Now more than ever, businesses are asking employees to provide evidence for everything from their travel expenses to proving their children are really their biological offspring for insurance purposes. At the center of this documentation is the human resources department because in most small to mid-sized organizations this department is the hub for all employee documentation. When your benefits are cancelled or you have problems with your W-2 or paycheck, the human resources department is the place to begin your inquiry.
Type the date. Skip a line, and type the name and title of your contact person in the human resources department. On separate lines, type the name of the department, the name of the organization and the address. Skip an additional line and type "Dear Mr./Ms. (last name)" followed by a colon. If you don't know the name of the person in charge of appeals in the human resources department, call and find out so that you can include his name on your letter. A letter written to a specific person is more likely to be read and acted upon than a general letter addressed to the department as a whole.
Open the letter by identifying yourself by your name, employee ID number and department, if applicable. Explain that you are appealing a decision that the human resources department made. Explain the decision in detail, and include a copy of the documentation that you received, such as a letter.
Give your side of the story, and provide evidence to back your claims. For example, if your insurance was dropped because human resources claimed that you did not pay your premium, provide evidence such as insurance company receipts or pay stubs that demonstrate that the insurance premium was deducted from your pay. Use a matter-of-fact tone. Mistakes happen, and getting angry at the recipient is not likely to help your case.
Thank the recipient for her time, and offer to meet with her to discuss any questions that she has. Provide your telephone number and email address so she may contact you.
Type "Sincerely," and skip three lines. Type your full name and title. Print the letter on company letterhead and sign above your typed name.
Natalie Smith is a technical writing professor specializing in medical writing localization and food writing. Her work has been published in technical journals, on several prominent cooking and nutrition websites, as well as books and conference proceedings. Smith has won two international research awards for her scholarship in intercultural medical writing, and holds a PhD in technical communication and rhetoric.