20+ professional out of office text examples

[Update]: This article was first published on April 23, 2018. It’s been updated with new examples and solutions for managing out of office messages across company.

Have you ever wondered what to write in your out of office messages? You have come to the right place! Sometimes it is just difficult to think of a perfect text for your out of office, right off the bat. That is why we thought it would be nice to share some good out of office examples and inspirations. Below you will find sample messages for any occasion. But first, let’s look at the basic information you should always (conditions apply!) have in your out of office message and which you should avoid.

P.S. The guide below is focused on good examples of out of office messages. If you want to learn more about managing automatic responses in Microsoft 365, see our in-depth guide.

Out of Office examples

Table of contents:

What to include in an out of office message

There is some information which just needs to find its way into any out of office message. You may think this list is obvious, but it is easy to forget something when you are in a hurry:

  • Leave date and return date – while it is crucial to include the return date, it is usually better to include both dates, as it lets people know how long you will be away. Think about how many emails you have to read after a three-day absence. Now think about how many emails will be waiting for you if you go away for two months. In most cases, it might take more than a day before you are even able to read and reply to all important emails sitting in your inbox. Your recipients would like to know when they might get the actual response from you.
  • Contact details – sometimes people may want to contact someone in a different department. If you include your job title and some other personal info, you might save the day. If you do not add your basic personal information, you might leave people waiting for your return when they could have contacted the right person earlier. Moreover, you should include alternative contact information. It will be helpful if someone has a very urgent matter, and they simply cannot wait for your return. You should always include an email address of someone who covers for you in your absence. Alternatively, if you are never really away from work – write how to reach you.
    A professional email signature with contact information should do the trick in any case.
  • Will you be monitoring your mailbox? – sometimes, when you are out of office, you may be able to check your incoming emails from time to time. If you can and do – include this information in your out of office message. This will give your out of office message a professional vibe. But if you are not going to look at emails when you are gone – do not give others any false hope.
  • The reason for absence – now this one is tricky. You should include the reason for your absence (vacation/ business travel), but you should avoid being specific. While informing that you are attending an international conference is a good idea, giving details on your vacation is not professional.
  • I’m sorry – well, probably it is not your fault that you are not there; however, it does not cost you anything to be polite. Saying “sorry I missed you!” is a great way to show that you care.

What to delete from out of office messages

Some out of office messages are just irritating. Not just because they mean you might have to wait for an answer – this goes without saying. Sometimes, those automatic responses upset people because of what is written in them. Below you will find a list of what you should delete from your out of office messages.

  • Details – you might be surprised, but most people are not that interested in where you are going to spend your vacation, with whom and what you are going to do. The same goes for detailed information about your sick leave. There are different reactions to such details in your out of office messages, but irritation or indifference are the most frequent. Happy feelings are highly unlikely.
  • Self-pity – some people do not even realize that they include self-pity in their out of office messages. One of the most popular phrases that gets people going is “After months of hard work I have finally managed to go on my annual leave.” Or “I am so happy I am not in the office!” You would be better off if you keep those thoughts to yourself.
  • Typos – I mean I know you are in a hurry, but please, read your text after you finish it. Those messages are short by design and if there are typos or grammar issues – you might not be taken seriously. That’s why it’s good to use a message template, carefully read and checked for errors.
  • I’m not there/ I’m not at work – if your message has those few words and no more, it’s better not to write anything. The reason is simple – it does not help your recipients at all.
  • Limited access to email – it is a popular phrase which, if you think about it, does not tell you anything. While most people do not mind it, it is not helpful either. If you use it as a polite way of saying “I will not read any emails,” you might be better off writing just that, rather than giving false hope.

There are exceptions to some of the rules above – you probably can be much more informal in your internal messages. In fact, some of your colleagues might be interested why exactly you are not there.

Out of office examples

Below, I present some out of office templates for different occasions. You might find them useful if you can’t find the right words or don’t have the time to write your perfect out of office message.

All-purpose out of office messages

The examples below should work in every situation – they do not go into details but tell you everything they should say.

I am truly sorry, but you have just missed me – I’ll be back by {Date}. During my absence, feel free to contact {Name} at {E-mail}. He/She will be able to assist you with any issue or question you might have.

-Out of Office alert-
Dear recipient, I am out of office from {Date} to {Date} due to {reason}. Sorry about that. I will surely reply to you as soon as I come back. In the meantime you can contact:
[email protected] for sales inquiries,
[email protected] if you need technical assistance.

Thanks for your email.
I am on leave until {Date} and will not have any access to my email. If your matter is urgent, you can contact our team{link}. Otherwise, I’ll come back to you as soon as I get back in the office.

Out of office for vacation or annual leave

Probably the most common one – you might be as healthy as a horse for years, but from time to time everyone goes on a vacation:

Thank you for contacting me, but unfortunately, I am on vacation. I will return on {Date} and will be happy to assist you with any issue you might have. If you require immediate assistance, please contact the Customer Service at [email protected].

As much as I would like to give you a quick reply, I cannot. I am on annual leave from {Date} to {Date} and I will not be able to check my mailbox regularly until I return. That is why I strongly recommend you contact {Name} at {email} for a quicker response.
Kind regards,

Out of office for sick leave

Sick leaves are a common thing in pretty much any workplace. And when someone gets ill out of a sudden, an out of office message is a must. If you get ill but manage to set up your automatic response before leaving, then it’s great. However, in most cases, those out of office messages are set up by someone else. Just like I mentioned before, giving details about your absence isn’t the best of all ideas, especially if you’re out of office because of sick leave. When you edit an out of office message for your sick leave, keep in mind that it’s common for those leaves to be extended. Recipient doesn’t have to know any nasty details, but mentioning sick leave is a signal for them that an extension of the out of office period is possible.

I’m out of office until {Date} because of sick leave. In the meantime, you can contact my colleague at {Email}.
Take care!

I’m currently unavailable, without any access to my email. I hope to return by {Date}. I’ll get back to you as soon as possible.
If you need to consult anything before I get back, {Name} at {Email} will be more than happy to assist you.
All the best

Out of Office for parental leave

How is this one special? I mean, besides the fact that the miracle of birth is involved. You must be sure to get everything just right – those messages are usually there for a long time.

I have gone on maternity/paternity leave. I will not have access to my mailbox between {Date} and {Date}. During my absence {Name} covers for me. You can contact her/him by sending an email to {Email}
Best regards,

Out of office for a public holiday

When you are away for a public holiday, it’s probably not just you who is gone. That is why it is especially good to have a similar OOF for all employees:

Dear reader,
Thank you for your email, but our company is out of office, celebrating {holiday}.
Unfortunately, it means we will not be able to send you any reply until {Date}.
We apologize for the delay but wish you a wonderful holiday season.
Best regards,

Out of office for business travel and training

If you leave your office for a conference, you should be able to receive emails and respond to them, but you should make others aware that your responses might be delayed:

I am at the {event name} from {Date} to {Date}. I will be sure to check my inbox between sessions, but it might take a bit longer for me to get back to you. If you cannot wait, call me at {phone number}.

Dear recipient,
I am currently attending a training session. As a result, my reply might take a bit longer than usual. I apologize for that. I will be able to respond in a timelier manner starting from {Date}.

Autoresponder when working remotely

When you are working remotely, you could say that you are “out of office” permanently. Keep in mind, that this out of office message type is not something an individual user normally sets up for themselves. However, it’s a common practice to set up automatic responses for helpdesk, support, or any other shared mailbox in a company. This way, the recipient knows their email didn’t disappear into a black hole, but will be handled. Because of the recently forced migration to hybrid and remote work model, you might think about introducing some changes into such an autoresponder.

If you have switched to remote work, it is only fair to inform your recipients what to expect: either that they might expect a slightly longer response time, or despite the current situation, it’s business as usual. Mind not to make your autoreply too long, though:

Dear user,
Thank you for your message. We wanted to let you know that we’ve received your request and we are on it. We’ll come back to you as soon as we can, which usually takes less than {number} hours. If your matter is urgent, call us at {Phone}.
Kindest regards,

Thanks for your email
Because of an increased number of requests and fewer available technicians due to {Reason}, you could experience a longer response time. Still, we should be able to get back to you within {time}.
In urgent matters, you can call us at {Phone}. Also, if you are searching for specific information, make sure to take a look at our Frequently Asked Questions {link} and our extensive Knowledge Base {Link}.
Best regards,

Out of home office message examples

When your home becomes your office, the term “out of office” isn’t accurate anymore. However, your recipients don’t need to know that you are usually working from home so you can safely use any general-purpose auto reply. Adding “out of home office” to your autoresponder isn’t helpful for your recipients in any way. Take a look below for examples of out of office messages you can use, regardless of where you usually work from:

Dear Sir/Madam,
I’m currently unavailable and have no access to email. I’ll be back on {Date} and will come back to you as soon as I can. If you require immediate assistance, please contact {Name} at {Email}.
Kind regards,

Hi there,
This is an automatic response. At the moment, I’m not available and will not be able to provide you with a swift reply. I’ll be back at {Date} and will contact you then. If you need help urgently, call our office at {Phone}

Out of office when your emails are forwarded

In some cases, especially when you are out of office for a long time (e.g. due to parental leave, or long-term sick leave), your emails will be forwarded to another mailbox. Thanks to that, no crucial emails will be waiting for your return. While this is a common practice, it doesn’t always go together with informing an original sender. And it’s very important! If the sender gets an automatic response with information that their email has been forwarded, they know that they don’t need to do anything to get to someone who is currently at the office. Besides, it’s suspicious if you send a message to a certain contact of yours and, out of a sudden, get a response from someone else. Take a look at some examples of out of office messages when emails forwarding takes place:

This is an automatic message. We wanted to let you know that {Name} is currently unavailable, but your email has been forwarded to {Name} at {Email}. They will get back to you shortly.
Best regards,

I will be out of office for quite a bit, but don’t worry – your message was automatically forwarded to {Email}. Someone will answer you as soon as possible.
Stay safe!

Funny out of office messages

It’s unlikely that you will use them for your external contacts, but you might give your colleagues a laugh, as long as you keep it in good taste – not everyone shares the same sense of humor, after all.

Hello there, it’s {Name}’s autoresponder. {Name} is not there until {Date}
As much as I’d like to help you – I can’t. I’m too busy deleting all the important emails and contacts from {name}’s mailbox. I’m sure he/she will get back to you as soon as possible. That is if I spare this email. If your matter is urgent, I would try contacting {Name} at {email}.
Have a very nice day,

I am truly sorry, but I will be out of office on {Date}. You still can call me at 1-900-call-me-now or {Phone Number} (rates may apply).
Parental advisory – explicit content.

Hello there,
I appreciate you trying to reach me, unfortunately – I am out of office sunbathing. I will be back at {Date}. It will probably take me two additional days to get used to my office and dig through hundreds of new urgent emails, before I get back to you.
Or you could contact {email} for immediate assistance. Just saying.

Manage out of office messages

But have you ever thought what can happen if someone forgets to turn on their auto-responder and does not forward emails to anyone? It may cause serious problems if someone is in a hurry and does not even realize that their email just sits there in somebody’s mailbox, sad and unread. Fortunately, there is an easy way to set up out of office messages for other users, or even for a whole company at once.

Microsoft 365

CodeTwo Email Signatures 365 is a cloud service that allows you to manage email signatures, disclaimers and marketing campaigns for any number of Microsoft 365 users. It also comes with the Autoresponder feature that lets you create fully-branded automatic responses, configure different auto-reply messages for different teams (Customer Support, Sales, Marketing, etc.), set up out of office messages for other users, forward incoming messages to another user, and more. Automatic replies are sent based on user-defined rules, for example when you receive emails from specific senders or during specific hours or days, or when incoming emails contain specific keywords or phrases.

Learn more about CodeTwo Autoresponder for Microsoft 365 and try it for free

Exchange Server

CodeTwo Exchange Rules Pro is a feature-packed email signature and mail flow management tool. One of its many capabilities is configuration of automatic replies, so you can make sure that every absent user is sending an out of office message and that it maintains a professional tone. You can automatically personalize OOF messages for all employees without touching their devices. Apart from that, you get much greater control over out of office emails. While traditional out of office messages are text-only, automatic responses from a mail server added by CodeTwo Exchange Rules can include hyperlinks, images and more. Thanks to that, you can maintain a high level of professional communication and comply with your visual identity even with automatic responses. Try it – it might save your day!

Learn more about the automatic reply feature in CodeTwo Exchange Rules Pro

CodeTwo Email Signatures 365 is the first and only email signature solution that’s fully Microsoft 365 Certified (the whole infrastructure reviewed & pen-tested by Microsoft). It's an Azure-based cloud service that supports all devices and email apps. Our product was co-engineered and awarded by Microsoft, and has the highest user satisfaction ratings. With CodeTwo's ISO/IEC 27001 & 27018 certification and our proprietary 4-layer security system, it's the most secure signature solution on the market. Watch a short product video

CodeTwo offers solutions for organization-wide email signature management, data backup and migration for Microsoft 365 & Exchange Server, developed since 2007 and used by over 120k organizations worldwide, including Facebook, Samsung and UNICEF.

41 thoughts on “20+ professional out of office text examples

    • Thanks for sharing. Though I need to say that it might work better for an out of office message if you changed it to, for example: “I’m off to my yoga practice. I’ll get back on [date]/[hour]”.
      Take care!

  1. Great article! The information you shared here is really useful. Hope for more content like this!

  2. What a helpful guide on crafting out-of-office messages! It’s always a struggle to find the right words, but these examples make it much easier. Thanks for sharing these tips and inspirations! I’ll definitely keep them in mind next time I’m setting up my out-of-office reply. ✉️

  3. Extremely helpful! These professional out-of-office text examples provide a diverse range of effective messages for any work scenario. A must-read for effective communication strategies.

  4. These out-of-office text examples are a lifesaver! I’ve struggled to craft the perfect message when I’m away from the office, but this list has given me so much inspiration. Now I can set up a professional and friendly message with ease. Thanks for sharing these helpful examples!

  5. These out-of-office message examples cover various situations. They’re great templates to ensure you’re covering all your bases professionally. Thanks for sharing!

  6. This is some really good information, very informative and beneficial to all the readers. I was able to gain plenty of information. Great work.

  7. Thanks a lot for sharing. Because most of people does’nt know how to create a message for professional use. It is important to know how to behave in professional places.

  8. I enjoyed reading the comments section as well. It’s fascinating to see the diverse opinions and thoughts on this topic

  9. Reading this blog on professional out of office examples made me realize that my previous out of office messages were as boring as watching paint dry. Thanks for the inspiration to spice up my OOO game! Now I can leave my colleagues laughing and wondering if I’ve joined the circus instead.
    once again thank you codetwo for sharing this knowledge

  10. Excellent content! This is going to be really helpful for my business. Thank you for sharing such valuable information. With gratitude, David.

  11. thanks for your information of professional out of office example. i read your article is very impressive professional out of office example.

  12. Hi
    I really thank you that your information helps me a lot. I cant set up an auto replay on my e-mail. After I have seen your article it help me to set up an auto replay. Hope this information help people effectively.
    Again thanks for this valuable info

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  15. First and foremost, I want to express my appreciation for your article. The method you presented the content, as well as the structure of the article, really impressed me.

  16. Great piece of content liked reading it. thank you for making an article on such useful topic. gotta definitely share it with others.

  17. I appreciate you trying to reach me, unfortunately – I am out of office sunbathing. I will be back at {Date}. It will probably take me two additional days to get used to my office and dig through hundreds of new urgent emails, before I get back to you.

    This one is really unprofessional. I wouldn’t use this.

    • That’s exactly why it’s under “Funny out of office messages”. I wouldn’t use it either. Though, it’s still better than “<vacation test>” or “not here”, I’ve seen several times.

  18. Using an out of office message is part of customary, professional email communication. However, it is essential to think twice about the information you share when setting up your OOO message.

    • Hi Teresa,
      You could write “I will be out of office tomorrow” to be grammatically correct, but using “tomorrow” in an out of office message has one basic flaw – it will probably be read “tomorrow”, when you are already away. It is more logical to use dates. If you use “tomorrow”, be sure to add a date in brackets, so that readers will not be confused.

  19. From a security perspective, you do NOT want to give info such as “out of town” and specific dates of absence. People who’ve done that have returned to a ransacked house. Think about it. The care has your name and landline phone number. That lets them discover your home street address. You then give them a window of time your house will be vacant. I counsel saying something more like, “I’m sorry to miss your call, but please contact xxxxxx if this is important. I am on a special project that prevents my response for an extended period. Thank you.”

    • Hi David,
      Thank you for your contribution to the topic, it is always good to take security into account. I admit that you have a point there, but that is where common sense kicks in. If there is a way for the recipient to discover your address, you simply use a general template, like the one you have presented, or the all-purpose out of office message from the article. Still, I cannot imagine using a home landline number in an OOF message (or an email signature) as a good idea. Another thing – if someone is being targeted or has the bad luck of sending an automatic response to someone who is likely to break into a house, any out of office message introduces a risk. It is enough for a burglar to observe the house for a while, so the lack of the exact period is not that much safer. To be safe, make sure not to enclose any personal information which might lead to your home address and think about some security measures, as I strongly believe that out of office messages are not on the top of the security threats’ list.

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