Chapter 2

Business Memos

This chapter will assist you in preparing and writing memos that allow you to communicate effectively in today’s workplace.

The first section explains the basic structure of a memo. The second section offers examples of the most common types of business memos. It concludes by giving you a checklist to keep in mind when writing memos.

Definition of a Memo

A memo is a document typically used for communication within a company.

The Basic Structure of a Memo

1. Heading
2. Purpose
3. Body
4. Conclusion
5. Closing
6. Carbon Copy “CC”

The basic structure of a memo is discussed in the following pages and illustrated in Figure 2.1 in section 6.

Figure 2.1 The basic structure of a memo


1. Heading

The heading section follows this general format:

To: readers’ names or job titles
From: your name or job title
Date: current date is always included (e.g., February 6, 20xx)
Subject: what the memo is about (be specific)
Different companies may use other heading formats than the one which appears here; use whichever format your company prefers.

2. Purpose

The purpose section provides a brief statement to direct your reader to the purpose of your memo.

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