Business letters must be written in formal English, although we, in the US, tend to be flexible about formality depending upon whom we write the business letter. The rule of thumb is that the tone should be somber yet courteous, statements made in standard English free of slang or jargon. In addition, a business letter should not be more than one-page long. Usually a single page including few short paragraphsl serves the purpose. Here are some tips to write an effective business letter:
- Use formal language.
- Maintain a courteous and a positive tone. Even in cases you are angry about, do not spill out your anger all over the letter but maintain a calm and somber tone, which is extremely important in order to achieve your purpose.
- Write your letter in concise English. Write a draft first and revise it until you perfect it.
- State your purpose with clarity. Do not fall into the mistake of giving all details that are not necessary to accomplish your purpose.
- Proofread your draft. Check for grammar and spelling errors.
- Make sure the letter format meets the standards. The above example is written in a standard business letter format. You can use this format for your letters.
A Business Letter Example
November 14, 2011
Supervisor of Technical Operations
Vanguards Investment, Inc.
400 East 58 Street
New York, New York 10021
subject line: staff training
greeting line: Dear Mr. Sanders,
As per our conversation of May 25th, I am pleased that we have agreed upon the staff training terms we offered to upgrade your data security system. The total payment $125,000 we agree upon is for one-year or 250-hour service we will render. It includes three phases: initial testing, removing the bugs, and a final testing at the completion of system upgrade.
As soon as we receive a-twenty-percent down payment or $25,0000, we will make necessary arrangements to write the contract and send it to you for your review. After you approve of the contract, we will contact you to work out an implementation plan together.
We thank you for your business with us and are looking forward to working with you in the near future.
sender’s title line
Coordinator for Data Security Systems
The New Century Data Systems