11 Ways to Send Farewell Messages to Colleagues

Many people spend more time with their work colleagues than with their families. So much time away from home means our coworkers make an impact on our lives.  A friendly coworker can make all the difference in how we experience work. They can provide support, laughter, and empathetic listening when days are hard. If we are lucky, we develop friendships and build a “work family.”  

Unfortunately, when a colleague decides to leave, it can feel like a loss. It is bittersweet when a coworker decides to retire, move, or change jobs. The change can be scary for both of you. Their departure means that the company environment you both are used to evolves and so will your relationship. 

Emotions can be high. In times like this, the best thing you can do is give a proper farewell. Saying goodbye can be done in various ways, but in its simplest form, a well-thought-out farewell message is an excellent start to provide closure, gratitude, and best wishes. 

What is a Farewell Message

A farewell message is a personalized message expressing appreciation, gratitude, and wishing good luck to someone moving on to the next step in their life. It serves as an opportunity to honor the person's contributions to an organization or relationship. 

A farewell message can vary in style and theme. Every colleague relationship is unique; therefore, a farewell message will also be so. Your goodbye message can be a combination of any of the following styles::

  • Humorous
  • Short and Sweet
  • Appreciative
  • Praising 

Once you’ve decided on what direction you want to take with your message, it is time to write it. Use this as an opportunity to get creative but don’t be afraid to look at a list of farewell messages you can use to say goodbye.

Why is it Important to Send Farewell Messages

Why is a Kudoboard a great way to say farewell? ❤️

It’s a thoughtful and heartfelt way to show a colleague how much they’re cared about and appreciated! Learn more

Celebrating and bidding farewell to a coworker who is leaving might seem counterproductive, but there are some clear benefits. 

  1. It provides closure. Grappling with the feelings of a friendly coworker leaving can be difficult. Maybe you feel worried about the changes in the work environment, or you feel like you are losing a friend; Whatever your feelings are, both you and your colleague must recognize the impact they had on each other. A well-thought-out farewell message can do just that and provide the closure you need going forward. 
  2. It boosts confidence. Starting a new job or taking a new opportunity is exciting but scary. A farewell message expressing appreciation and confidence in who they are can give them the confidence they need for their new job.   
  3. Leaves things on a positive note. A farewell message can be essential in fostering a healthy work culture in the workforce. Knowing the company appreciates its employees and celebrates with them when good things happen will keep a healthy relationship with the departing colleague and show your current colleagues you care. 
  4. Shows gratitude and appreciation. Every colleague you have makes an impact on your work life. Honoring the ways they had a positive effect on the organization shows them that their work mattered. What better way for them to leave with a positive attitude towards their time with you than knowing they made a difference, even in a small way? 

11 Ways to Send Farewell Messages to Colleagues

Once you’ve written the perfect message to honor your colleague's hard work, how do you send it to your colleague? The simple answer is however you want. But some mediums are better than ever. Here is a list of 11 ways you can send farewell messages to colleagues. 

1. Kudoboard

Kudoboard is a perfect way to send farewell messages to colleagues. Kudoboard is an online tool that reimagines the greeting card traditionally passed around an office for signatures. Through customization, accessibility, and the use of multimedia, Kudoboard is the perfect way to say goodbye to your colleague.

How Kudoboard Works

Instead of passing a card around the office for team members to sign, a Kudoboard is quickly passed around virtually. Being online allows anyone to sign it at their convenience and wherever they are. 

A click on the link will take contributors to a customized board where they can post their goodbyes. If a colleague wishes to add some dimension to their message, they can include photos, videos, and GIFs to complement their message.

After everyone signs, the board will be filled with a multimedia display of your colleague's relationships and experiences during their time with the organization. All that is left to do is to schedule the delivery to the recipient. 

2. On a Gift Tag

If you are gifting a personalized gift, an easy place to include a farewell message is on a gift tag attached to the present. A gift tag can be an easy and quick way to have a note of appreciation and farewell. This approach is best when the main focus of your goodbye is the gift. 

There may be drawbacks to this method. First, a gift tag can be easily missed or ignored, much like at a kid's birthday party. Unless your gift is large, space for your message is limited, especially if you want any other team members to contribute. 

3. Memory Book

A memory book is a collection of memories, mementos, and messages. In the workplace, a memory book could include:

  • Photos taken at company events
  • Pictures of them with their colleagues
  • Handwritten notes from team members
  • Positive Customer reviews
  • Momentos from projects they completed
  • Awards they earned

While a memory book can be a meaningful representation of your colleague’s time with the organization, creating it will be time-consuming. You will need to come up with and collect all of the artifacts you wish to include. Then, it will require you to buy and put together a book. 

{callout} Kudoboard makes memory books easy by allowing everyone to submit messages, photos, and more. Then print it in just a few clicks!

4. Paper Greeting Card

A paper greeting card is what you would find in the aisle of your local grocery store. It is a farewell card that is premade and can easily be grabbed while you are shopping. A paper greeting card comes with a theme and message already written out for you. 

All a paper greeting card requires of you is to select the one that fits the situation best. Then you only need to purchase it and fill it with your farewell messages.

While paper greeting cards are convenient, there may be better options for sending farewell messages to your coworker. A paper greeting card can’t be personalized, and message lengths are limited by space. Additionally, if you wish to collect group signatures, you must pass the card around the office, which takes time. 

Lastly, A paper farewell card is easily lost, especially as your coworker transitions to their new job. If they do not lose it, they will need to find a place to store it or take a picture and throw it away.  

5. Farewell Scrapbook

A Farewell Scrapbook is a lot like a memory book. Typically, the goal of a scrapbook is to tell a story through pictures. A scrapbook allows you to get creative. You can create a unique and personal farewell using a collection of images, stickers, and unique paper designs. 

A farewell scrapbook can easily house farewell messages because you control the design. However, creating one takes a lot of time and mental energy. Designing and creating each page in the scrapbook will be tedious and require a lot of glue. 

6. Social Media Shoutout

In today’s digital age, you likely have an active company social media account. A social media shoutout can be an easy way to recognize a departing coworker.  A social media shoutout will only require a picture and a short farewell message to go along with it. Once it is posted, customers and colleagues alike will be able to comment and leave their goodbyes. 

However, it is important to understand that not everyone will appreciate a public announcement of their departure. A lot of people wish to leave quietly. A social media post will do the opposite and increase the risk of negative comments about your colleague. 

7. Goodbye Email

A goodbye email is a convenient way to send farewell messages. Once you’ve composed and sent out the email, other organization members will be able to reply with their goodbyes and well wishes. An email is easy for everyone. However, it can feel very impersonal.

Additionally, we all know how cluttered an inbox can become when people start selecting “reply all.” Your coworker (and everyone else) will likely be inundated with impersonal farewell messages as people simply click reply and send a quick message. 

8. Online Greeting Card

Like a paper greeting card, an online greeting card is a premade virtual farewell card. Online greeting cards look and feel like traditional physical ones you would find at the store but are entirely online. Typically you will send an online greeting card via email or link. 

Ecards are an accessible and easy way to send farewell messages to your colleague. They are quick to obtain and send. However, they come with similar drawbacks as the traditional greeting card. Though the theme and design are already created for you, it can need more personalization. It also becomes difficult to obtain messages from a group as many do not provide the opportunity for even a short goodbye message. 

9. Banner

You may want to do something grand to celebrate a departure. Especially in the case of retirement, a banner can be a fun and extravagant way to say goodbye. You and your team members can write their messages directly on the banner. Then, simply post it on the wall in a public place. You could also display the banner at a farewell party. 

Once the farewell banner is ready to be taken down, you can give it to your colleague for them to keep. 

If you decide to create a banner, take into account that it will be quite large, making it hard for them to store and look back at later. Additionally, messages may be short and impersonal. Often, when comments are seen publicly, people won’t feel comfortable expressing their appreciation.  Not to mention that it is hard to know how much space to take while ensuring others will also have enough space. 

10. Handwritten Farewell Letter

Sit down at a writing desk, pull out a nice piece of parchment, and channel your inner writer. A handwritten letter may feel old-fashioned, but it is a more intimate expression of your feelings. They are not only for love letters but can be an excellent vehicle for your farewell message. Especially if you feel particularly close to your colleague, a handwritten letter will allow you the space and time to say all you wish to convey. 

But writing a letter takes time, good handwriting, and much to say. In the majority of circumstances, a handwritten note may not feel appropriate. 

11. Company Message Service

If your company uses a message service like Slack or Teams, this can be an easy way to create a group message feed full of farewells. All it takes is you being the first to post a message, and then anyone who wishes can respond. 

Because it is convenient, a company-wide message on your message service risks feeling like an afterthought. Additionally, the messages you collect will be more likely to be impersonal with simple messages like “Good luck” or “Best Wishes.” 

Why Kudoboard Works

The biggest reason Kudoboard works is it combines convenience with personalization. Unlike most other options, Kudoboard uses multimedia as a way to tell a story. Goodbye messages can more effectively paint a picture through the use of videos, photos, and GIFs. It becomes a memory book of their time with the company they can access whenever and wherever. 

Another reason Kudoboard works is that it is versatile. Though it always starts as a personalized message board, you will be able to adapt the delivery of the board to fit your needs. You can use a Kudoboard in the following ways:

  • Print it as a poster to display around the office. 
  • Play it as a slideshow during their farewell party or on a company display TV.
  • Print it as a book so the recipient can have a physical copy.

The last reason a Kudoboard is a perfect option for saying goodbye to a colleague is that location doesn’t matter. Anyone you invite to contribute is able to post despite where they are in the world. By taking location out of the equation, not only will you be able to have more contributors, they will be able to take their time to write well-thought-out messages. 

How to Create a Kudoboard

1.  “Create a Kudoboard.” Choose farewell, enter your recipient, and add a title in the boxes provided. 

2. Choose a board type. Here you will be able to select if you want multiple people to sign or if the board is just from you. 

3. Select if you want to do a crowd-funded gift card. If you wish to include a gift card, you can easily provide a way for contributors to add funds with their goodbye message. 

4. Select a plan that best fits your needs. Board types vary on the number of contributors and whether or not you wish to display it as a slideshow. 

5.  Begin Creating. At this point, you can select a background and adjust the settings.

6. Be the first to post. Since you are going through the hard work to make the board, let your message be the first one your coworker sees! Apart from the glory of being the first goodbye message they will see, your post will set the standard for what others can look like. 

7. Invite contributors.  Contributors can be invited in a variety of ways. You can add contributors’ emails, copy a direct link, post to socials, or download a QR code.

8. Schedule Delivery. Select a time when you wish the recipient to receive the board. When that time comes, it will arrive in their email. If you are using a print option or displaying a slideshow, be sure to schedule the delivery for after the presentation. 

Take the Time to Say Goodbye

Saying goodbye isn’t easy, but it’s necessary. No matter your relationship with your co-worker, they will value your efforts to acknowledge their work. They will walk away feeling more optimistic about their experiences in your organization. They will have a greater understanding of how their efforts impacted the workplace. They will have a greater appreciation for the relationships they gained while working at the company. 

Your efforts to send them off with a handful of messages expressing good luck and best wishes in a farewell card will provide the confidence they need to take on the challenges that lay before them.