Your English Out-of-Office Reply

Even when we are away from our keyboards, out-of-office replies help maintain professional relationships. First impressions stick!

The secret? A thoughtful out-of-office reply can generate positive feelings in those reaching out.

How?

  1. Start with a warm greeting. “Thanks for getting in touch” sets a friendly tone.
  2. Clearly state your absence and response time.
  3. Offer an alternative contact—it shows consideration and professionalism.

    Your message could look something like this:

    Subject: Out of office

    Hello [Sender’s name],

    Thank you for contacting me! I’m currently out of the office attending a conference in London. But I’ll be back in the office on [date of return] and will respond to your message then.

    If you need help before I come back, please contact my colleague, [colleague’s name]. You can email them at [colleague’s email] or call them at [colleague’s phone].

    In the meantime, I hope you have a great week! 

    Best wishes,
    [Your name]

    Or even this:

    Dear [Sender’s name],

    I appreciate your message! Right now, I’m attending a conference in London, and will be unavailable until I return on [date of return]. I’ll make sure to get in touch with you as soon as I’m back.

    If you have anything urgent, please reach out to my colleague, [colleague’s name], at [colleague’s email/phone]. They’ll be happy to help you.

    I’m looking forward to catching up with you soon.

    Best wishes,

    [Your name]

    Now it’s your turn

    What does your perfect out-of-office reply look like?

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    Foto Christine Sparks

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