Taking a few weeks or months off from work to tackle a new addition is an exciting time and can be seamless if you plan and prepare. One of the things you might want to do is create an informal maternity leave email to let your clients, contacts and colleagues know where you are and who can help them with their question.
The last thing you want is for your messages to stagnate and your contacts to wonder where you are. A well-designed out-of-office email will automatically respond to email senders to let them know some important information:
That you are on maternity leave
It will be like the time you hope to return to
You are now available to respond
Contact for emergency assistance
As long as you include those things in your email, you should get paid. It’s up to you to decide how detailed you want to be and the tone of your message. This will depend on the type of company you work for and with whom you correspond most often.
Here are some thoughts and examples to help you craft the perfect maternity leave out of office so you can turn off the notifications and focus on your new bundle of joy.
Share your news
The first part of your message—and your subject line—should announce that you’re on vacation. It’s up to you whether you want to say it’s maternity leave or if you want to be more vague, but most people will be happy to know you’re not working for pleasure.
Suggest a return date
Email senders won’t necessarily know how far you are in your maternity leave, so instead of saying you’ll be back in six weeks, try giving a preferred date. You might say something like, “I hope to be back in early spring or mid-September.”
This will help the sender decide whether to wait for you to return or find someone else to help them.
Check your accessibility
Many new parents choose to go completely offline for a week or two, but then gradually start working from home on occasion. If that’s something you do, let your agents know how often you check email, whether it’s once a week, rarely, or at night. You can also ask them to include a commentary so you can easily clarify important messages.
If you decide to take a real vacation and you won’t connect without work, then you can just say something like, “I hope to connect again when I get back.”
Be specific about who can help you
If you can’t fit emails in between your new parenting duties, then make sure your birth leaves an out-of-office email list for others who may have access to the sender’s needs.
Maybe just one person is submitting on your behalf, or you can include names of people in different departments. Include the names, titles, e-mails, and phone numbers of your contacts and quickly define the types of issues each will handle.
It might look like this: “For more ordering information, contact Sally Gordon at [contact info here]. If you need to make an appointment, Sam Jenkins [contact info here] can help. For full details contact Joe Perkins at [contact info here].
A note about the sound
Depending on the complexity of your business or role, you might want to share a few details about the new baby, a link to an online cam, or a joke or two. However, if you work in a more traditional industry (for example, banking or law), it may be more appropriate to stick to a completely professional, completely business-like tone.
Out of office maternity leave template
Sorry for missing you! I am home on maternity leave until mid-November. Although I intend to check email from time to time, if you have an urgent need, please contact one of the following people who will be happy to help:
For immediate assistance regarding an ongoing project, call or email Matt Johnson at 555-123-4567.
I hope to get in touch with you when I get back.
Until then, good luck!
Next nurture your business
Writing an out-of-office maternity leave email will be among the last things on your mind as you prepare to welcome a new family member into your world. Now you can check that off your list. Need extra help breaking into the industry? Join Monster for free today. As a member, you’ll get career advice and job search advice delivered straight to your inbox.