Heading out for a well-deserved vacation, yet afraid you may miss something back at the office? For many people, leaving the office for vacation or for an extended period of time can cause some anxiety. Knowing how to craft the perfect out-of-office email, however, can help you put that anxiety to rest, and allow you to enjoy your time away.
Follow these out of office-of-office email tips for a stress-free vacation and a smooth transition back to work.
1. Write a Clear Subject Line
Having a clear subject line is essential to crafting the perfect out-of-office email. Otherwise, it may easily end up in someone’s trash folder.
Need some inspiration? Try these:
- Out-of-Office until (your date of return)
- Hello from (Your vacation location goes here)
- Sorry I missed you!
2. Give the Dates of Your Absence
Now that your customer or colleague knows you’re gone, make sure you clue them into when you will be back. This is as simple as giving them the dates of your absence. Start with the date you are leaving, and end with the date you will be returning.
3. Provide the Reason Why You’re Gone
Providing the reason you are out of the office lets your audience know you are human! Out on a sick day? Let them know! Enjoying a sunny beach? Share it and show them self-care matters to you. Off learning at a conference? Well, you get the picture.
4. Connect Them With a Colleague
Your correspondent is now jealous of your beach getaway, but what do they do about their issue? Be sure to include the contact information for a colleague who can help with issues during the interim. This lets your correspondent know you care, even when you are away.
- Keep It Brief
No need to give your contact a page long explanation as to what your situation is. Keeping your out-of-office email brief will make it easily scannable. This allows your contact to resolve their issue quickly and get on with their own day.
6. TRIPLE-Check the Email for Typos
Typos immediately discredit an individual and make people question your professionalism. Make sure you are certain your email is perfect. Having a colleague proofread your email would be a quick way to ensure your good to go here.
7. Use Different Messages for Internal & External Senders
The tone you use for those inside your company, and those outside may be drastically different. The individuals who handle issues for internal and external senders in your business will probably differ as well. Ensuring you are using different messages here will help you to avoid any mistakes.
8. Give Pertinent People Advanced Notice
Just a heads up, your boss and subordinates should probably not find out about your absence from your out-of-office message. Make certain these individuals, as well as any pressing clients, know about your absence well ahead of time to avoid conflict while you are gone.
9. Only Send ONE Autoreply Per Contact
During your absence, you will undoubtedly be receiving multiple emails from certain contacts. Only sending one autoreply per contact will give you an air of professionalism (you know how to work your email!) and will ensure you are not annoying your correspondents.
10. Don’t Get Too Conversational or Personal
Again, professionalism is the word here. Coming off too conversational or personal in your out-of-office email is unnecessary and makes you look silly. While you may want to share your full itinerary with your contacts, it’s probably not your best professional move.
Following these tips will help you to craft the perfect out-of-office e-mail, and also leave you feeling better about leaving your office for a few days. Take 10 minutes, get your message done, and get out of the office for the time you need off.