Do you know what a letter of transmittal is? It is a document which usually comes with another larger or more significant document, usually attached to explain what it’s for. It is typically made to give the recipient the particular context in which the more significant document is to be placed or used. Aside from that, it would also serve as a documentation for the sender that something was sent and received.
A good letter of transmittal example is usually very short. The first paragraph would be a description of what has been sent along with the purpose of sending it. For longer letters, you may run through all the most important elements of the larger document, using a few sentences. You can also write down other useful information for the recipient. These kinds of letters are frequently wrapped up with a short paragraph which would establish goodwill. This is done by giving a compliment or a statement of gratitude to the recipient.
Generally, a letter of transmittal is for:
Normally this kind of letter is made to communicate information in writing, whether it’s information about an important document, equipment or other such items which are sent from one point to another. This article is all about these kinds for letters, from the components, the purpose and other important information that would guide you as you are making your own document.
You would have a better idea of what is a letter of transmittal if you know what the important components are. There is no specific letter of transmittal format but as long as you know the basic elements, you’d be able to make one for yourself. Here are the important components of this letter:
This is usually your address. Make sure to place your whole address as the header of your letter.
Write the date you had written your letter before you start writing it. This is important so that the recipient will know when you had prepared the letter and the document or item which you have sent.
The next thing you’d have to include is the address of the recipient.
This is usually a short greeting or introduction which is addressed to the recipient of the letter and the item it is attached to.
There are usually 4 subparts for the body of the letter:
The conclusion would contain your final words about the document or item or statements of goodwill.
This would contain any other important notes which you would like to convey to the recipient.
Simple components, but they would have a great impact on the recipient and would make your letter a lot more effective. Now that you know all these components, we can discuss the purpose of making or writing such a letter.
If you’ve already seen a letter of transmittal example, you may have noticed that although it is brief, it was well thought out. The main purpose of making such a letter is to communicate with the recipient of the letter and of the document or item, it is attached to. When made well, the letter should:
It’s a simple and brief document but it is important for both the sender and the recipient. To be able to make a letter of transmittal template for yourself, it would also be a lot helpful for you to know some important things about it, which will be discussed in the next section.
The letter of transmittal is a document which would give the initial information about a larger or more significant document which it is attached to. The sender would use the letter to transmit the document it is attached to, to a recipient, hence the name. This type of letter is more commonly used in the workplace as important documents and items are sent from one point to another. To be able to make a good letter, let’s discuss some important things about it, which should be taken into consideration.
This letter would serve as an introduction to another document, which is usually more important. Such documents include, but are not limited to:
The recipient would read through the letter to establish the context in which to view or use the document which it is attached to. The document could have been sent as an answer to a request, as a requirement or as a professional courtesy.
The sender could also use the letter to go over important policies and assurances which are related to the document which has been sent. Either that or the letter can be used to share sensitive or confidential information which isn’t included in the document but is related to it. Finally, it would serve as documentation for the sender, proving that he/she had transmitted something and it has been received.
This kind of letter is usually printed out on a letterhead of the company or the organization. The sender would have to use a standard letter format, which would have the proper page size and margins. It should also include all the important components (which were discussed in the previous section) for it to be effective. It should also end with the signature of the sender, the job title and any notations which would signify any other enclosed documents.
These kinds of letters are short documents, usually just one page in length which would contain only three or four paragraphs. These paragraphs should flow logically, starting from the introduction, to the explanation and finally to the closing. If there are more important things to be highlighted or discussed, the letter may be longer or more heavily formatted than the usual.
The Tone and Content
A letter of transmittal may be simple and brief, but it is actually a formal business document. The very first paragraph would contain the following:
Aside from that, the sender may add in any instructions for the recipient, which would either be to forward the document to another person, to notify the sender when the document has been received or any other specific instructions.
The next paragraphs which would follow should provide explanations and instructions in more detail. Then the last paragraph would conclude the letter with a statement of thanks or goodwill as well as contact information of the sender. The sender can also include an offer of assistance in case anything is unclear or the recipient has any questions.
The Correct Use
Different organizations and companies have their own policies and procedures for creating and using these kinds of letters. The sender should make sure that the right person would sign the letter (usually someone in authority). This is especially important if the letter would be attached to a document which contains sensitive information or if the content of the document would require a specific level of authority for release or approval.
This kind of letter would be written and copies would have to be made of it. The original letter should be placed right on top of the accompanying document. It should not be attached as a part of the document or included in its table of contents. Then the copies or duplicates of the letter should be kept by the sender as documentation.
Since there are cases when the letter would contain confidential or sensitive information, it could be a very powerful and important tool for communication. Such sensitive information could be a password, a protected file which contains an electronic document or other relevant items, so the sender has to make sure that the appropriate recipient receives it.
It can also be used to call the attention of the recipient to the fact that the some of the information in the document may have been overlooked.
Even though it’s short, the letter can be used to introduce the document it is attached to in a variety of ways. The sender may show the recipient that the document which it is attached to actually meets the goals and expectations which have been previously outlined.
The letter can be used to discuss how the information in the document was collected and who was involved in creating the document. therefore giving credit to the people who were not actually mentioned in the document itself. The letter can also be used to instruct the recipient to perform an action, through a suggestion or a request, all with regards to the document which it is attached to.
This short document should not contain any technical or detailed information. It should be short, simple and friendly. Towards the end of the letter, try to consider making a statement which would convey to the recipient that you or the agency you represent are available to be contacted in the future, to clarify anything or answer any questions. That is why it is important to include your contact information.
On the other hand, if you are asking the recipient to act in response to the document which the letter is attached to, you should provide a date or deadline for the recipient to act.
The Time Frame
The letter should be sent at the same time you’d be sending the document which it introduces. Never send it ahead of time or after sending the document. Not only that, you would have to treat the letter as a document different from the larger one and not as part of it.
Knowing these important things and considerations would definitely guide you as you are creating a letter of transmittal format. To help you further, let’s look at some helpful tips you can apply before we go to the final section, which are steps in actually writing the letter.
To be able to write a good letter of transmittal example, you may need to learn all you can especially if you are writing one for the first time. But actually, even if you have been writing such letters for some time now, these tips can still help you out and make you better at writing such letters.
As you can see, these tips are really helpful and would serve as good guides for you as you are writing your letter. Now let’s go to the final section, which is actually creating your own letter or template.
Writing a letter of transmittal is quite easy since it is a short document. It is important as it serves an important purpose, especially in the transmittal process from within or outside companies and organizations. Take a note of these steps:
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