Out of office messages are a crucial part of business communications. When you’re on vacation, out sick, or not in the office for any reason, you can set up an auto-response message that replies to each new email, letting them know that you’re not in. Out of office messages are useful for communicating information and letting the recipient know how to get in touch with you. We’ll look at what out of office messages are and some examples to help you create your auto reply.
What are Out of Office Messages?
An Out of Office message is an auto-response that you can set up from your email client if you happen to be out of the office because you bought a ticket to a conference on the cheapest day to fly. You can have it running for a specific period of time and add exact dates so that auto replies will only go out during those dates. The out of office message will automatically be sent to incoming messages during the dates you decide to run the automatic message.
Why Out of Hours Messages are so Important
Out of hours messages are vital for various reasons and can communicate important information to recipients quickly. Don’t forget to look at some of the small business voicemail greeting examples for a complete message. Some reasons why an out of office message is important are:
- Personal touch: No one likes to feel like their emails are being ignored, but the out of office message lets the recipient know that you are not in and that you will respond as soon as you can when you’re back.
- Lead generation: If you have new clients or leads coming in, you want to ensure that you don’t lose momentum while out of office. You can add a mobile number so they have someone to get in touch with and give them contact information for someone else who can assist.
- Follow up: An out of office message gives the recipients more detail on when to follow up with you again. If they know your starting date and return date, they can get in touch with you then rather than emailing you repeatedly.
- Less pressure: There is less pressure on you to respond to everyone or let them know that you are busy with automatic replies. People know exactly when you’re coming back and how to get in touch with you or someone else for urgent matters, so you won’t need to constantly check your email when you’re out of the office.
What to Include in an Out of Office Message
The out of office message itself can contain information on:
- Why you’re out of the office
- When you’ll be back, including date range for when you are out of the office
- Other ways to reach you such as a cell phone number if applicable
- Other points of contact the recipient can reach in your absence, including another contact email address, phone number and/or business website.
What to Avoid in an Out of Hours Message
- Avoid adding too much detail: It might be tempting to add a long explanation such as you are in a lunch meeting, but it’s best to avoid it. Instead, keep your auto office email message short and concise.
- Not including other contact information: If possible, there should always be another point of contact included in the message to know who to follow up with if needed.
- Including incorrect information: Before leaving, double-check everything in your out of office response, including the vacation responder, to check that time frame, such as the start date and end date you are unavailable.
- Check formatting: Depending on your email client, messages can sometimes appear with formatting issues. Make sure to check and see how your OOO message looks on mobile and desktop before it goes out to clients and team members.
Out of Office Message Examples to Use
If you’re not sure how to structure your away from office message, we’ve come up with a sample out of officemessage for different situations to help.
Simple Out of Office Message Example
Thank you for your message. I am away from the office without email access until (date), I will respond when I return to the office. I appreciate your understanding.
Professional Out of Office Message
Thank you for your message. I am out of the office from (date) to (date) with limited access to email. For immediate assistance, please get in touch with me on my cell phone (number) or my secretary XX at (phone number).
Funny Out of Office Messages
Thanks for the message, but this is a robot responding to you as (name) is currently out of the office and trying really hard not to check their office email. They’ll be back by (date), so feel free to get in touch then!
The Email Robot
Out of Office Autoresponder Email Messages
This is an office autoresponder email message as I am unavailable and not checking email. I will respond to your email when I return to the office.
This is an automatic OOO message as I am out of the office until (date). I will respond to your message promptly upon my return. If you need immediate assistance, please get in touch with XX at (email) for more details.
Out of Office Sick Message Example
Thank you for your message, but I am currently on sick leave and unable to attend to email. If you need immediate assistance, don’t hesitate to get in touch with the office at XX.
Thank you for your understanding
Vacation Out of Office Message
Thank you for your email. I am currently on vacation and unable to respond to phone calls or messages until I return on (date). If your matter is urgent, you can contact XX for assistance at (email). Alternatively, you can email at (generic company email), and someone from the team will be in touch.
Maternity Leave Out of Hours Message
Thank you for your message. I am currently on maternity leave without access to emails or phone calls until (date). If your matter is urgent, please contact (email). Alternatively, you can reach out to the wider team at (team email), and someone from the company will assist you as soon as possible.
All the best,
Use These Out of Office Message Examples to Create Your Own
The out of office messages provided above are just a starting point for creating your own. When writing your own message, think about what clients and team members will need to know and who would be the best person on the team to guide them in your absence. These examples can give you an idea of how much information to include (or exclude) and the important components that go into creating the message.
More in: Business Message Examples, Customer Satisfaction, Operational Messages