Thompson Rivers University

Writing Effective Business Emails

  Posted on: March 9, 2015

While you may not be a business person, you may find yourself writing business emails on a regular basis especially when in communication with University staff, Faculty or during a job search.  Following the structure outlined here will make it easier for your reader to respond quickly.

The key components of a business email include:

  • good subject line
  • salutation (Dear Ms. Wolfe)
  • body
  • signature block

When composing a subject line it is best to ensure it is relevant to your recipient.  Have a look at the three samples below.  Which one do you think would be most effective?

  1. “Need Help!”
  2. “Need help with registration.”
  3. “Please help with ENGL 1110 registration.”

The body of your email should follow the same guidelines as those used for written letters.  Short emails with a single topic and a clearly stated call to action will be answered more quickly than longer emails with multiple topics.

Last, but not least, you should always include a signature block, so that the recipient can easily identify you and assist you more quickly.  As a student, your signature block could include your name and your program of study, as well as your phone number.


Jane Doe
Thompson Rivers University Biology Student
Cell: 250-333-1111


You can find more information on how to improve your email writing here: