The structure of an informal (or neutral) business email of response in English is the same as in many other languages. You start the email by writing some small talk like 'How are you?' or 'I'm doing well' etc... and then you write that you're responding to their email. Then in the next section, you answer the questions that have been asked or confirm information. And in the last, you ask if the information you have written is fine and offer the receiver the opportunity to contact you. Apart from the small talk, the structure between a formal and an informal email is more or less the same. The difference is in the vocabulary and phrases that are used.
In this online exercise we will look at business English vocabulary and phrases for informal (or neutral) emails of response. This is the style of email used when responding to a colleague or a trusted customer or supplier. Often when people write informal/neutral business emails in English, they use a mixture of both informal and formal vocabulary and phrases. In informal emails you can also write contractions of words (e.g. "I'd"), which you can't when writing formal emails or letters.
Read the below informal business email of response about a project in an airport from an external project manager to a client. Focus on the words/phrases in BOLD and think about their meaning.
Everything is going well at the moment. We're a little bit busy, but that's good.
In answer to your email about the current situation with the Skipton Airport Project, please find the answers to your questions below:
We successfully completed stage 2 on Monday and currently we're preparing to start stage 3. In general, the project is going well. We haven't had any problems with the machinery but there are still some minor issues with the delivery system. As was said in our last meeting, the problem with the delivery system is because of the software. It's a very common software issue and we just need time to correct the code. Don't worry, we're looking into it and we expect that it will be resolved by the end of the month.
I apologise that you haven't received a copy of the updated Project Report earlier. I have attached a copy of the report below:
I can confirm that the post-installation support package we offer includes both remote and call-out site support 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. This covers remote monitoring, a service every 3 months, service engineer visits and the cost of all parts and labour.
Regarding the quote for an extension to the period of post-installation support from 6 months to 12 months. I think we should discuss this subject at the next project update meeting.
I hope that this answers your questions.
Give me a ring if you need anything else.
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Below is a definition/description of each of the words/phrases in bold from the above text. Now choose the word/phrase from the question's selection box which you believe answers each question. Only use one word/phrase once. Click on the "Check Answers" button at the bottom of the quiz to check your answers.
When the answer is correct, an Additional Information Icon "" will appear next to the answer. Click on this for extra information on the word/phrase and for a translation.
Now that you understand the vocabulary of writing an informal business email of response, practice them by writing your own business email of response with the new words/phrases.