When Should You Use a Memo?A memo is the right form of communication when you want to:
- Issue a directive
- Provide information
- Communicate semi-formally
Different Types of Memo DocumentsYou can use a number of different types of memos in your business.
- Internal memo – A communication between members of, or groups within, a single department
- Interoffice memo – An internal communication between two or more departments; similar to an internal memo, but with one or more added departments
- Office memo – Another name for an internal memo
- Business memo – A formal correspondence between two parties within a company
- Policy memo – A directive sent by the head of a department to all employees communicating a change in company policy
- Operational memo – Similar to a policy memo, an operational memo issues a directive to all employees discussing a change in operational procedure
- Memorandum of agreement – An agreement between two parties describing a working relationship. Unlike most memos, a memorandum of agreement is a legal document
- Memorandum of understanding – A memorandum of understanding is the same as a memorandum or agreement
Memo FormatMemos should be a concise communication with a clear purpose to a person or group of people. It typically has a specific format—but don’t worry, our free memo templates have done all of that for you, so that you don’t miss anything important.
HeadingThe heading is arguably the most important part of your memo. Without a good lead, readers may decide it’s not worth their time to read your communication. The heading typically lets readers know the date, subject, and recipient of the memo.To: This is the recipient(s) of the internal memo. Use only the first name if it’s an informal communication, and the first and last name and department if it’s more formal. If the memo is meant for an entire department, address it to that specific department .From: Memos are usually from a specific person. Use the same level of formality that you used on the recipient line.Subject: Be specific so that your readers know whether or not they are interested in reading your memo. Instead of saying “Important Information” say “Important Information regarding XYZ Company’s Stock Purchase Plan”
Body of the Memo
IntroductionThe first section is the purpose of the memo. It gives readers the context for the communication and contains a brief highlight on the reason for the memo. In the introduction to your internal memo, let readers know the situation or event you are addressing.
PurposeThe main body of the memo is going to be the message, including background information and the resolution. This section may include statistics, examples, or reasons so that readers understand how the decision was reached.
Conclusion or ActionThe final paragraph will be clear on what action is being taken so that all readers understand. It may include a directive, call to action, or what other actions can be taken.
Before Hitting Send
- Proofread your document – Since it’s a professional business document, ensure that it doesn’t contain any typos or spelling errors.
- Check your terminology – Does the document contain words, abbreviations, or acronyms that everyone will understand? Use the definition or a different word if it’s going to cause confusion with readers.
- Use white space – Make sure paragraphs aren’t so long that you lose readers. Break long paragraphs into shorter ones and consider adding bullet points or sub-headings.
- Get rid of emotion – A memo should be factual rather than emotional. Replace emotionally charged words with objective ones in order to retain your professional demeanor.
- Logical – The memo should be logical and easy to understand. Does it flow in a methodical manner or is the information all over the place? Don’t make assumptions about what background information readers bring.
- Length – A memo should not be very long. If it’s much more than a page, you should either write more succinctly or switch formats.
- Is a memo appropriate – If you are divulging something sensitive, a memo may not be the best form of communication. For example, if you are firing someone, you should probably tell them in person that they need to update their resume.
Free Memo Template ExamplesThe free memo templates below are all formatted and ready to use. Simply download the theme you want, add the appropriate text, and you are ready to send out this simple communication.
Black Line memo sample
Use this document as a brief record written as an aid to the memory: memorandum, notation, note. This template is free and can be easily modified to meet your needs.
Blue Gradient sample of memo
Simple memo design with blue gradient boxes in the header and footer.
Red Sidebar Business Memo
Formal design with red-and-black pattern sidebar.
Big title blue sidebar
Simple blue theme with big heading Memo and a sidebar for additional information or company details.
Very Simple Memorandum
Basic internal memo template in black and white.
Blue and Brown memo example
Simple elegant theme; change template colours to be inline with your corporate style.
Simple gradient business memo
Blue gradient theme with heading info inside of a simple table with gradient background.
Simple lines design
Elegant formal design for an office memo template with company address, heading, and content sections divided by black lines.
Simple elegant free memo sample
Very elegant and simple formal interoffice memo template with date, heading, and content section.
Theme with brown side bar to include additional info. Use it to remind employees about latest business news, or to provide additional information about topic of the memo.
Elegant Simple Memo sample
Simple employee memo template design suitable for any business.
Simple sidebar business memo
Simple business memo template format with document title placed into the sidebar.
Sidebar address design
Blue theme with space in sidebar (company info, news, tagline, or other information that can be the same or changed for every memo)
Memo template word 2010
This free “Memo template word 2010″ is for Microsoft Office Word 2010 and can be used as a memorandum for business. This template has space for company name, memo subject or memo title, company info / details (address, web site, or other information), and a field for date and signature.
Telepro Memo Template
Formal and simple corporate memo template with many formatting styles that also can be used as corporate letter template.
Confidential theme memo sample
Simple letter sample design for confidential information.
Simple elegant memo
Very basic memo word template with heading and current year in the header, and memo content below (to, from, subject, date, and the message itself).
Blue elegant memo
A two page memo template made with Microsoft Office Word 2007 with automatic fields
Simple confidential memo template
Use this document as a memorandum, notation, or a note on confidential information distributed within your organization.
Technova Innovation Memo Template
Simple and elegant business letter format that can be used by any company. Just add your logo, change fonts and colors. This template works with styles for fast and easy editing.
Elegant Outlined Memo
Very simple and elegant office memorandum example with border lines to separate heading from content section.
Header waves simple design
Creative design with green waves in both header and footer fo the document.
Elegant floral theme. Use this template for an announcement, or a flyer for wedding, flower shop, or any other business.
Blue waves memo letter example
Elegant, creative and artistic, yet very corporate format sample.
Technology theme with abstract blue lines in the footer; styles are used to make template editing easy.
Free memo template with a clock
Memo template to announce events, issue reminders, or any other time-related news.
Creative writing design
Informal artistic memo with funny image creating the title of the document.
Post it Sticky Note Design
Simple one-page memo template with an image of a post-it and the word “memo” in the header.
Simple theme with green gradient on the left side.
Corporate blue waves
Creative business memo with modern image of blue waves in the bottom part of the document.
Blue striped header
Simple memo design with an image of blue stripes in the background. Replace image and colors to fit your business needs.
Global company theme
Corporate technology theme with subtle blue background, waves and globe.
Corporate blue waves header
Artistic business memo with large image of waves in the header. Perfect design for single-page business document.
Wayland High School
Formal professional and neutral memo theme for nternal communication in business and academia.
Binary code technology theme
Technology memo theme with binary numbers image on the left side.
Computer mouse IT theme
Great theme for IT and computer-related news. Simple design with an image of a computer mouse in the footer.
Paper with a paper clip memo template
Memo template with an image of a paper and a paper clip in the footer of the template. Use this template for short memorandum, announcement, notice.
World map sample
Simple memo design with an image of a world map in the background.
Free memo template for with green and skyblue theme and watermark type memo heading on top
Attractive theme with green background and angular design elements in the bottom of the template.
Paper clip sidebar sample
Memo template with an image of a paper clip on the left side.
Orange header pin
Orange header background repeated on each memo page.
A simple memo with blakish blue and red theme
Red and black theme with black borders to separate memo sections.
Notebook background theme
One-page memo template with an image of a notebook in the background and repeated word “memo” in the header.
One-page simple memo, DNA theme.
Blue mountain header
Simple memo template with blue mountain scheme and blue footer gradient.