Warning Letter for Poor Performance with Sample

Warning letters are official documents issued by the administration of a company or an institute to their employees in order to warn them about their doings and their shortcomings. These letters have a serious tone and should be taken seriously by the concerned receiver as they can be changed to termination letters if ignored.

Most warning letter draws the attention of the receiver toward the issue of which either the receiver is aware or unaware. The administration takes the bold step and hands out these letters as they have a limited tolerance policy against the shortcomings of their employees. Within a company, these letters are drafted by HR on the demands of their boss and then directed towards the concerned employee after signing.

There are various reasons for being a receiver of a deadly letter in a company and some of them are listed below,

  • Disrespectful behavior
  • Uninformed absences
  • Unlimited informed leaves
  • Poor performance
  • Disciplinary issue
  • Incompetence
  • Complaints from employees

A warning letter is not the first step taken by the manager or administration in case of any inconvenience rather, any significant individual from higher authority has a personal discussion with the employee and lets them of their performance in the company. They are made aware of the highlighted issues and also let them know what the company expects from them.

If the conversation results in desired changes from the employee then the matter is resolved and closed but if the discussion does not move the employee and the same performance is given by the employee then the company takes the matter into their own hands by issuing the warning letter.

The significance of a warning letter within a workspace can be highlighted from the following points,

  • It is issued by HR of the company therefore, it should be taken seriously.
  • Written information can put a stronger impact on the employee, which discussions cannot do.
  • These warning letters are official and can be used by the administration if termination is needed.
  • As per company policy, 2 warning letters are issued to any employee, and then it changes into a termination letter.
  • Official documents in hard form have a different effect on the employees and lead to desired results.

Warning letters are not issued out of the blue or handed to the employee through staff boys. These are serious matters and are handled seriously to protect the sentiments of the employee and assist them to see the right direction. Some of the guidelines that should be followed while issuing the warning letter are mentioned below,

  • Set a date and time to hand out the warning letter as employees are often busy with meetings and other work, therefore, choose a time that they have a clear schedule and can process the information clearly.
  • Keep the location formal i.e., choose a meeting room or any office to discuss this matter and do not talk about it in the cafeteria or any other restaurant or public gathering.
  • Keep the matters official by keeping it between the administration and employee as leaks of such news can spread among other employees and the receiver have to face the embarrassment.
  • A warning letter should be prepared on the official letterhead of the company as it can be used again in any other official setting i.e., termination.
  • Discuss the contents of the letter with the employee to help them in understanding the situation and the expected outcome.

Sample Letter

Eric Dane

Assistant at ABC Company

Date: 29th November 20XX

Subject: Issuance of warning on poor performance

Dear Eric,

This letter serves as the official warning for your incompetence in achieving the objectives mentioned in your job description along with the goals agreed upon between you and your manager. We already had a discussion about your below-average performance in recent projects and how you need to change your attitude towards work but you did not put any effort to make it better so this letter had to happen.

Each member of the company is expected to perform their tasks according to the requirements and meet the goals which are a part of their job description. Hence, we would appreciate your efforts towards the betterment of your performance and meeting the expectations of a higher administration. We believe you have the ability to perform but you are not putting required effort which may result in serious consequences in the future.

If you need help to get back on track then every colleague of yours can help you and guide you. I am always available in case of any suggestion or assistance but the efforts should be from your side.

Best wishes.


Rick Martin Manager at ABC Company

File: Word (.docx) 2007+ and iPad
Size 23 Kb