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When some employees miss work for various reasons without notifying their supervisor or manager, they do not know how to make their case. Others do not know how to request for a brief leave of absence in order to attend to important issues. Whether you need to inform your boss ahead of your need to be excused from work, or it happened that you were absent from work without permission and now have to report yourself, you need to know how to go about things.

Making a good case with your supervisor or manager may not be easy. The impact of your absence depends a lot on the nature of your work and the policy at your workplace. Your absence, especially when not notified ahead, may cost your organization a great deal. Therefore, before making a decision to be absent, think it through. If it has to happen or has happened, using email to write a work excuse to your superior is one great way of communicating effectively and quickly.

Before You Write a Work Excuse Email

This article is meant to show how an employee with genuine reason(s) can make a case for himself or herself for wanting to be absent from work or to show why he or she had to be absent from work. It is important, as an employee, that you are sure of the possible consequences of staying out of work without due permission. There is no guarantee that your work excuse email will receive a favorable response from your company. Likewise, there is no assurance that when you write a work excuse email to be absent from work that it will be received positively.

However, when it happens that you had to be absent for pressing reasons, and you were unable to reach your boss, it is vital to write a work excuse email as soon as possible. Similarly, when you know ahead of time that you need to attend to important personal or family matters, it is wise to write a work excuse email. You are doing this with the hope of keeping your job and also not letting your private life suffer unduly.

Finally, ensure you are well aware of the company policy and protocol on how to go about being absent from work. Therefore, before you make the decision to be absent do exactly what is expected of you. The company may give certain concessions for emergencies, and provide a way of handling them. There will also likely be a policy on how many days in advance you have to notify your boss if you wish to write a work excuse email.

Guidelines on How to Write a Work Excuse Email

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Use a Formal Style

This email is official. It should be written in a formal style. Beginning from the subject line to the closing aspect, it should be official. Your supervisor, and indeed the company, expects you to know the seriousness of your email. Your case has a better chance of being heard when you write a work excuse email in a formal style.


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Send the Email Early

We have earlier noted the importance of following the company policy. Also note that if you have to write a work excuse email, it is important to do so as soon as possible. This is particularly imperative when you missed work without permission. Notifying your boss early after missing work may save you from a query. Notifying him or her well ahead before the time you need to be absent will help the company plan for a suitable replacement or make contingency arrangements.

Be Concise with Details

Make it brief. You do not have to go into lengthy details of what happened that made you miss work or what is going on that will make you miss work. Simply mention the important facts. If you are taking permission in advance, then state the day(s) you intend to be absent. Be precise with the dates, do not give estimates.

Apologies for Your Action

This applies only when you had missed work without an initial permission. Apologizing shows that you are not taking the company or your boss for granted. It also implies that it was never your wish for things to happen the way they did. It also speaks a lot on how seriously you take your work.

Offer to Assist

When you write a work excuse email to be absent, ensure you show that you care about the company’s productivity. It is not okay to just say you will be absent, offer to do something that will cushion the effect of your absence. For example, you may do over time when you get back or talk to a colleague to stand in for you. Some companies may have policies such as salary deductions for the days you are absent. Hence, understand the company policy and how you can work with this.

Sample Email 1: How to Write a Work Excuse Email (After You Missed Work)

Subject: Regrets for My Sudden Absence

Dear Sir,

Please accept this email as official notice that I could not be present at work on 28 June 2017, due to a severe cold. Jon and Micah stood in for me when I was away. They completed all my assigned duties for that day.

I apologize that I was unable to communicate with you before staying off work. I am sorry if there was any inconvenience the company suffered on account of this.

I have attached the medical report to this email.

Please let me know if you need further information.

Thank you for your understanding.

Yours Sincerely,

Kimberly Scott

Sample Email 2: How to Write a Work Excuse Email (Before You Missed Work)

Subject: Regrets for My Sudden Absence

Dear Madam,

Please accept this email as official notice that I will be absent from work on 15 July 2017. I will be standing as a professional witness in court on this day. I informed you regarding the court summon last week and how imperative it is for me to be present.

I have made an arrangement with Anthony Hawkins from the IT Department who is currently on leave to stand in for me. During breaks at the court, I will call in to see if he needs any help.  

Thank you.

Yours Faithfully,

Gloria Atkins  

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