Layne is an active freelance writer. She enjoys staying up to date on trends, media, and emerging topics.
Out-of-Office/Auto-Responder Messages for Work
If you are going on vacation or taking leave from work for personal reasons—illness, bereavement, moving, travel, etc.—here are some great professional messages to use for email and Slack. If you aren't going to be available by phone or email, you will want to set up an away or out-of-office message using the following guidelines:
- Include the dates that you will be out
- Cover your most frequented platforms
- Leave information about how to escalate an inquiry
- Leave information about who can be reached in the event of an emergency
- Provide emergency contact (depending on your industry)
I will be out of the office from [Date] to [Date]. All inquiries may be forwarded to [Contact].
I am out of the office from [Date] through [Date] and will return [Date].
For immediate assistance, please contact [Name] at [Contact] (email, phone, etc.). I will respond to your inquiry as soon as possible.
I am out of the office for the week and will return on [Date]. For immediate assistance, please contact [Name] at [Contact].
Thank you for your inquiry. I am away from the computer from [Date] to [Date] and will be returning on [Date].
If this is an emergency and you require immediate assistance, I can be reached at [Phone]. Thank you for your patience.
Thank you for your message. We are currently unavailable for the week of [Date] and will respond to your message by [Date]. We appreciate your patience.
Thank you for your message. If you are writing about [Topic], please contact [Name] at [Contact] with your inquiry.
Thank you for contacting us. If you are emailing about [Topic], please contact [Name] at [Contact]. If you are writing about [Topic], more information can be found at [Link].
We are out of the office from [Date] to [Date]. Our team will be back answering questions on [Date]. In the interim, please check out our FAQ (provide link) for answers to common questions.
We will get back to you as soon as possible.
Funny Out-of-Office Examples
Depending on the nature of your work culture or clients, a funny out-of-office message might be called for. If this is true for you, consider the following examples:
Our team is out for the week having fun. We appreciate that you want to hear from us, and we'll get back to you as soon as we return. We hope you have an awesome week. Don't forget to look for a postcard in the mail from us.
Thank you for your message. I'm currently beachside and it's 5 o'clock somewhere. Yes, I wish you could join me. I'll be back in the office on [Date], but I really don't want to think about that right. If you have any immediate questions, you can contact [Name] at [Contact].
Guess what? I'm playing ditch . . . that means I'm out of the office and I won't see this message until [Date]. I'm glad you reached out to me nontheless. If it's urgent, contact [Name] at [Contact].
Have a great week,
I'm not near my computer right now. I'm off vacationing and trying to regain my sanity. I promise I'll be back by [Date], and I promise I'll be a lot more rested. Have a good week and don't miss me too much.
Helpful Out-of-Office Messages
Thank you for contacting us. We are out of the office this week, but happy to direct you to our helpful knowledge base (provide link). Should you need more information, please contact [Name] at [Contact] for additional support. We appreciate your patience.
We're away from the computer right now and will be responding to all inquiries on [Date]. Thank you for your patience. If there is something that you require an immediate answer for, please contact our help desk at [Contact].
Thank you for your understanding.
I'm currently out of the office from [Date] to [Date]. If you need immediate assistance, please contact [Name] at [Contact]. In addition, you can visit our FAQ at [Website]. I will get back to you by [Date] and I appreciate your patience.
Setting Up Out-of-Office Vacation Reply on Google (Email)
You can set up an away message easily on Google (and via other email accounts) which will be set to start and expire on the dates that you choose.
- Log in to your Google account
- Click the gear icon in the upper right and select "Settings."
- Click "Vacation responder"
- Turn "Vacation responder" on
- Select the date range you would like it to start and expire on
- Fill out the subject field and message field
- Decide if you only want your contacts and people within the company to see your response by checking the boxes below.
Slack Away Message Statuses
Here are some ideas for setting an away status on slack while you are on vacation. For directions on how to set up your away status, read the paragraph below.
- I'm away from the computer from [Date] to [Date].
- I will have limited access to Slack from [Date] to [Date].
- I'm away from [Date] to [Date].
- I'm away until [Date]. Please contact [Name] for support.
- Thanks for your message. I'm away until [Date]. Please reach out to [Name] if you have an immediate question.
- I'm out until [Date], see you next week!
How to Set Up an Away Message on Slack
- Click on your image icon in the upper right-hand corner.
- Select "Set a Status"; you can choose a preset icon (like the palm tree) or not choose an icon and simply free type.
- Enter your message in the text field.
- Select the "clear after" date and time.
- Set your status.
- Make sure you set yourself as "away" in the even that you choose to log on discreetly.
© 2020 Layne Holmes
Layne Holmes (author) from Bend, Oregon on September 16, 2020:
Hi Liz, definitely agree that this is helpful for when someone goes away. It encourages patience on the messenger's end.
Liz Westwood from UK on September 16, 2020:
This is a very useful tool for anyone planning on time away from the office. I always appreciate an acknowledgement to my attempt to make contact with associates.