Write a Complaint Letter to a Subordinate • Letter Templates and Guide

How to write this letter:

1State the problem clearly and briefly, without directly blaming anyone. Using passive sentences that omit reference to the responsible party is sometimes helpful. Make your tone positive and direct.
2Explain what has been done or what you expect to be done to correct the problem. Request a reasonable, possible solution.
3Without dwelling on the problem, explain the benefits of this corrective action.
4Close with a positive statement showing confidence in the reader, or requesting support or cooperation.

Tips

Be candid and respectful. Avoid saying things that allude to your position or that could be construed as condescending or overbearing.

Example Letter #1

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I noticed that the finishing work on the last batch of picture frames was unusually rough. I know the quality of work that you personally produce is superb, so I am wondering what the problem may be in your group. Would you please monitor the production of this next order very carefully to see where the problem is?

As you know, careful attention to quality control is what has helped us gain our large market share, and we can't afford to let up now when we hope to expand abroad.

Thank you in advance for following through on this. Please let me know what you find out.

Example Letter #2

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Last week, after everyone had gone home, I found trash on the floor, crumbs on the desks, and even a drink leaking out of its paper cup.

Please do not put your drinks on the desks because the liquid could damage your computer, and bring only spill-proof drinks into the office area. Also, if you must eat, make sure the crumbs do not land on your keyboard and that you clean up after yourself.

If we all follow these simple guidelines, we can have a more pleasant work environment and can reduce the possibility of damaging our computers. I trust you will help me keep the office clean and orderly.

Example Letter #3

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I understand that the building was left unlocked last night. By my count, this has happened three times in the last month. To solve what could be a very expensive problem, I am establishing a policy where someone will be responsible each week for locking all doors and windows at the end of the day. An open door or window is an invitation to theft. I have attached the May calendar, showing weekly assignments. If you have a conflict with your assignment, please let me know immediately. Thank you for helping me resolve this problem.

Write Your Letter Step-by-Step

1

State the problem clearly and briefly, without directly blaming anyone. Using passive sentences that omit reference to the responsible party is sometimes helpful. Make your tone positive and direct.

Example Sentences

Example Phrases

2

Explain what has been done or what you expect to be done to correct the problem. Request a reasonable, possible solution.

Example Sentences

Example Phrases

3

Without dwelling on the problem, explain the benefits of this corrective action.

Example Sentences

Example Phrases

4

Close with a positive statement showing confidence in the reader, or requesting support or cooperation.

Example Sentences

Example Phrases