Letter of Reprimand for Employee Performance

A letter of reprimand serves as a warning issued to employees to improve their work performance or behavior. Before an employee is suspended or terminated, the letter is issued as a final warning by the organization. This letter is used in the final steps by the supervisor when dealing with a subordinates poor work behavior.

An employee showing poor performance in the working environment needs to be informed of their mistakes immediately, so they can emend them.

The first step is to explain the problem to the subordinate and the possible consequences the employees’ action can have if they continue to ignore their mistakes at work. This is the first warning, which can be relayed to the employee through an email or verbally.

Most organizations have the policy to issue three warnings before any disciplinary action is taken. The action taken by the disciplinary committee depends on the severity of the problem. For example, if the employee has a habit of coming late to work, the organization may have some amount deducted out of their salary as a punishment.

However, if an employee shows violent behavior, the organization has a choice to suspend or terminate the employee, effective immediately.

There are a few rules the organization needs to follow when dealing with an employees’ performance issues. The warning should be issued in a private setting. The supervisor is advised to act rationally by speaking calmly and clearly as well as providing the employee a chance to explain their side of the story.

Explaining to the employee the problem and the consequences of the actions help outline the main issue the employee should focus on to fix the problem.

Some ways or reprimanding can cause adverse effects on the employee. Looking down upon subordinates and behaving harshly with them does not solve problems rather creates more causing the employees to act out more. This also raises the labor turnover rate as the employee are treated harshly and not given the opportunities to grow and adjust according to their organization’s requirements.

It is necessary for supervisors to reprimand an employee immediately when they act out in the work environment. However, the reprimanding procedure should be followed through in a proper manner to avoid harsh treatment of employees.

Below is a sample of a written reprimand to an employee with poor work performance:

Dear ABC,

It has come to our attention that your work performance has deteriorated in the past few months. The quality of your last assignment was not up to the required standards.

If you are facing any difficulties, please feel free to reach out to your supervisor or the HR unit.

We hope you will reflect upon your work performance and make efforts to improve it.


HR Department.

Letter of Reprimand for Employee Performance


The Sample Letter

Format: MS Word [.docx]

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