

From now on, you will only be working for a limited time in your old company. Make sure you make the best possible exit – this will have a positive effect on your reputation as an employee.

Until your last day of work, you need to do the following things:

Give Proper Notice

  • Terminate your employment contract
    • We recommend that you give written notice. Then everything is well documented just in case.
    • If you send the letter of resignation by mail, send it registered.
    • If you hand in the letter of resignation directly, ask for a written confirmation of receipt.
    • Usually a simple phrasing is sufficient: "I hereby terminate my employment contract as of (end date of employment). I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for the good cooperation at all times." Name, date, signature.
    • Make sure to terminate your current job in due time. The date your resignation is received by your employer is the relevant date.

Inform Colleagues and Contacts

  • Notify everyone who will be affected by your job change
    • First inform your boss. Discuss with him or her how everyone else with whom you regularly interact professionally will be informed: Work colleagues, customers, suppliers, business partners, etc.

Request a Job Reference

  • Ask for a job reference
    • You are entitled to a written reference. Request this in good time.
    • The job reference must describe the employment relationship completely and truthfully and provide a favorable assessment.
  • The following must be included in the job reference
    • Beginning and end of the employment relationship
    • Function and activities performed
    • Job percentages
    • Assessment of the quality of your work
    • Assessment of your behavior
    • Notice that you have resigned
  • Errors must be corrected
    • If you find inaccuracies, errors or untruths in the reference, you can demand that your superior changes the text. The legal service of Employees Switzerland will help you to enforce this if necessary.
    • The reference must not contain any unclear phrasing or codes that can be interpreted in different ways.
    • Individual negative incidents may not be listed in the job reference (for example, having arrived too late for work once).

Take Your Vacations

  • Use up your vacation credit
    • If possible, all your vacation days must be used up by the time you give notice.
    • Discuss the exact dates with your boss.
    • Your boss may refuse to allow you to take vacation days if he or she is dependent on your work performance for operational reasons. In this case, these vacation days must be paid out to you.

Return Work Materials

  • Hand in everything that does not belong to you
    • You can of course take your personal belongings with you.
    • Return everything that belongs to your employer.
  • Clean up your PC
    • Make sure that all work data is stored correctly on the PC or server.
    • Delete private data on all devices of the employer.
    • Delete business data only with the consent of the employer.

Change Pension Fund Correctly

  • Check your pension fund
    • Your old employer deregisters you with the old pension fund, your new employer with the new one.
    • You will receive a form from the new pension fund for the transfer of vested benefits. Complete this form and send it to the pension fund.
    • The termination benefit of your old pension fund may be greater than the purchase of the full benefits of the new pension fund. In this case, some pension funds allow you to transfer the excess to a vested benefits institution.

Settle Financial Obligations

  • Settle any mutual financial obligations with the employer
    • Claim any expenses owed.
    • Pay back contributions owed to the employer.

Be Remembered Fondly

  • Make sure you are remembered in a positive way
    • Commit to your job until the last day of work.
    • Train your successor well.
    • Do not leave any unsolved problems behind.
    • Keep trade secrets to yourself.
  • Ask for an exit interview
    • Do not turn this into a settlement of accounts with your boss – even if it would be justified from your point of view. This can negatively impact your job reference and reputation.
    • Thank them for the professional opportunities they have given you.

Say goodbye in Style

  • Say goodbye to your work colleagues in a sympathetic way
    • Buy them an aperitif.
    • Give a nice farewell speech.


Hansjörg Schmid

Hansjörg Schmid