Email Etiquette - Regiment Visit. Plus AOSB Briefing Next Week

Discussion in 'Join the Army - Regular Officer Recruiting' started by OP-Fortitude, Sep 19, 2012.

Welcome to the Army Rumour Service, ARRSE

The UK's largest and busiest UNofficial military website.

The heart of the site is the forum area, including:

  1. Good afternoon one and all!

    I have sought to arrange a visit with an RAC Regiment. In the communications between myself and the regimental secretary I initially addressed the communication to 'Major...'. However now a few weeks later with a date for a visit given, the Major has emailed back addressing me by my first name and signing off with his first name.

    So my question, would it be both disrespectful and bad email etiquette to email back with a first name and sign off with a first name as this last email shows a more informal approach?

    Many thanks in advance...
  2. It's a lot easier to be over familiar in this case than over formal. I would continue to address him formally unless he requests otherwise, which will probably be never. On the other hand, you're not in the military yet, so call him mate or pal, and make the most of it while you can.
  3. Concur, keep using the "Dear Major X" until or unless he specifically tells you to call him by his first name. Clearly once you get the the regiment for your potential officer visit this may change.

    In case you are interested, in the RAC, officers address each other by their first names with the exception of the Commanding Officer, other Lt Cols and above who are addressed by their rank by more junior officers; "Colonel" for Lt Cols and Cols, including honorary Colonels, "Brigadier" for Brigs and "General" for all types of General Officer. The exception to this is when one is on parade, when officers address those in more senior appointments as "Sir" regardless of rank. The reason behind the use of first names by cavalry (and now RAC) officers is said to be because back in the day virtually every officer was titled in some way (Sir, Lord, Baron, Duke, Earl, etc.) and so without a blanket ruling on how people were to be addressed, it would become a bit silly, particularly with a Major who might be a Lord but who would address a subordinate Lt who happened to be an Earl as "Sir".
  4. Many thanks for the replies, they're well noted! I shall continue to proceed down the road of formal address, emphasising respect for the ranks as is only right to do so!

    Very interesting information about method of addressing an RAC Officer too, I'll have to bear it mind if all goes well! Thanks once again.
  5. The above may still pertain to military convention, however in real life, if somebody signs with their full name, it is better to assume a the use of a title (Mr etc.). If the person signs using only their given name, then it is safe to assume that to be an invitation to use that name. Elizabeth R is probably an exception to this rule.

    It is actually considered bad form to sign using any title or rank, although the full name including title (or rank) can be written underneath the signature.
  6. In a "formal email" [if such a thing exists?] is it necessary to sign of under the old- fashioned:

    I have the honour to be, Sir,
    your most obedient servant.

    just a thought, as the nipper is having to correspond with RHQ.
  7. No requirement for 'I have the honour to be' as that is reserved for a formal letter only. A polite salutation probably works best, for example, Kind Regards or Respectfully yours, or similar.
  8. Thanks, thought so, just wondered if the creation of the "formal email form" had occurred yet.
  9. Jebus, not this tosh again. That went out with the ark and is not used even in the most formal correspondence. And no, it would not be taken as a compliment, nor as a nod to the days of yore; merely points the correspondent out as being able to open even a soft copy of JSP 101.
  10. You need to look at the Army Staff Handbook, which clearly articulates the continued requirement for formal correspondence, including "I have sir the honour to be, etc." type language. The ASH was produced by the Army to mitigate the deficiencies of the latest version of JSP101, which (as the title implies) is a joint publication and therefore does not fully reflect the Army's single service requirements.

    However, there is little (but still some) requirement for formal correspondence nowadays and this (the OP's initial question) is not one of them.