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July 20, 2009

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Srikanth

I read "PFA is XYZ" in one of mails I received, and I was thinking to myself the same thing - How much time does it take to write, "Attached document is XYZ"

Moreover, "PFA is XYZ" doesn't even make sense! Please find the attached is XYZ? Hmm... I need a break.

Lynn

Srikanth, thanks for giving me my first big laugh of the day!

Jonathan

Thanks, Lynn!

I really like your suggestion to do away with "see" and "find". Creative writing is more effective AND efficient!

Lynn

Hi, Jonathan. Thanks a bunch for inspiring the post!

AC

Hi Lynn,
Love all your posts. This one hit the home. I do "PFA" all the time because I am sending invoices every week.
Some how could not come up with a better alternative to that when sending invoices.
Do you have any suggestion.
Once again million thanks for your wonderful blog.
AC

Lynn

Hi, AC. Well, imagine that I have just banned your use of "PFA." What plain language would communicate better?

How about "I have attached" or "Attached is" or "Your most recent invoice is attached" or "The attached invoice covers the dates xx to xx"?

Depending on the circumstances, you may want to try "When you review the attached invoice, you will see that . . . "

Remember: I have banned your use of "PFA"! No cheating!

Lynn

AC

Hi Lynn,
Great advice, will keep that in mind.
Thanks a lot
AC

Elena

I was told today that my sentence was incorrectly written.
"Please see attached for today's US & International refund report". The person said I should write it without the word "for".

Please tell me if I was writing it incorrectly. I think I write pretty well and really shocked me.

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi, Elena. If the entire attachment is the refund report, then the feedback you received is correct.

If the attachment includes more than the refund report, your version is correct.

A cleaner version is "Today's US & international refund report is attached," or "Attached is today's US and international refund report." Unless you need to direct your reader to "please see" the attachment, you can drop those words.

Lynn

sherri

Should I use OR, or WITH in the below sentence?

We will keep you apprised of further developments OF the application. Or

We will keep you apprised of further developments WITH the application.

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi, Sherri. It depends on your meaning. "Developments of the application" means the application is being devleoped.

"Developments with the application" may mean something is being developed that works with the application.

I hope that response helps.

Lynn

peterdai

YEAH,YOU ARE RIGHT

SO NEXT TIME MAYBE I SHOULD
WRITE "The attached diagram shows . . . "

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Yes, give it a try.

Lynn

meryl

Hi,

I used to send emails with this common line "please see attached the statement of your account...."

Yet, few days back while teaching my trainee she insisted that it is wrong. she said it should be "please see the attached statement of your account..."

I believe using "the" before "attached" is not necessary. Or does it matter if "the" comes before or after.

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi, Meryl. To an American ear, "Please see the attached statement of your account" sounds more natural than "Please see attached the statement of your account."

My purpose in writing this blog post was to offer alternatives to "Please see attached." Did you consider the sentence starters listed above?

Lynn

Abhishek

Nice observation.These sentence formations are helpful and knowingly or unknwingly, I've been using them for quite a while.
The only time I use PFA/PSA is when I have to send an attachment referred during a discussion..The
context is clear and I don't want to send a blank mail ;)
While composing a mail for wider audience, I try using the additonal word "herewith" to make it clearer - call it old school :)
Eg,
Attached herewith is XYZ
or - XYZ is attached herewith.

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Abhishek, I would not add "herewith" unless I wanted to sound terribly old school--so old school as to be shriveled and dusty.

I just checked "Garner's Modern American Usage." Garner says, "Business-writing texts have consistently condemned the phrases ['enclosed herewith,' etc.] since the late 19th century."

What's wrong with "As promised, here is the ________"?

Lynn

Abhishek

Agree Lynn- so much old school as obsolete but ,somehow, seems to give a completeness to a mere "Attached".
Refreshing to see more ways enlisted to refer to the attachment indirectly in this article and subsequent comments..Quite refreshing!Nothing wrong with "As promised, here is the __" but the word "attach" has to be accommodated somewhere in the text- more importantly in the multiple attachment scenarios! Your views please?

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi, Abhishek. I agree it is a good idea to refer to an attachment in the body of the message.

The examples I gave in the original post (above) all do that job.

Good luck!

Lynn

husnain Aanar

i want to search relevant sentences of below
"Please See Attached"

Guide me please

Aman

hi
Please let me know as to whether we can write in the body of e-mail or after the necessary closing?

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hello, Husnain. I apologize that I do not understand your question.

Lynn

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Aman, the sentences I recommended would be in the body of the email. In an email, you do not refer to attachments after the closing.

In email, the closing is the end of the message. It is followed by only the signature. Business letters are different. In letters, attachments are noted after the signature.

Lynn

Ileen

Hi Lynn,

Thank you for your blog which provides a lot of useful information about business writing.

In some of our business correspondences, I notice that people start their sentence with " herewith attached is.......". I wonder if it is a correct way to use "herewith attached".

I'm looking forward to hearing from you.

Thank you,

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi, Ileen. When I was growing up, people started sentences with the expression "Attached herewith please find." "Herewith attached" is not quite as bad, but it isn't good.

Why not use plain, clear English?

Lynn

Ileen

Hi, Lynn. I appreciate you taking time to reply me. I totally agree with your suggestion.

Ileen

Amy

Hi Lynn,

I'm thinking about how I can make improvement with the "please see attached" problem in the following sentence:

"There is a paid parkade located at the corner of XX Street and XX Street (see map attached for directions)."

Thanks for your time.

Amy

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi, Amy. I would use "See attached map for directions," since the map isn't "attached for directions."

There is nothing wrong with referring readers to an attachment. The problem is the "Please see attached" that appears alone, when other constructions would be more accurate and helpful.

Lynn

ibrahim

Please find the attached invoices from G T F for September and October,2011.is it corect?

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hello, Ibrahim. You do not need a comma between the month and the year. Otherwise, your sentence is correct.

I do not use "Please find the attached." To me, "Please find" suggests that I have lost something. Why not simply say "The invoices are attached" or "I have attached the invoices"?

Lynn

Ibrahim

Thank yoy so much,but he is my boss.
i need to be formal with him

Please find the attached invoices from G T F for September and October,2011.is it corect?
G T F is another company
how can say that and Mention the month of the invoices

i am greatful for your help
Ibrahim

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Ibrahim, please see my response above.

Lynn

ibrahim

Thank you so much Lynn
Ibrahim

Pat Schultz

Dear Lynn,
I have the exact opposite problem. We are a world wide company. Many of our email recipients are contractors and do not spend hours in front of computers. Therefore, to be clear, we want to let them know that there is an attachment to "this" email. In fact, I DO explain all the pages content in bullet form when necessary. However, since I use the term "see attached" SO OFTEN, I want to find a shortcut text term to "see attached". So, Q: is there a text or symbol that I can use that my email recipients would understand as "see attached" or "attached" or "attachment" ? Does a term need to be invented for me and others?
Sincerely,
Pat Schultz

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi, Pat. Thanks for the interesting question. You don't have to invent an abbreviation.
I just checked three reference books on my shelf, all of which give "att." as the abbreviation for "attached" or "attachment."

I wonder though whether your readers have any problem with your repeated use of "See the attached report" or "The spreadsheet is attached." I would not mind your using such terms repeatedly in a complex message.

If you do choose to abbreviate, be sure you define the abbreviation the first time you use it in a message, for readers who may not recognize it.

Good luck!

Lynn

Sergio

Hi Lynn. I trust you are well. I like your blog.
Please suggest wether to use this sentence or not:-please fin/see attache the reports for the day 9 march.

i will be greatful for your help.
Sergio

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hello, Sergio. If you have read my blog post and comments above, you know I do not like "Please see attached" when other phrases work well. One possibility you might try is "Reports for March 9 are attached."

Whatever wording you choose, I encourage you to make a list of the correct spelling of the words you want. Here are words to add to the list from your example:

fin = find
attache = attached
march = March (capitalization)
i = I (capitalization)
greatful = grateful

I wish you success.

Lynn

Patricia Cassini

I really appreciate your blog!
Usually I use "Follow attached the document"...
It's sounds pleonastic or redundant?
Regards
Patricia (Brazil)

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hello, Patricia. I do not know what you mean by "Follow attached the document." It is not natural- sounding English.

I have never seen the word "pleonastic" before. Thank you for the vocabulary development!

Lynn

Dyan

Hi Lynn,

I am a Document Controller in a Construction Company and I always send out e-mails to contractors and clients daily.

I have read your replies above but since you don't like to use "Please find attached", can you suggest on how am I to send a formal e-mail like this:

"Please find attached herewith our letter with reference 1234 dated 14 April 2012 regarding Damages on Completed ID Works for your perusal."

I hope you could help me on this.

Thanks.

Dyan Rioveros

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi, Dyan. Try something like this:

Subject: Reference 1234

"I have attached our letter regarding damages on completed ID works for your review."

OR

"As promised, I have attached . . . ."

OR

"For your review, attached is our letter regarding damages on completed ID works."

Any of those choices is better than the original.

Lynn

celine h.

Hi Lynn,

Is it okay if I only write one line .

Attached is your statement of account.

Thanks, celine

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi, Celine. Yes, it is okay to write only one line. It may be better if you add a polite message to your customer such as "We appreciate your business" or "Thank you for your business."

Follow your message with a professional signature line that includes your contact information.

Lynn

D

Hi Lynn. Below is 3 sentences I got from the emails.

1)Please find enclosed for the captioned.

2)Any further necessary please feel free to contact us.

3)As per your request, please find attached the completed sub-contractor registration form and other supporting documents for your information.

Are those sentences correct?

Thanks,
Issac

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Number 1 does not make sense.

Number 2 does not make sense.

Number 3 would be better as "As you requested, here are the completed . . . "

Lynn

Sundar

Hello Lynn,

I have been wondering why people use "Please find attached..." and wanted an alternate phrase. Now, I've got a meaning full alternate and would like to Thank You for the same.

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Sundar, I am glad you found what you were looking for here. Thanks for sharing your appreciation.

Lynn

Giovanna Coppola

Lynn,

Thanks a lot for the help.

Is it okay to say "As requested by Josh, I have translated 4 pixels (PPL, PPL + CSL, PPL + PPS, PPS). You can find them attached."?

Thanks again!

shariful ameen

Hello Lynn,

I really like your corrections.
Is it correct to write 'I have attached the report for your your kind information.'?

Thanks!
Sharif

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hello, Giovanna. Your example is correct.

Lynn

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi, Sharif. "Kind information" does not make sense. You can say "I have attached the report for your information."

Lynn

Kevin

Hi Lynn

Thanks for the blog - I am glad I am not the only one getting increasingly annoyed by 'Please find attached'.

However, I want take a step back and question whether 'Please find attached' is gramatically correct to start with before finding its more constructive alternative (sentence structure to be specific).

Here are three sentences, what do you think?

1. Please find attached a zip file containing the scripts.

2. Please find a zip file attached which contains the scripts.

3. Please find a zip file, containing the scripts, attached with this email.

Ofcourse, I will not use any of the above three (anymore!).

Thanks

Kevin

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi, Kevin.

Let's see:

Number 1 is structurally correct.

In Number 2, the structure is clumsy. The "which" clause is hanging from the word "attached," but it modifies the word "file."

Number 3 is structurally correct, but "attached with" does not sound good to me. I prefer "attached to."

Do you agree?

Lynn

Jo

hi ms lynn

My officemate writes like this "Please find attached file it contains...." and "Attached here file contains..." are these correct?

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

No, those examples are not correct. The first is a run-on sentence. The second does not make sense.

Lynn

Patrick Bourgo

Dear Lynn,

Thank you for both your website and this post.

I have a grammatical question for you about the phrase "please find attached." (I know that you do not like this phrase and to avoid using it.)

A non-native English speaking colleague recently asked me about the difference between these two sentences using this expression:

1) Please find attached the MS Word file for your reference.

2)Please find the attached MS Word file for your reference.

In particular, he was looking for a grammatical explanation as to how the article "the" could come either befor or after the word "attached," if both are indeed correct?

I would greatly appreciate it if you could help me out with a grammatical explanation of the position of "the" in these cases.

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi, Patrick. Interesting question! The article "the" is correct in both sentences. What changes is the use of the word "attached."

In your first example, "attached" works as an adverb telling where. In your second sentence, "attached" acts as an adjective telling which one.

Consider these examples:
The file folder hanging there is the correct one.
The hanging file folder there is the correct one.

The name announced was Smith.
The announced name was Smith.

The enclosed letter explains the details.
The letter enclosed explains the details.

In all the pairs, one sentence sounds more natural, but both sentences are correct.

I hope that explanation helps.

Lynn

Patrick

Thank you very much, the explanation was great.

Patrick

A question in response to your examples:

The name announced was Smith.
The announced name was Smith.

In the above examples "announced" seems to be an adjective in both cases.

The enclosed letter explains the details.
The letter enclosed explains the details.

In the above examples "enclosed" seems to be an adjective in both cases.

Were both of these examples meant to show a similar distinction between adjective / adverb use in my original question? If so, which case is the adverb form for each example. If not, what was I supposed to notice from the examples and I would greatly appreciate it if you could give a similar example to my original question?

By the way, your website is really helpful, thank you for it.

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hello, Patrick. What I hoped would come across in my examples is that a word could come before or after a noun, but the placement of that word does not necessarily change the need for an article such as "the." I believe my focus on adverb/adjective obscured what should have been my real point.

I could not think quickly of examples that matched yours. I might have to begin with "Please find" to do so, and I don't like that construction unless I have lost something. For example, "Please find enclosed" would work to illustrate the point.

If all else fails, just tell your colleague that this is one of the oddities of English. (I am only partly kidding.)

Lynn

Patrick

Thank you again for your helpful response.

L Ashwin Leonard

Thanks Lynn, your write up has changed my life for the better, now my e-mail shall be brighter than before thanks to you.

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

I am glad to be helpful!

Lynn

Kev

"Please see attached" is simply too dull--and it's inaccurate.

Oh no it isn't. See is entirely grammatically correct and appropriate shorthand for 'Refer to for further information'.

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Thanks for your point, Kev.

Lynn

Adnan

"please find attachment regarding captioned subject" Is the right sentance?

Adnan

Or "Please find herewith attachment regarding captioned subject"

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hello, Adnan. Both of your suggestons are bad because they are wordy and the language is old-fashioned and heavy.

You can simply say "Here is the attachment" or "I have attached the ____________." (Fill in the blank.)

Lynn

Iann

Hi Lynn,

Could you please make a comment on the comma place in the greeting?

I've been seeing and using stylistics as above. But now I see that you are putting comma before name.

Chin Thou Leong

Hello Lynn,

I really like your corrections.
Is it correct to write 'ATTACHED IS AN AMENDED COPY OF INVOICE'and
'Vessel has been substituted to" or 'substituted by'.

Thanks!
Chin

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Chin, your first sentence is correct. However, the sentence would sound more natural with the word THE before INVOICE.

I don't completely understand your second sentence. Vessel B might substitute for Vessel A, in which case you would write "Vessel B substituted for Vessel A."

Lynn

Fem

Hi Lynn,

I write a lot of emails to different countries where I try to ask for payment without actually asking it, and my usual sentence would be:

"Thank you for your new order. Please find here attached our pro forma invoice for your kind reference and payment."

Would there be a better way to phrase this?

Thanks,

Fem

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hello, Fern. It depends whether your goal is efficiency or courtesy or both. You might write something like this:

"Thank you very much for your new order. I have attached our invoice. Please note that payment is due within 30 days."

If you could add anything about the order between the first and second sentences--for example, the shipment date--it would be helpful.

Lynn

Ms. D

Hi

I was quite confused on what words to use. Now i learned that "please see attached file is a big no! no! it should be 'Please see the attached documents.But can u help me with this sentence.
"Please see the attached documents for the Updated account value for the following clients."

is it for the ff clients or of the ff. clients.

Too much Appreciated. Thanks

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

The word "following" should not be abbreviated.

Lynn

Emma

Please refer to the attachement, for your perusal.

is it ok?

Emma

Please refer to the attachment.

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi, Emma. "Please refer to the attachment" sounds fine. Of course, the sentence must work in the context of your message.

"For your perusal" is redundant because referring is very similar to perusing.

Lynn

Emma

The attached file is the document that you requested.

Is it ok?

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Yes, Emma, it's okay.

Lynn

Arvind

Lynn

Could i write in a email

Please find attached herewith the........

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

No! No! Never!

Lynn

Arvind

Thank You Lynn for replying me.

Please help me out,

I am working in Pharmaceutical company and i would like to know, whenever i will send the attachment via mail to Manager, Designer and Medical Representative, then what should i write there ?

Please suggest me the updated pattern to writing a mail to same

Regards
Arvind

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Arvind, please see the examples I gave in my original post. They may be helpful to you.

You can also use this construction:

Attached is the _______ [for one attachment]

Attached are the ______ [for more than one attachment]

Lynn

Aranka Backin

Hi Lynn,

It is okey if I only write one line to the customer?
" Please see attached invoice for payment. or I have attached the invoice to be paid." which is correct?
Thanks a lot.
Ari

Arvind

Hi Lynn,

Which form is correct

Dear Sir,

I have attached the documents of Stock statement and please do the needful

Dear Sir,

The documents of stock statement have been attached, please do the needful.

Dear Sir,

Please find the attached documents and do the needful

Which form is correct?

regards
arvind

Arvind

Hi Lynn,

i have attached the documents of ................ please do the needful.

In corporate sector all works seems to be team work so how can i write i have attached....

that should be we have attached the document..............

please clarify.

Regards
Arvind

Arvind

Dear Lynn,

Please see the sentence pattern

Dear Sir,

The documents of xyz are attached, please do the needful.

Regards
Arvind

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Aranka, I suggest this:

I have attached the invoice. Payment is due by _______.


"Invoice to be paid" is redundant. Invoices are virtually always to be paid.

Lynn

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Arvind, I recommend this structure:

The documents of xyz are attached. Please take the necessary steps.

I don't know who your readers are. However, "needful" is a word that is never used in the United States.

Also, it would be much better to use the customer's name. If you cannot, I recommend "Dear Customer" rather than "Dear Sir," which assumes that your reader is a man.

Lynn

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