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How to Write a Warning Letter

Warning letter is a formal notification usually issued by the human resource department of an organization and is directly addressed to the employee. It is one of the most commonly practiced letters in workplace. It may be written to warn an employee for his poor performance, absenteeism, tardiness, lateness, misbehavior, insubordination and so on. Such letters could also be send out to a tenant or business associate, service provider for late payment, poor quality and so on.

It covers all the points of objections in a sincere and positive tone. It not only notifies the recipient about his mistakes but also informs him about the after results in case of ignorance of this reprimand. It also serves as a legal document.

Here we have presented some effective writing tips to help you write a perfect warning letter.

  • Compose it on your official letterhead as this a very sensitive and highly formal correspondence.
  • Write it down in the full or semi block style business letter writing format.
  • Keep the tone of the letter formal, sincere and positive. Though you are writing a warning notification, do not show your frustration or anger in any case.
  • Make a brief note including all the relevant facts. Do not write a long story explaining the negative points of the recipient. A long letter usually fails to serve the real purpose of the letter.
  • Enter the current date on which you hand over it to the recipient. Do not abbreviate the date line. Mention it in its full form as date plays an important role in such letters.
  • Create a significant and factual subject line. Include some relevant information to make it more meaningful.
  • Spell out the exact matter in simple and effective language. State all the issues clearly in the opening lines without much ado.
  • Get straight to the point and write down the matter without providing any background information in the first paragraph, for instance, if it for a bad performance of an employee, write down “This to notify that your poor performance is unacceptable.”
  • Provide the reference of some previous verbal warning, notice, meeting, counseling, etc. related with the current issue. This will help you to emphasize your points of objection.
  • Expand all the pertinent facts in the middle paragraph. Mention all your points in sincere tone.
  • Express your warning with some relevant examples. This will make your letter more effective.
  • If it concerned with money issue, provide the exact information of the outstanding payment, due date, payment structure and so on.
  • Highlight some of the most sensitive facts to grab the special attention of the recipient.
  • If it is too serious and the recipient is very reluctant, you can also add some serious steps that you have planned to take in case of ignorance of this warning.
  • Provide your contact information and encourage the recipient to contact you by telephone or arrange a meeting to discuss the further questions or concerns.
  • Conclude the last paragraph with a positive note and a thank you gesture. Express your trust in him completely that he will consider this letter seriously.
  • Close it with a formal complimentary closing such as “Sincerely yours”, “Truly” or something related to it.
  • Proofread it carefully. Correct all the grammatical, spelling and punctuation errors, if there is any.
  • Make sure that you have included all the important facts.
  • Put your signature on the final document to make it valid.
  • Make two copies of such document, one to send the actual recipient and other to keep it in your own records for further reference.

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