A Complete Guide on How to Write an Email to Your Manager

By Indeed Editorial Team

Updated August 27, 2022

Published October 18, 2021

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Emails are the primary form of communication in the workplace. It's important to write emails that show professionalism with every interaction, especially when writing to your manager. Writing effective emails to your manager can help you improve communication and build a strong professional relationship. In this article, we discuss reasons for emailing your manager, explain how to write an email to your manager, and share tips, templates, and examples you can use to guide your writing.

How to write an email to your manager in 8 easy steps

Follow these eight steps when learning how to write an email to your manager:

1. Consider the reason for your email

This can help you write a clear and concise message that's easy for the recipient to read. Aim to include only the most important information and stay on topic. You can send another email if you have another topic to discuss so that it's easier to keep track of each conversation in separate threads.

Related: 8 Ways to Manage Your Manager (And Why It's Important)

2. Have a relevant subject line

This helps your supervisor locate the email, understand what to expect, and prioritize the email based on importance and urgency. Your subject line can be clear and to the point and include only the most relevant keywords. You can omit words like your name because your manager has that information above the subject line. Aim to keep your subject line under 50 characters.

Related: Tips to Write a Follow-Up Email Subject Line (With Examples)

3. Start with a greeting

Use the name your manager prefers you call them. Typically, their first name or title and last name are appropriate. The greeting you choose can depend on your relationship with your manager and the nature of the message you're sending. You can use a more formal greeting for messages requesting time off or a deadline extension. When sending a thank-you note, you can opt for a more casual or personal greeting.

Related: How to Start an Email With 6 Business Examples

4. State the reason for your email

After your greeting, include an opening sentence stating why you're emailing them. You can provide more details in the following paragraph, but a high-level overview of the topic of your message sets the tone for the rest of the email. Make this section one or two sentences at most.

Related: How To Write an Email Requesting Something

5. Provide details

This is your opportunity to expand on the reason for your message. Share essential details while aiming to keep your email concise and easy to read. It's best to contain this in one short paragraph.

6. Include a call to action

This may include making a decision about a project or approving your time off. Make your call to action clear and easy to reply to. Preferably with a "yes" or "no" answer whenever possible. If you need a response by a particular date, you can also highlight that in this section.

7. Include a closing line

This is where you can thank your manager for their time and reiterate any important information. You may also want to invite them to ask any questions regarding your email. If you work in the same office, consider inviting them to visit you at your desk to discuss the topic further.

Related: How to Write Email Salutations (With Tips and Examples)

8. Add a signature

Typically, you'll have a default signature designed by the company that fits a uniform template. Use your full name and job title so your manager can easily identify you. This is especially helpful if you work in a big department or share a first name with another team member.

Related: How To End an Email

Why send an email to your manager?

It is common to reach out to your manager or supervisor in the workplace with questions or comments. Some reasons you may write an email to your manager include:

  • requesting time off

  • asking questions related to your workplace

  • confirmation about a completed project

  • deadline extension request

  • saying thank you

  • sharing information about a project

Related: 20 Best Practices for Professional Email Etiquette

Tips for writing emails to your manager

Here are several tips you can reference to write an effective email to your manager:

Use your professional email address

When emailing your manager, be sure to use your company email address. This keeps the correspondence professional and makes it easier for your manager to identify you as the sender. Some workplaces filter out emails sent from personal email accounts, so this also ensures your email arrives in their priority inbox.

Make sure it's easy to understand

A manager in any role can receive several emails throughout the day, so it's important to make sure it's clear so they can read your email quickly. Consider using industry acronyms and technical terminology if you're sure they'll understand it. This can improve the speed at which they can review the message.

Proofread

Before you send your email, proofread it for any spelling mistakes, typos, grammatical errors, or formatting issues. Sending an error-free email shows your professionalism. Proofreading also provides an opportunity to evaluate whether the message is clear and reads naturally.

Related: How To Be More Detail-Oriented (With Definition and Resume Tips)

Templates for writing to your manager in various situations

Here are some templates you can use as a guide when writing an email to your manager when requesting time off, a deadline extension, and when sharing important information:

Requesting time off

Here is a helpful template you can use when requesting time off:

Subject line: Time off request from [start date] to [last date]

Dear [manager's name],

I am emailing you to request time off from [start date] to [last date]. I have [discuss tasks to complete before you go or the plans you've made to cover your absence]. Please reach out with any questions.

Sincerely,

[Your name and job title]

Related: How To Request Time off From Work (With Tips and Examples)

Deadline extension request

Here is a short template for requesting a deadline extension:

Subject line: [Project name] deadline change request from [original date] to [requested date]

Dear [manager's name],

I am emailing to request an extension on [project name]'s deadline from [original date] to [requested date]. This change is necessary to ensure my team has enough time to [task] and [task]. Please review the attached information containing [describe the attached document]. Thank you for your time and for considering this request.

Sincerely,

[Your name and job title]

Sharing important information

Here is a concise template for sharing important information in an email to your manager:

Subject line: [Type of information you are sharing] for [project or task name]

Dear [manager's name],

I am emailing to let you know about [information] regarding [project name]. This information shows [explain]. It is important to keep in mind that [details about the project and the new information you are sharing]. Considering this new information, I believe [proposed change]. Please review the attached document containing [describe the attached document]. Thank you for your time reviewing my email, and please do not hesitate to reach out to me with any questions regarding this information.

Sincerely,

[Your name and job title]

Examples of emails to your manager

Here are examples of emails you can use to help guide your own unique emails in different situations when writing to your manager:

Requesting time off

This is an example of a time-off request:

Subject line: Time-off request from November 8 to November 16

Dear Ms. Schmidt,

I am emailing to request time off from November 8 to November 16. I have already contacted my team members about my absence during that time. Please reach out with any questions regarding my time off. Thank you for your time.

Sincerely,

Paul Humphry
Assistant Manager

Related: How To Ask for a Day Off the Proper Way in 6 Simple Steps

Deadline extension request

This email is an example of asking for a deadline extension:

Subject line: Sales period analysis deadline change requested from September 15 to September 18

Dear Mrs. Boyer,

I am emailing you today to request an extension on the summer's sales period analysis deadline from September 15 to September 18. This change is necessary to be sure my team has enough time to evaluate all sales and perform our calculations accurately. I am confident we can complete the project by the new proposed deadline. Please review the attached document containing updated project guidelines according to the requested deadline change. Thank you for your time reviewing this request, and please reach out to me with any questions.

Sincerely,

Deanne Stone
Financial Advisor

Sharing important information

Subject line: Marketing information for winter clothing line

Hi Stella,

I am emailing to let you know about the marketing stats regarding the launch of the winter clothing line. This information shows our target audience is 60% more likely to view our advertisements on social media than on traditional media. It is important to keep in mind that, in the past, our social media advertisements have been generally less expensive than our traditional media strategies.

With this new information, I believe we would benefit from moving most of our advertisements to social media as that's where we reach the majority of our audience. Please review the attached information containing our recent demographics report. Thank you for your time reviewing this email and the enclosed documents, and please reach out to me with any questions regarding this information.

Sincerely,

Marc Stinson
Senior Marketing Analyst

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