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Top Tips for


Professional Emails

Now that you’re entering the world of work you need to master the art of crafting effective professional emails. As the most frequently used method of communication in the workplace, most of you will be dealing with this task every day. To avoid any misconduct when communicating with clients and colleagues, here are our top tips for writing a professional email.

Think about your subject line.

Be concise, but not informal.

Your subject line needs to be clear and focused so you don’t waste the recipient’s valuable time and to avoid it getting lost among the mass of emails they no doubt receive on a daily basis. You may think including the words ‘important’ or ‘urgent’ will encourage your contact to click on your message, but in fact this technique is often associated with spam – so refrain from using these terms. If you keep it short and obvious as to what you’re alerting them to, the better chance you have of someone taking the time to open and acknowledge your email.

As previously mentioned, recipients often don’t have a lot of time on their hands so your email needs to be easy to read, with your main points expressed clearly and concisely straight away. However, this doesn’t mean you can use abbreviations and colloquial language such as ‘R U able to bring presentation info ASAP?!’ This is highly unprofessional and doesn’t exactly encourage your contact to take your email or even you seriously. A paragraph should be dedicated to each topic you’re addressing, comprising of brief explanations to keep a clear structure.

Who are you emailing?

Perfect your close.

First and foremost you need to address the email appropriately according to how well you know the person you’re contacting and whether or not you’ve been in touch before. If it’s the first time you’re emailing someone then a formal address is more fitting, such as: ‘Dear Mr/Ms Smith’. When it comes to contacting them a second or third time, you should start to become more familiar with each other and instead use their first name: ‘Dear John’. Take note of how they sign off their reply: if they use their first name then this signals that they’re happy for you to do the same in your next email. Once you’re communicating on a regular basis, you can then start to introduce a more casual tone by swapping the ‘Dear’ for ‘Hello’ or ‘Hi’.

If you need a response from your recipient, especially if it’s urgent, then make sure you allude to this in your final statement. Something as simple as ‘I look forward to your response’ is enough to indicate your expectation of their reply. There are many options for signing off your email and as with your address at the start of your email, it may depend on the relationship you have with the recipient. ‘Kind regards’ or ‘Many thanks’ are better for first time and more formal emails, whereas ‘Cheers’ and ‘Regards’ suit more informal ones. Make sure you include an email signature with your contact details as this is an important networking tool and it oozes professionalism. Always double check for grammar and spelling mistakes before you send your email; there’s nothing worse than spotting an error once you’ve already clicked ‘send’.

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Career Savvy Issue Fourteen  

The weather may be taking a turn for the worse, but hopefully your career is headed in the opposite direction. Especially as vacancies rise...

Career Savvy Issue Fourteen  

The weather may be taking a turn for the worse, but hopefully your career is headed in the opposite direction. Especially as vacancies rise...