How should I word an out-of-office e-mail?

    Abwesenheit, E-Mail
    Von Ken Taylor

    Do you have a question for Ken Taylor? Then send it to: language@spotlight-verlag.de. If your question is published in Spotlight, you’ll receive a copy of the book: Dear Ken... 101 answers to your questions about business English.

     

    Christel G.: "How can I write an out-of-office reply to incoming e-mails?"

    Dear Ken

    I’m a Spotlight reader, and I get a lot of help for my office activities from your English at Work section. Thank you for that. Today I have to work up the courageden Mut aufbringenworked up the courage to ask you my question. Whenever l go on holiday, I have the same problem: how to write an out-of-office reply to incoming e-mails. I want to inform the sender how long I will be absentabwesendabsent and when I will be back. In addition, I want to tell him or her that no automatic forwardingWeiterleitungforwarding of the e-mail will take place. Lastly, I want to suggest whom he or she can ask for support. I want to write this courteouslyhöflichcour­teously and correctly. Can you help?

    Thank you very much in advance.

    Christel G.

     

    Ken Taylor: "It should always sound businesslike and positive."

    Dear Christel

    First, you need to consider these important points:

    1. The message is an official one and should to reflectwiderspiegelnreflect the style of your organization.

    2. It should always sound businesslike and positive.

    3. It should not contain personal information that might be to abusemissbrauchenabused: if you say you are going on holi­day, for example, people will know that your home will be empty for some time.

    4. You should inform your colleagues if you intend to give their contact details in your message.

    5. The English should be clear and understandable. Here's an example:

    Thank you for your e-mail. l am currently out of the office. l will return on Monday, 27 August 2018. Your e-mail will not be forwarded. For matters con­cerning the project, please contact John Smith at (e-mail address / telephone number). For any en­quiries, please contact Meg Sims (e-mail address / tele­phone  number).

    If you need immediate assistance with anything else, con­tact Sally Barnes (e-mail address / telephone number). Best regards

    Something along these linesin dieser Artalong these lines should work well for you.


    Regards
    Ken

     

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