response to former employee complaint

I had an employee who was a no-call, no-show last week. Called me the day after to complain about manager. Wild, off the wall complaints. I interviewed everyone in that department plus others outside dept. who occasionally worked with manager. None of these claims could be substantiated. I mean, they were all lies. This manager has been with us for many years and has never had a complaint made against her. Anyway, the ex-employee then sent me an email stating she did not want to return to her position, but only to report the "unprofessionalism in this incident". She went to say that she "plans to submit this to the GA Dept of Labor".
Initially, during the verbal conversation, I told her I would follow up. She mentioned that in her written response. I feel like I should respond. I need to let her know that her claims could not be substantiated, that we hereby accept her resignation, without ticking her off. I've kicked around a few things but wanted some opinions.

something like....I've conducted a thorough investigation but could not find any evidence to substantiate your's unfortunate you feel this way....we hereby accept your resignation as indicated in previous email...

Should I take out the "unfortunate" part??

Ugghhh.. I need more coffee. This has already taken up way too much of my time.


  • 6 Comments sorted by Votes Date Added
  • For brevity's sake I'll focus on the single question vs. the scenario. You might try using "We regret" ... It allows you to stay away from the subjectiveness of "unfortunate".
  • How about. "Your resignation has been accepted and your concerns have been addressed."

    I have found that when investigation was negative the ex-employee is not going to like anything you say and will/won't do what she threatened anyway. I much prefer to give my documentation/answers to an official inquiry.
  • I would not include "your concerns have been addressed". That implies validity to her complaints.
  • Agreed. Just be simple in response and let any charges go forward. You have already investigated and found nothing so not to worry.
  • My suggestion:

    "We regret your decision to leave employment with _______ . However, we hereby accept your resignation, effective .

    Regarding your complaints concerning your former supervisor, Ms. _______, I am in process of investigating these matters at this time, and once our investigation is concluded, will take action as appropriate.

    We would like to take this opportunity to wish you well for your future career."

    Since you don't mention a written resignation, my inclination would be to use this opportunity to create some kind of documentation, including an effective date of resignation. You can also use it to document that you're investigating-- while being completely noncommittal re: the outcome of the investigation and any resulting action.

    My experience with these situations-- where a disgruntled EE suddenly starts throwing out a raft of accusations as they're walking out the door (or anticipating that they're about to be booted out the door)-- is that very few of them ever follow up with an actual EEOC complaint. Good luck!
  • Some EEs can attempt a petty sort of revenge with these types of antics. Anyone who crossed them or got sideways with them becomes a target of opportunity upon leaving. They like nothing more than to see the company spend time and money, and to get various folks in trouble, just to satisfy some dark urge.

    These are the same type of folks (in different environments) who write graffiti on walls, key cars, and whack your mailbox with an aluminum bat when driving by at 30 mph.

    Document your investigation in case the complaint does get lodged, write her a very short letter confirming that you have processed the resignation, that your investigation did not validate her complaints, and the matter is closed.

    No judgemental language, just short stuff and move on.
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