Example Letter #1
As anticipated, the recent merger with Doe Associates has resulted in overlap of some functions. Consequently, it is necessary to reduce our work force in those areas in which we have significant duplication of effort.
Effective June 1, the publications and personnel divisions will decrease by 40%. Those affected will be notified by May 15. Our personnel office will hold a series of meetings at the end of May to discuss unemployment insurance benefits and to help those affected secure new jobs.
We sincerely appreciate your contributions and regret that this action has become necessary.
Example Letter #2
We are sorry to inform you that Doe will be reducing staff by 20% over the next month due to decreased demand for our product. We will notify the affected employees with their next paychecks. Laid-off employees will receive one month's severance pay.
On Friday, November 29, at 2:30 p.m., a meeting for affected employees will be held in the large conference room on the second floor. We will discuss severance benefits, including health insurance, retirement plan distributions, and unemployment benefits. We urge all interested to attend.
We truly appreciate your years of service to Doe Corporation. Unfortunately, this layoff was unavoidable. We wish you success in your future endeavors.
Example Letter #3
Doe Auto Performance is feeling the crunch of these economic times. Most consumers lack the disposable income we count on for our bread and butter.
Effective at the end of this pay period we will experience a 50% reduction in staff, right across seniority lines.
Jane Doe can help you with such matters as the continuation of your health plans and details of the severance package. We very much regret that we must take this step. With any luck we will be recalling some or all of you within the next few months. Until then, we wish you well in your endeavors.
Example Letter #4
It has become necessary for us to announce a temporary layoff of all of our production staff. Demand for our product has slowed, as it usually does at this time of year. Beginning November 25, the plant will be closed until January 2. Health insurance and other employee benefits will continue during the layoff. We expect to resume our normal production schedule in January. We appreciate the hard work and dedication of all our employees and anticipate working together again in the new year.
Write Your Letter Step-by-Step
Explain immediately why the layoff is taking place.
Explain who the layoffs will affect and when.
The change will take effect on June 1. Some workers may be transferred to positions in our subsidiary in Springfield, but most will receive layoff notices on May 31. All part-time sales staff who joined us for the Christmas rush will be laid off after taking inventory on January 15.
Explain such things as the portability of health insurance, unemployment benefits, union policies, help in finding other employment, and whether there may be a recall to work.
Express appreciation for service.