Difference Between Memo And Letter

define memos and describe the major components of memos

Date and subject lines are also present, followed by a message that contains a declaration, a discussion, and a summary. A good memo organizes the information to be conveyed both for the reader’s convenience and ease of understanding and to achieve the writer’s purpose in the most effective way. Communication can be verbal which is the most common and done with words, or non-verbal which is done through body language and visual images or through writing or written communication. Let’s explore a few business memos to see this lesson in action. We’ll start with an example of a poorly written memo. An information memorandum is a document prepared by your company to provide a comprehensive overview of your business to prospective investors. Last but not least, the features of memos are massively different from the features of business letters.

define memos and describe the major components of memos

The overview gives the reader a basic idea of what the memo is about so that she can decide whether to read the memo immediately or later. Memos are a place for just the facts, and should have an objective tone without personal bias, preference, or interest on display. If the memo is a short report on research you’ve done on an issue or for a project, this is a good place to sum up methods and sources you’ve used so far. Keep it brief and don’t needlessly repeat detailed information. If the memo will be so long that adding section headings will make it easier to follow the organization of the information, by all means, do so. Be clear and direct, providing only as much information as your readers need.

Use The Appropriate Tone

First and foremost, it is necessary to ensure that the language used is appropriate, i.e., the language with which the reader is at ease. Apart from English and Hindi, various regional languages are in common use in businesses in different parts of the country. Public sector organizations such as banks follow the three-language formula. The https://accounting-services.net/ letter should provide the relevant details forming part of the message. Facts, figures, illustrations and other such information, which are accurate and reliable, as well as relevant to the context of the communication, should be incorporated in the letter. You then need to analyse these issues in depth, ideally under separate headings.

  • Wrap up your memo with a brief conclusion that tells the reader what you hope he gained from reading it.
  • Writing a memo can seem to be a bit daunting at first, but it isn’t difficult if you know the steps.
  • It is usually sent through a courier or delivered by a representative of the company.
  • Is appropriately direct or indirect, based on the reader’s likely response.
  • When a business organization designs an official letterhead it often also designs an official memo sheet, complete with a company logo featured at the top of the page.
  • For an informational memo to be most effective, present the most important items in the opening paragraphs.

Remember that a memo is also a reference tool and may be called upon at any time to provide a written snapshot of a previous event, action, or decision. Should one sentence not be enough to convey the objective, one or two more sentences can supply the background information necessary for the reader to comprehend the memo’s purpose. The body of a business memo, depending on its subject, can be as short as one or two sentences or as long as several pages.


Policy documents that start with a proposal and assemble an argument for that position are more accurately referred to as a government white paper. A government green paper which raises a policy option and is meant to open a dialogue on the proposal is more similar in tone to a briefing note than is a white paper. The memo is short for the memorandum, which means a note or record for any use in future. It is a short message used as a means of informal communication within the organisation, for transmitting information in writing. It may be titled as interoffice communication, office memorandum, or interoffice correspondence, rather than a memorandum.

A memo is an essential tool for business communication, which is used to transmit a particular information to many individuals working in the same organisation. It has a great role to play in recording the day to day business activities and can be used for future reference.

What Is A Legal Memo?

It is usually given at the top centre or top right side of the paper. Following information’s are provided in the heading. The components of a letter constitute the different parts of a letter. The following parts usually constitute the structure of a business letter.

A good letter should appeal to the reader’s sensibilities. It should go beyond the message it conveys and make a good impression. It should have elegance, which means taste, beauty and decency. Behind every letter there is an objective and the letter should have a clear purpose. The purpose of writing a letter is not just to reach out to the customer. Every letter has an intended impact which must be felt. Through goodwill messages and through circular letters existing market can be expanded.

Capitalize the first word only and add a comma after the closing. Other sizes may be used for personal correspondence, executive letters, or mass mailings. Use the letter format (full-block, semiblock, or simplified) that your company prefers.

What Are The Parts Of A Proper Memo?

This paragraph reiterates the main points and their relationship to each other, reinforcing the main point or purpose.10. Close“Sincerely” or “Cordially” are standard business closing statements. SignatureFive lines after the close, you should type your name and, on the line below it, your title .12. Preparation LineIf the letter was prepared, or word-processed, by someone other than the signatory , then inclusion of initials is common, as in MJD or abc.13. Enclosures/AttachmentsJust like an e-mail with an attachment, the letter sometimes has additional documents that are delivered with it. This line indicates what the reader can look for in terms of documents included with the letter, such as brochures, reports, or related business documents.14.

define memos and describe the major components of memos

A letter has fifteen parts, each fulfilling a specific function. Memos of this nature should include a summary, date, and location at minimum. In the meantime, I’d appreciate your cooperation as takes place. This makes some sort of conclusion from the issues and problems described in the «Background/Discussion» section. It also describes where you intend to go from here. Closing remarks are an opportunity to restate your observations and analysis, make recommendations, and propose solutions. You’ve put it in writing; now call for an action.

That article requires ten feet between a building and a side property line. Announces the topic and is placed flush left two lines below the salutation.

The Guidelines For The Preparation Of An Interoffice Memorandum

SalutationA common salutation may be “Dear Mr. .” But if you are unsure about titles (i.e., Mrs., Ms., Dr.), you may simply write the recipient’s name (e.g., “Dear Cameron Rai”) followed by a colon. A comma after the salutation is correct for personal letters, but a colon should be used in business. The salutation “To whom it may concern” is appropriate for letters of recommendation or other letters that are intended to be read by any and all individuals. If this is not the case with your letter, but you are unsure of how to address your recipient, make every effort to find out to whom the letter should be specifically addressed. For many, there is no sweeter sound than that of their name, and to spell it incorrectly runs the risk of alienating the reader before your letter has even been read. Avoid the use of impersonal salutations like “Dear Prospective Customer,” as the lack of personalization can alienate a future client.7. An emphatic opening involves using the most significant or important element of the letter in the introduction.

define memos and describe the major components of memos

Rumors change and transform as they are passed from person to person, and before you know it, the word is that they are shutting down your entire department. Other date changes, promotions, milestones, or product announcements could also utilize this format. Requires a good archiving system to make memos easily accessible for those needing to review a record of company policies, procedures, etc. As in any form of communication, a respectful tone goes a long way toward achieving the results you desire. More complex messages can be broken into subsections with descriptive headings printed in bold, underlined, or italicized.

More In ‘words’

Planning to distribute your memo in hard copy format? When you are sure the memo is ready to go, hand-write your initials by your name on the ‘from’ line, then copy and distribute the document to the recipient. Your initials serve as a form of signature on a memo. Proofread the memo carefully before you send it. Make sure that is free from typos and that the document accurately conveys the point you want to get across.

Type the receiver’s address—including the type of street , compass points , and full ZIP code—in the order pictured. Place the suite, room, or apartment number on the address line, after the street address. Fold the bottom edge up so that the paper is divided in half, and create a clean crease. Early last week we received your letter, along with a drawing of the deck that you want to add to the east side of your restaurant. However, the drawing shows that the proposed deck would extend within six feet of your property line, thereby violating Article X in the city’s building code.


But we used a pre set memo from the head office. It has come to my attention that many employees are having trouble using our recently acquired NewTech sales management software because it currently creates duplicate client entries. Some of you have stopped using the system altogether. We want this software to help you do your jobs better, not to take up more time. Therefore, it is fine to hold off using it until we resolve the technical issues with NewTech staff. When you type a memo, make sure to give the grammar and spelling in the memo a thorough check. You don’t want to turn the office into an impromptu middle school English class.

Office Memo Format And Explanation

One effective way to address informal, unofficial speculation is to spell out clearly for all employees what is going on with a particular issue. If budget cuts are a concern, then it may be wise to send a memo explaining the imminent changes. If a company wants employees to take action, they may also issue a memorandum. In this way, memos often represent the business or organization’s interests. They may also include statements that align business and employee interest, and underscore common ground and benefit (Business Communication for Success, 2015, 9.2). A memo (or memorandum, meaning “reminder”) communicates policies, procedures, short reports, or related official business within an organization. It assumes a one-to-all perspective, broadcasting a message to a group audience, rather than to individuals such as what email or letters often do.

Advantagesand Disadvantages Of Memos

While you are at it fill in the FROM and DATE fields. In most cases they are people from within your organization that define memos and describe the major components of memos share a need for the same information. Small Biz Ahead is a small business information blog site from The Hartford.