How To Write a Raise Letter (With Template and Example)

Updated June 9, 2023

Business Letter Format
Image description

The image is titled "Business Letter Format" and shows an example letter with the parts of the letter identified on the left side.

The left side includes:

  1. Date

  2. Name and address

  3. Greeting

  4. Opening paragraph

  5. Closing paragraph

  6. Complimentary close and signature

The letter reads:

February 1, 20XX

Deborah Jones
ABC Company, Inc.
1234 East Main Street
San Diego, CA 92101

Dear Ms. Jones,

I am submitting this request for a leave of absence to tend to important personal matters beginning next month. If possible, I would like to take my leave beginning March 15 and return to the office April 3, 20XX.

I can make myself available intermittently to answer questions via phone or email, and am happy to do whatever necessary to ensure a smooth transition before my leave begins.

Thank you for your consideration.

Johanna Jansen

As a manager, one of your responsibilities could be to write salary increase notification letters to your employees. Writing an effective raise letter informs your employees when they've earned a salary increase, which may reflect your appreciation for their hard work or compensate them for taking on more responsibilities.

In this article, we explain what a raise letter is, outline the steps for how to write one and help you write your own with a template and an example.

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What is a raise letter?

A raise letter is a document that a manager writes to inform an employee when they've earned a salary increase. It includes details regarding the amount of the raise and why the employee earned it. Raise letters serve as formal documents that an employer might use as a record for future reference. They document any discussions that the manager held with an employee about a salary increase and express the details of the increase and any changes to the employee's workplace responsibilities.

Related: How To Write a Salary Increase Recommendation Letter

How to write a raise letter

Here are the steps for how to write an effective raise letter:

1. Know what to include in a raise letter

Most raise letters are three to four paragraphs long. They include an introduction, body and conclusion. Since they're written in the format of a letter, they also include a heading, professional salutation, closer and signature. Most raise letters use a professional tone, though this tone may vary based on the culture of your work setting. For example, if you work for a small business with few employees and a casual atmosphere, you may use a less formal tone to better fit your company culture.

Related: Everything You Need To Know About Writing a Professional Letter

2. Create an outline for your letter

Having a clear outline can help you keep your letter organized and professional. You may use a letter template for your outline, or you can adapt a template to suit your specific needs. During this phase of the writing process, consider how long you want the letter to be. You can create sections for each paragraph and include a few notes regarding each paragraph's focus so you can easily fill in the content later.

Outlining is a great way to keep your content organized and determine what to include in your raise letter. When you set a clear purpose for each section and paragraph of your letter, it can help your writing stay focused. Additionally, creating an outline may help you better manage your time. When you have an outline, you can spend less time brainstorming content as you write or reorganizing your writing after you finish.

Related: 15 Tips To Improve Business Writing

3. Address the letter to the employee

The header typically includes the date, your name, your company's street address, the company phone number and your professional email address. It also includes your employee's first and last name and street address. In some cases, such as if you work for a large organization, you might also document the employee's position or department.

These details clarify that you're sending an official letter on the company's behalf and that the letter is sent to the correct recipient. Following the header, address the employee with a polite salutation.

Related: How to Start a Professional Letter: Tips and Examples

4. Write a brief introduction

It's typical to start with a direct statement informing the employee that they've earned a salary increase of a specific amount and that the increase begins on a particular date. You may also include a sentence or two that informs them of where or how to ensure they receive the correct amount in their paycheck based on their new yearly wage.

For example, you may tell them to contact the human resources department with any questions they have regarding their paychecks. Most introduction paragraphs include one to three sentences.

Related: 5 Steps for Great Business Writing (With Tips)

5. Compose the body of the letter

Although most raise letters are short, you may need to include more than one body paragraph to explain why the employee earned their raise and any additional expectations you have for them.

For example, you may write a paragraph about meeting with them regarding a potential raise. The next paragraph might outline any additional responsibilities or skills they've contributed to your team. A third paragraph could describe any future goals you have for them. Most body paragraphs include three to four sentences focused on a single topic.

Related: How to Ask for a Raise in Writing

6. Finish the letter with a short conclusion

Your conclusion may summarize the key details of the letter and express your gratitude for your employee's hard work and dedication. Offering a few words that express your gratitude can help your employee feel appreciated and deserving of their salary increase. The conclusion paragraph is typically three sentences or fewer. Following your conclusion, offer a professional closer like "Sincerely" or "Best regards" and your signature.

Related: Parts of a Business Letter: Examples of the 7 Components

7. Proofread and revise the letter

After completing the letter, spend some time reviewing it for tone, organization and professionalism. Make sure that each paragraph has a logical flow and focuses on a single topic at a time. Assess whether you have included all the necessary information in the letter and whether you can cut any information for conciseness.

Also, review your letter for a professional tone. You can show professionalism by using formal language, spelling out words instead of using contractions and ensuring your letter is free from minor errors in grammar and spelling.

As a proofreading strategy, consider reading the letter aloud to yourself. Reading aloud can help you catch mistakes that you may have missed when skimming your writing silently. If you have time, consider walking away from the letter for a few hours or overnight. Reading it at a later time may allow you to identify other errors.

Although having another person proofread your writing for you can be a great strategy, it may be better to read a raise letter to yourself to keep your employee's earnings information private.

Related: 8 Examples of Business Writing

Raise letter template

Here's a template to help you write your own raise letter:


[Your first and last names]
[Company street address]
[Company phone number or your work phone number]
[Your company email address]

[Employee's first and last names]
[Optional: employee's job title or department]
[Employee's street address]

Dear [Employee's first name]:

This letter confirms that upon review, your salary has been increased from [amount] to [amount] per [time period]. Your salary increase is effective as of [date] and the increased pay will appear in your paycheck starting [date].

[Write one to three paragraphs regarding the reason for the raise and your expectations.]

Congratulations on your well-deserved salary increase. We are pleased to award you this salary raise in gratitude for your continued hard work on behalf of our company. Thank you for your loyalty and professional excellence.

Best wishes,
[Your name]

Download Raise Letter Template

To upload the template into Google Docs, go to File > Open > and select the correct downloaded file.

Related: Templates for Business Letters (With Tips and Examples)

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Raise letter example

Here's an example raise letter to guide you in writing your own:

March 22, 2022

Benjamin Vorhies
1432 Maplewood Science Park

Louis Ortega-Martinez
Clinical research associate
987 Grove Park Lane

Dear Louis:

This letter confirms that upon review, your salary has been increased from $58,000 per year to $59,950 per year. Your salary increase is effective as of April 1, and the increased pay will appear in your paycheck starting April 15.

As discussed during Friday's meeting, we're granting this salary increase due to your success in exceeding all of your department goals for the last two quarters. Additionally, your dedication to teamwork has led to several significant improvements in our workplace processes, allowing our department to expand its services since you joined our team last year.

Your work on our current research project shows great promise, and we're grateful to have someone with your knowledge and level of professionalism working for our company. The reports you submit for each project milestone are among the most thorough on your team.

Congratulations on your well-deserved salary increase. We are pleased to award you this salary raise in gratitude for your continued hard work on behalf of our company. Thank you for your loyalty and professional excellence.

Best wishes,
Benjamin Vorhies

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