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Business Letters and Memos: Basic Features of a Memo

A memo (from the Latin memorandum, meaning "remembered") is a message from one person to another or others within an organization. It can be sent on paper or by electronic mail. A memo often reports briefly on an action, raises a question, or asks permission to follow a course of action. Usually it addresses a specific question or issue in a quick, focused way, conveying information as directly as possible in clear paragraphs or numbered points.

Many computer programs now provide a standard program for memo format, so all the design and headings are done for you. All you do is fill in what you want to say. If you do not have such a program, follow these steps:
1. Begin the memo with headings such as To, From, Date, and Subject; such headings are frequently capitalized and in boldface type.
2. In the first sentence of the memo, tell readers what your point is. Then briefly explain, giving reasons or details.
3. Single-space the memo; if your message is long, divide it into short paragraphs, or include numbered or bulleted lists and headings to organize and draw attention to essential points.
4. If you type the memo for someone else, make sure that person's name appears on the From line, and type your own initials (in lowercase letters) below the last line of the text.
5. At the bottom of the memo, type cc: followed by a name or names, to indicate additional recipients of the memo.
See also
Basic Features of a Business Letter
Requirements of a Business Letter
Basic Features of a Memo