Monday, 28 October 2019

Considerations when resigning

I read a short post from the Aussie group, CareerFAQs (Elesha, 14 August 2019), on what actions we should take when we resign from a job. They advised us to (a) confirm the required notice period; (b) tell our boss in person; (c) then tell our colleagues we were going; (d) after that, let our suppliers and clients know; and (e) lastly, continue to perform as normal. All good advice.

However, this article got me thinking about whether there was any further advice that I would give my clients, and I felt there were some additional points to consider, as follows:
  • Before we give notice, we need think carefully about what property can reasonably be considered to be ours, and what is our employer's. If we have developed systems or processes for the workplace we are leaving, during work-time, we need to understand that in all probability we have no rights to keep a copy of it. 
  • If there is anything that can reasonably be considered to be ours, we need to take it home well before we announce our resignation. 
  • If there are any intellectual property rights which need to be shared, ensure negotiations and contracts are in place with exit or royalty clauses built in, which have been signed and properly filed before we resign. 
  • We need to understand what the process is if we have shares in the business and want to leave.
  • We need to be aware of what will happen with health insurance or retirement funds before we announce we are leaving. 
  • We need to be prepared for our workplace to not allow us to tell clients or suppliers that we are leaving. This is to protect the organisation we are leaving, in case we take our clients, or supply arrangements, with us... potentially to the competition. 
  • We need to check our contract in case it contains clauses relating to restraint of trade. These are often written into employment contracts, but may be considered to be unreasonable, as any "restriction must not unreasonably prevent [us] from earning a living in [our] field of work" (MBIE, 2019). I have heard of hairdressers suddenly finding that they have a restraint of trade - so in theory cannot go and work for another hairdresser (which is quite unreasonable, but takes some time to untangle, and causes a great deal of stress).
  • We need to be prepared for our employer to potentially want us to leave our position earlier than we propose, within our proposed notice period. This must be on paid leave, though, and is usually to prevent us potentially poaching clients, or gathering files. 
There are probably more things we need to consider. If you can think of anything I have not covered here, I would love to hear it!


Sam

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