What To Do On Your Last Day At Work: 14 Tasks To Complete

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published 6 July 2022

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Transitioning from one job to another can be both an exciting and busy time. Although you may be eager to move on to the next step in your career, there are a few things you can do to end your last day at work professionally. Accomplishing specific tasks during your final day in your current role can make it easier for the company you used to work for to continue operating efficiently while transitioning your responsibilities to someone else.

In this article, we discuss what to do on your last day at work to help you maintain positive relations with your manager, clients and colleagues even after you have left your job.

What To Do On Your Last Day At Work

If you are preparing to leave your current job, you might wonder what to do on your last day at work with that organisation. Here are 14 responsibilities you may want to accomplish on your final day at your current job:

1. Save your files

If you work on a computer, save your important files to a flash drive or cloud service. These files can help you build a portfolio that you can share with your future clients. Keep these files organised in a folder that specifies they are from your previous job.

When saving your professional files, make sure to follow your company's rules about confidentiality and security. For example, some projects you helped develop may have a copyright that allows you to only share that work privately.

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2. Create training materials

Make training documents for the next professional transitioning into your role. While your company likely has onboarding materials for the professional set to take on your job, creating training materials with supplementary information or useful advice can help position your successor to shift more easily into their new job. Developing these training documents can also make a good impression on your current supervisor, which may help you maintain a positive relationship with that supervisor even after you have left the job.

3. Clear personal information.

Make sure you delete or shred anything that has your personal information on it. This may include clearing the browser history, cookies and cache on your work computer. If you use the same computer for your job and your personal life, disconnect all the accounts related to your job from that computer. Taking the time to delete both physical and digital documents with your personal details can help bolster both your personal security and the security of your previous team or company.

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4. Have a final lunch

Organise a farewell lunch with your team or closest co-workers. If you work remotely, consider conducting a virtual event instead during a break. Having a small celebration and reflective conversation with your colleagues can strengthen your networking relationships. It may also help you be more emotionally prepared to leave behind your current job.

Spend this lunch or digital activity reflecting on your time with your colleagues and discussing your relationships moving forward. You may also want to ask for their contact information, such as their email addresses, social media pages, websites or personal phone numbers.

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5. Finish your tasks

Complete any unfinished assignments before you leave that day. Finishing your current tasks can help you maintain positive relationships with your coworkers even after you no longer work there.

After you give notice at your current job, make a list of all your incomplete projects or responsibilities. In the following days, do your best to accomplish each task on this list. If you are in the middle of a large project, meet with your co-workers during this time to fairly delegate your duties.

6. Meet with an HR representative

If you have questions about the payroll or benefits at your current company, contact an HR representative. Meeting with a professional in the HR department can help you organise any finances or compensation benefits before you start your new position. For example, you may want to learn more about how to transfer your retirement fund to the company you are about to start working for or how to receive your final paycheck.

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7. Forward your emails

If you have a professional email at the business you presently work for, forward your future incoming emails to another email inbox or provider. For instance, your manager may want to receive all of your future incoming emails in their inbox so they can communicate with your previous clients. Set up this email forwarding system along with an automated reply explaining you no longer work at this company. Include the new contact information that the sender can use in the body of this automated email response.

If you have a phone line at your current job, change your voice mail message to also briefly explain how you have transitioned to a new role and which number they can phone instead. When possible, route your phone line to another number at the company.

8. Contact your clients

If you work in a client-facing role, let all of your clients know you are leaving your current job. Help them create a plan to move forward with the company. This could entail setting up a meeting for that client with your team or giving the client another co-worker's contact information.

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9. Clean your work area

If you have a designated desk or workstation, clean that area before you leave on your last day. This may involve emptying all of your desk drawers, throwing away any garbage and wiping down your workspace. Make sure to also take home any personal decorations, including photos. Leaving your workspace clean for the next person who uses it can demonstrate your thoughtfulness to your current employer.

If you have belongings in any common spaces at your worksite, be sure to remove or clean up those belongings too. For example, if you keep any food in the office refrigerator, finish or throw it away before your last day at work.

10. Write farewell letters

When deciding what to do on your last day of work, consider giving letters to your supervisor, team members or closest colleagues. Thank them for everything they did that was helpful to you and describe how they made an impact on your career. Consider signing these letters by hand and delivering them in person if you share a worksite with these colleagues.

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11. Have an exit interview

If the company you currently work for offers exit interviews, sign up for one. During your conversation, offer the interviewer useful feedback about your role, team or the business as a whole. You can also use the exit interview as an opportunity to thank your interviewer and highlight some of your favourite aspects about the company or your previous position.

12. Return items

Return any items that are the property of the business you are leaving, such as a laptop, smartphone, tablet or worksite key. If you work remotely, ask about the best methods for returning these items to the company. For example, your current supervisor may prefer that you use a more secure shipping method or offer to provide you with pre-paid shipping labels.

13. Have a positive attitude

Be cheerful and professional on your last day at work. It is normal to have mixed emotions about the business you currently work for and to feel conflicted on your final day there. Maintaining a positive demeanour can help you leave your position on good terms with your manager and colleagues.

14. Ask for a recommendation letter

If you have a positive relationship with your supervisor, ask them for a recommendation letter. Requesting a recommendation letter from a manager or team leader while you still work with them can help them compose a letter with more details about your skills, accomplishments and experiences. Offer to provide your supervisor with examples of your responsibilities or achievements in your current role to make it easier for them to write your letter.

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