Email Examples: Reprimand an Employee for a Breach of Policy

breach of policy

When an employee is hired by a company, they’re required to adhere to policies. If an employee breaches policy, they’re reprimanded for a breach of policy, this could be verbally or a reprimanding email for a breach of policy. In most cases, employees are made to read these policies and sign them upon hiring. You could be a team of 10, 20, 100, or 500 people. The need to adhere strictly to these policies cannot be overemphasized.

Policies keep companies going, they contain the dos and don’ts of the company and are the bedrock that companies are built on. They could be also be likened to the rules and regulations that keep the wheels of a company spinning. When an employee breaches company policy, an email should be sent to reprimand them for their actions. When an email is sent to reprimand an employee, it serves as a warning to them and also a reminder of the consequences should they repeat such actions in the future.

Emails reprimanding employees are often written by supervisors, HR, or members of the management team. Reprimanding emails are sent to criticize employees for their actions.

An email reprimanding an employee isn’t quite the same as letting an employee go. If the employee continues to breach company policies, an email reprimanding them would then serve as a precursor to laying them off.

What Should an Emails Sent to Reprimand an Employee Contain?

The most important thing for an email sent to reprimand an employee to contain is what said the employee did wrong. A reprimanding email should state as clearly and as succinct as possible, what an employee did wrong that warranted the email, how an employee is expected to behave going forward, and the consequences of the said employee were to continue breaching company policies.

Customarily, an email sent to reprimand an employee is often preceded by a verbal warning on the issue chastising them for their actions. Reprimand emails are essential if a company wants to ensure employees adhere to policies. It’s an encouraging disciplinary process.

How to Write an Email to Reprimand an Employee for Breach of Policy

When writing an effective reprimanding email, certain guidelines should be followed to ensure the message is passed and received clearly.

An email reprimanding an employee must be written in a strong manner to show the severity of their actions. Regardless, it’s even more important that it is respectful. Before writing an email to reprimand an employee, it’s imperative that it is fact-checked that the employee is indeed breaking company policies and rules.

Depending on the severity of their actions, it’s always advisable, to begin with praising the employee on their good qualities before barreling down on what they’ve done wrong to earn a reprimand.

Proceed to explain how their actions have affected the company and list out steps that they could take to be better and mend the situation.

State out the actions that will be taken against the employee if they don’t refrain from breaking company policies. The consequences should be properly outlined to ensure the employee understands the dangers of their actions. 

Lastly, again, depending on the severity of their action, an email sent to reprimand an employee should end positively and encourage the employee that they’ll amend their actions.

Sample Emails to Reprimand an Employee for Breach of Policy – Sample One

Dear James,

I am writing to bring to your notice that I’ve received a lot of complaints concerning your actions and interactions with the female members in your department. I am upset at the severity of these complaints made against you and would like to get to the root of this as quickly as possible.

As regards this, you’re to see me and the HR first thing in the morning on Monday to thoroughly discuss this and the consequences of your actions.

I look forward to hearing your version of the events.


Michael Aburimen

Sample Emails to Reprimand an Employee for Breach of Policy – Sample Two

Dear Osamudiamen,

I am writing this email to inform you that it’s been brought to my notice that on the 24th of February, you took the company’s car home without getting permission from the necessary authorities.

You should know that this is a clear violation of the company policy. Upon hiring, you were properly sensitized about the use of the company’s vehicles without proper authorization.

Please make sure you drop by my office to say to sign a document that will go into your file to serve as an official warning. If this happens again, you’d be facing HR for a review that may result in your dismissal.

The company will not tolerate any policy behavior that violates the company policies. Take this as a stern warning.


Tunde Adebowale

Sample Emails to Reprimand an Employee for Breach of Policy – Sample Three

Dear Isabel

This email is to inform you of your poor behavior with a customer on the 5th of May.  The customer show proof of how you treated them and upon confirming, we found this to be true.

The customer called about a problem with their account and you said, “What did you do with your account? Just open another account and stop calling customer service for unimportant queries.”

This is extremely disrespectful and goes against everything we stand for as a company. As this is your first offense, we’re not going to be file this in your records.

If this ever repeats itself we will be forced to let you go.


Jenny Osunde

Manager Human Resource

Sample Emails to Reprimand an Employee for Breach of Policy – Sample Four

Hello Sandra,

This email serves as a warning to you for disregarding the company’s smoking policy.

It is clear in the company policy that you signed upon hiring that employees are not allowed to smoke on the company premises. Still, you have disregarded this policy and have been caught smoking in the cafeteria.

Consider this an official warning that will go in your record. Failure to abide by this policy will lead to the termination of your contract.

We hope this clears up any misunderstanding.


Stephanie Joan

Head of Human Resource

Sample Emails to Reprimand an Employee for Breach of Policy – Sample Five

Dear John,

This email is regarding your absenteeism in the office. This is affecting your team’s efficiency and your performance. We take attendance important and it’s expected for all employees to abide by the company policy and guidelines regarding time offs.

You have violated this policy many times last month alone. More specifically, you were not present in the office from the 18th to the 21st and on the 22 you left 4 hours before official closing time.  All along neither the HR nor the manager was aware of the reason behind your disappearance.

We understand that this is unlike you and you may be dealing with some personal issues, this is why we’re not filing this reprimand in your file but only as a gentle warning. If you’re going to be out of the office for whatever reason, you must let your manager or HR know beforehand.

We hope this does not happen again otherwise we may be forced to take disciplinary measures and possible termination.


Manager Human Resource

Sample Emails to Reprimand an Employee for Breach of Policy – Sample Six

Dear Rudy,

This email is written to officially reprimand you for a breach of policy. Upon hiring you signed a document that specifically states that employees should not share company information with anyone outside the company.

Yet this is exactly what you have done. We have substantial evidence that you met with someone on the 2nd of May and shared sensitive company information with them. This is a clear breach of the company’s policy as a result, you have a meeting with your manager and HR slated for tomorrow at 9 AM to discuss the severity of your offense and your future in this company.


James McCarthy

Sample Emails to Reprimand an Employee for Breach of Policy – Sample Seven

Hello Chukwuemeka,

This is to inform you that the management team has been receiving complaints about you from your female team members. Some of the women in your team have complained about your condescending jokes and chauvinistic remarks.

This may be an issue caused by imprudent thinking on your part, nonetheless, it breaches company policy.  We’re a forward-thinking company and complaints like this paint us in a bad light.

You’re to meet with the manager-human resource for a meeting tomorrow and tender an apology to the women you’ve distressed.

Let this be a firm warning as a reoccurrence of this and your employment may be terminated.


Samuel Jonathan


Writing an email to reprimand an employee is a delicate task. This is because while it is similar to laying off an employee, it’s not quite the same. The samples above can provide detailed case studies on how an email to reprimand an employee for breach of policy would go.

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