Answered By: Kate Anderson, Business Librarian Last Updated: Jun 22, 2018 Views: 21399
A memo (or memorandum) is a short communication typically used within an organization. Memos are often used as a tool to share new information.
APA does not provide guidance on formatting and writing memos, so font, font size, spacing and so forth are up to you or your instructor.
In terms of content, Cengage Learning's Online Study Center offers the following information on writing a memo:
The chief function of a memo is to record information of immediate importance and interest: announcing a company policy, alerting readers to a problem or deadline, reminding readers about a meeting, and so on ...
A memo consists of two parts: the identifying information at the top, and the message itself. At the top, identify for whom the memo has been written, who is sending it, the subject, and the date. The subject line serves as the memo's title.
The style and tone you use in a memo will be determined by your audience: You can use a casual tone in a memo to a coworker you know well, but you should use a more formal tone in a memo to your boss. It's important to organize your memos well. Most longer memos consist of an introduction, a discussion, and a conclusion. In the introduction, tell readers what prompted you to write (such as a problem or question about a specific procedure or policy), and provide any necessary background information. In the discussion section, or body, indicate what changes are necessary to address that problem or question. In the conclusion, state specifically how you want the reader to respond.
If you're new to writing memos, use one of Microsoft Word's memo templates. In Word 2016, click on File, then click on New, and search for Memo. Choose from over 15 different memo options. Be sure to swap the sample information in the memo with your own content.
If you're further along in your studies, you should consider creating memos from scratch - using the tools below!
For more information, review:
- Strengthening Your Memos and 10 Tips for a Better Memo from the eBook Better Business Writing: Become a More Powerful Communicator
- Memos: Use and Abuse from the eBook Writing Skills for Business
- The Memos tab in the Letters, Memos, & Business Plans section of the Writing Guide
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