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Feb 1, 2022

Writing

How to write an official email

Want to learn how to write an official email? Starting an official email can be challenging, but we'll run you through the official email format and 10 official email samples so you'll feel confident about official email writing in no time.

Blog writer

Lawrie Jones

Writer

Blog writer

Blog image
Blog image

Are you hesitant about how to write an official email? Don't worry; you're not alone. Starting an official email can be a daunting task as the message is important more often than not. However, official email writing is something we all can learn. In this article, we'll run you through the official email format, including how to start an official email, how to end an official email, and official email signature. We'll also provide you with 10 samples of official email and introduce you to Flowrite's email templates that help you write official emails faster than ever before. 

What is an official email?

An official email is a type of formal email that you send to a person (or a group) that requires a response. Like all formal emails, official emails must be professional and formatted correctly, with the official structure, subject line, greeting, and signature. 

Examples of official emails include: 

  • Sick leave message 
  • Invitation to a meeting
  • Introducing someone formally
  • Handing in your notice
  • Thanking someone

Official emails such as a resignation letter or a leave request, for example, are formal requests that can be shared with other people. Again, being as polite and professional as possible in such messages ensures a positive response.

You may be emailing your boss, professor, colleague, customer, or potential business partner. The language you use and how formal you are can affect how recipients perceive you, researchers say. "The language of the Internet, or textspeak, may be suitable for casual interactions but inappropriate in professional contexts," they conclude. 

The lesson? When writing official emails, stick to the appropriate structure and be formal.

Writing formal official emails aren't just professional; it's practical too. The official email format is also structured to avoid your message becoming muddies and confused. Following our guide to official emails will help you create clear correspondence that generates results.

How do you write an official email?

This step-by-step process of the official email writing format, and by the time you've read the section, you know everything there's to know about how to write an official email.

Official email format   

The structure of every official email is simple, so it shouldn't take long for you to master it. 

There are four parts to an effective official email, including:

  • Greeting
  • Opening line and body 
  • Ending 
  • Signature

Each piece of correspondence follows the same formal email structure, which means that once you've mastered it, you'll be creating effective emails in minutes.

How to start an official email

Every formal email starts with 'Dear'. 

When you're writing to someone you know, use their full name. Here's how that works: 

  • "Dear Paul Roberts,"

Should you use a title in an email greeting? We recommend that you don't. Using an honorific such as Mr and Mrs is old-fashioned and could offend, so ditch it. Likewise, it's time to ditch 'Dear Sir/Madam' and 'To whom it may concern" too.

Official email greetings

But what happens if you don't know a person's full name or are addressing a group?

If you don't have somebody's full name (or can't find it on LinkedIn, for example), address them another way, such as using their job role. 

Here's how this can work:

  • Dear Marketing Manager,
  • Dear Recruiting Manager,
  • Dear Team, 

Some people want to know if they can use "Hi" as a greeting in an official email? It's up to you, but in an official email, we'd suggest you don't. Evidence and anecdote show that informal approaches aren't appropriate in these cases. 

Our advice is to stick to the tried and tested communications approach, as it's likely to be the best way to ensure you get the response and results you want. Learn more about how to start an email in our article.

Opening lines and body

 We're not going to go into details here, but official emails are about getting a response, so be clear with your questions!

Typically, the first sentence will introduce who you are and explain why you're emailing. The following sentences cover your request, question, or message. You can see how we've used this structure in our 10 official email examples below.

It's critical that you strike the right tone of voice in your messages, so start by understanding the power of finding the right words before writing official emails. 

Ending an official email

The traditional official email sign-off is to use "Yours sincerely" if you know the person's name and "Yours faithfully" if you don't (or are writing to a group).

These two official email endings should cover you in all circumstances. Still, you can also use other endings if you want to, including:

  • Sincerely
  • Regards
  • With best wishes

Your choice of official email ending depends very much on the context and whom you're communicating with. If you know someone, you can be a little less formal. But, on the other hand, if it's the first time you've messaged or aren't confident about your communication skills, then stick with the standard email endings.

We've covered the topic of how to end an email, so if you need some more advice and guidance, be sure to check it out.

Official email signature

 An official email signature contains the essential information about you, including:

  • Name
  • Job title
  • Company (if relevant)
  • Email address
  • Phone number

These are the basics of any good email signature, but you're free to add more detail if it's relevant. For example, you could include links to social media accounts, product links, or a company logo if you want.

Official email etiquette

Business communication follows a set of rules – known as business email etiquette – that guide how emails are written and ensure that your message is communicated effectively. 

Here are 10 essential official email etiquette tips you need to know to write better business messages: 

  1. Create a compelling subject line
  2. Introduce yourself first
  3. Be short and to the point in your messages
  4. Never try to be funny
  5. Don't use emojis
  6. Stick to standard fonts
  7. Be clear about what you want, when you want it, and why
  8. Check spelling and grammar before sending
  9. Never include large attachments
  10. Use CC and BCC sparingly

10 official email samples

To help illustrate our points, we've created 10 official email samples that demonstrate the principles and the practical steps outlined above. In our official email samples, we've focused on real-life examples where you'll need to send clear correspondence that demands a response. These examples show you how to structure your messages, but don't copy and paste them. It's essential that you personalize each official email to ensure it's professional. Ready to begin?

Official introduction email sample

An official introduction email is a common courtesy that you'll extend in business. For example, you may be introducing a customer, client, or potential new staff member to someone you already know. We're referring a trusted customer to a new provider in our official email introduction template. See how it works below.

Subject line: Into: (First name 1) meet (First name 2)
Dear Melanie Clark,

I would like to introduce you to (client name) who is seeking a new supplier for their business. I have provided them with information about your business and expressed how satisfied we have been with the services you have provided to us.

I encourage you to communicate with one another and arrange a meeting at your convenience.

Yours sincerely,

Alan Hamilton

Official email for sick leave

It's a sad fact that we all get ill from time to time, and you're contractually required to let your manager know that you're not going to be able to work today. So in this official email for the sick leave template, we're clear that we're not able to work but end on a positive note with details of when we hope to return to work. 

Subject line: Into: Sick leave on (date)
Dear Melanie Clark,

Unfortunately, I am feeling unwell and won't be able to work today. However, I have spoken with the doctor, and I should be well enough to return to work in two days.

I will keep you updated on my progress and look forward to returning to work shortly.

Yours sincerely,

Alan Hamilton

Official resignation email

 When you decide to leave a role, you'll need to send an official resignation email. This official email marks the start of leaving a position and starts the clock ticking. In this example, we show you how to write a professional official resignation email that ends your employment positively while requesting the essential information you need to start your new role.

Subject line: Into: My resignation
Dear Melanie Clark,

I am writing to resign from my position as (insert job title). I have learned a huge amount working at (company) and have enjoyed the experience. However, I feel it is the right time to leave to further my career.

Please take this email as the date of my official resignation. I would welcome the chance to meet and discuss the next steps in the process, including agreeing on a final date for my time here.

Yours sincerely,

Alan Hamilton

Official meeting invitation email 

Creating an official invitation email is a core skill for any professional employee. In this official meeting invitation email, we address a team and have altered the greeting and sign-off to reflect this. As you can see, we've been clear about what we're asking for, when, and why. Take a look at our official meeting invitation email.

Subject line: Into: Meeting on marketing plan for (year)
Dear Marketing Team,

I am inviting you all to a company meeting to discuss the future of the marketing team. The meeting will take place at (insert details).

Please confirm your attendance with me as soon as possible by replying to this email.

I look forward to meeting with you all and setting out our strategic plans for an exciting future.

Yours faithfully,

Alan Hamilton

Official invitation email

In this official invitation email, we're addressing an individual by name. As you can see, this changes the greeting and sign-off and enables us to be more specific and targeted in our messaging. So let's see how this works:

Subject line: Into: Meeting on marketing plan for (year)
Dear Melanie Clark,

I am inviting you to a meeting to discuss the future of the marketing team. The meeting will take place at (insert details).

You are central to the future of our marketing department. We would very much welcome your experience and insights to help us shape its future strategic direction.

Please confirm your attendance at the meeting with me as early as possible.

Yours sincerely,

Alan Hamilton

How to write an official email to a client

 When addressing a client, it's essential to follow the rules and be respectful. In this official email to a client, we're requesting additional information on an order, but the email emplate itself can be tailored to several situations that you may encounter. Use it as an outline, and personalize it for your specific needs.

Subject line: Into: Meeting on marketing plan for (year)
Dear Melanie Clark,

My name is Alan Hamilton, and I'm contacting you from (company name). I am currently processing your order, and I need you to clarify some information before completing it.

Can you contact me as soon as possible through email or by calling me on the number below, and we can ensure your order is with you as soon as possible.

Best regards,

Alan Hamilton

How to write an official email for a job

Submitting a CV or application for a job is a common situation where you'll need an official email. In this example of how to write an official email for a job, we're friendly but focused, including requesting details on what we've supplied and asking for further information on the next steps.

Subject line: Into: Meeting on marketing plan for (year)
Dear Recruiting Manager,

My name is Alan Hamilton, and I am applying for the position of (job title). I have attached a copy of my CV and a portfolio of my work as requested in the job advert.

Please can you review the information and let me know if I have provided everything required. If anything is missing or if you have any additional questions, please feel free to contact me at any point using the details in my signature.

I welcome an update on the progress of my application in due course.

Kindest regards,

Alan Hamilton

Official 2-week notice email

While we've already covered how to write an effective resignation email, this official 2-week notice email is much shorter and more focused. Such an email is suitable for short-term jobs or a role you may be leaving for specific reasons. Unfortunately, there is no room for misunderstanding here. 

Subject line: Into: Meeting on marketing plan for (year)
Dear Melanie Clark,

Please accept this email as my official resignation and the start of my 2-week notice period. I've enjoyed my time here, but I feel I am ready to move on.

I welcome the chance to discuss the next steps, including managing the transfer of my duties to other staff.

I would appreciate a confirmation that you have received this email.

Yours sincerely,

Alan Hamilton

Official email reply sample

When someone goes to the trouble of sending you an email, it's polite to acknowledge you have received it and outline what you're planning to do with it. In this official email reply sample, we provide a short and focused holding reply that you can use in all circumstances.

Subject line: Into: Meeting on marketing plan for (year)
Dear (customer's name),

Thank you for your recent email. I can confirm that we have received it, and I am currently identifying the most suitable person to share it with. I assure you that someone will respond to your message within 24 hours.

Should you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact me at any time, and I will be happy to chat with you.

Best regards,

Alan Hamilton

Official thank you email

An official thank you is a formal correspondence that will be shared across a company and saved and stored for the future. This short and straightforward official thank you email expresses the right sentiment while being short and sweet. 

Subject line: Into: Meeting on marketing plan for (year)
Dear Melanie Clark,

My name is Alan Hamilton, and I am the (position) at (company name). I am writing to thank you for the wonderful service received from your company.

Your support, guidance, and exceptional service have been greatly appreciated over the last year, and we would like to thank you for everything you have done officially.

All of us at (company name) look forward to working together in the future.

Kindest regards,

Alan Hamilton

Official email template by Flowrite

Writing official emails is simple if you follow our process. The official email samples in this article should provide you with an outline you can adapt to your needs. However, there's an even easier way. Flowrite is an AI writing tool that turns short instructions into ready-to-send emails and messages. Suppose you're still struggling to find the right words for writing an official email. In that case, Flowrite can help you get started and offer some inspiration – or even write the whole email for you. As you can see from the example below, all it takes is a button click.

Conclusion

Still hesitant about the official email writing format? Didn't think so. In this article, we've tried to break down the official email format into pieces, including official email greetings and official email endings. We hope that this approach helped you learn how to write an official, and you now feel more confident with official email writing. You think the article was helpful; please share it with your team making starting an official email easier for your whole company. At the very least, bookmark the page to make sure that you have it at hand the next time you feel unsure about an official mail. Lastly, don't forget Flowrite and our official email templates to help you write better emails faster.

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