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Sending attachments

  • Send attachments only when necessary. Do not clog up the recipient’s inbox with unnecessary attachments.
  • Ensure that attachments are in a format that is accessible to the recipient. For example, a .docx file cannot be opened

    by someone who is using .doc on their computer.

Privacy and Security

  • Official email should not be used for sending or receiving personal messages. Many companies have a policy

restricting the use of their email service for personal purposes. Official email ids can be accessed by the authorities

through system administrators. Hence it is best to avoid writing any personal matters or anything against the company

or its employees using the official email service.

  • Email accounts are perceived as secure because they are protected using passwords. However, these passwords can be

easily hacked by hackers or even criminals to gain access to your data. Sending confidential or sensitive information

via email is not secure unless you use special encryption and data protection methods available for the same.


Language in an email - some dos and don'ts

  • Language in an email should be simple and direct, yet formal. Use of first person pronouns like I, we is permitted.
  • Avoid long, complicated sentences and excessive formality.

[math]\times[/math] The documents attached by you provide evidence of the correctness of your claim and are

under consideration by the authorities.

[math]\surd[/math] The documents you have attached support your claim; they are being considered by the authorities.

  • Use the correct tense.

…ing should be used only for actions that are actually in progress and not for stating facts.

[math]\surd[/math] We are considering the offer.

[math]\times[/math] I am not having the documents.

[math]\surd[/math] I do not have the documents.

  • Eliminate redundancy.

[math]\times[/math] The meeting will be held at 2 p.m. in the afternoon.

[math]\surd[/math] The meeting will be held at 2 p.m.


[math]\surd[/math] The meeting will be held at 2 in the afternoon.


*Avoid jargon.

[math]\times[/math] We are beginning to perceive a need for more comprehensive practice activities among the student community.

[math]\surd[/math] Students need more comprehensive practice activities.


  • Use active voice.

[math]\times[/math] Self-appraisal reports will be screened by an independent external observer.

[math]\surd[/math] An independent external observer will screen self-appraisal reports.

  • Be politically correct and gender neutral.

[math]\times[/math]The customer can redeem his loyalty points during the first 10 days of each month.

[math]\surd[/math]The customer can redeem his / her loyalty points during the first 10 days of each month.


[math]\surd[/math]Customers can redeem their loyalty points during the first 10 days of each month.

  • Look out for commonly-occurring spelling errors. Many email services offer an in-built spelling and grammar check

which can be activated through the settings.



  • Proofread your email before hitting the “send” button. Emails once sent cannot be retrieved hence it is better

to make sure that they are error-free before sending them.

Complete the email Quiz [here]

Receiving email

  • Check your email inbox regularly.
  • Reply to emails as promptly as possible. If you require time to research or prepare a detailed reply,

send a ‘holding’ reply. Acknowledge the receipt of the email and indicate the time when you will send the details.

  • If you are going to be unable to read and reply to emails, use the automatic response service to keep

the sender informed when to expect a reply.

Take another editing quiz