How to Write a Work Order Letter

Writing a work order letter is a simple process, but you need to make sure you include enough information to let your maintenance team know exactly what they need to do. Here, we’ll go over how to write a work order letter.

What is a work order letter?

A work order letter is a formal document requesting work to be completed. Work order letters can either be hard copy or electronic. Work order letters may also be referred to as work order requests.

Some facilities—typically smaller ones who manage only a few assets—create work orders manually, while others use a CMMS or other type of maintenance management software to generate them automatically.

Tip: Work order letters don’t need to be complex—in fact, a simple, straightforward document is typically best.

What to include in a work order letter

You should include the following information in your work order letter:

Company name

Start with your company name, typically in one of the upper corners. Including your company’s name is especially important if you’re sending a work order letter to a third party vendor, but it keeps internal work orders professional as well.

Company address

Below the company name, include your address. Again, this is important when contracting outside vendors, but it’s good standard practice for internal communication as well.

Work order number

Assign a number to the work order. Typically, you’ll number work orders in chronological order, which helps with record-keeping. Note that if you’re using this letter as a request, you probably won’t include a number.

Work order title

Assign a title to your work order. It doesn’t have to be fancy, but it should tell roughly what the work entails. Something like “Broken boiler” or “Mixer rattling” should work.

Work order description

Give a brief description of the work order. Describe the problem, requirements to complete the job, and so forth. Include the maintenance work order category, if possible.

Priority level

Assign a priority level (low, medium, or high) to the work order. Doing so helps maintenance planners and supervisors plan what to do each day.

Tip: Alongside the priority level, a due date further helps with planning, and it forms the basis of measuring schedule compliance.

Work location

Give the location where the work needs to be completed. Doing so helps your maintenance team plan tasks for efficiency and identify equipment needed (i.e. tools, transportation, accessibility).

Worker’s name

Assign a worker to complete the task. The worker should have all the skills needed to complete the task successfully. In some cases, you may need outside help, in which case the third party vendor might make that particular assignment.

Name of sender

Include the name of the person assigning the work order (you). Work order letters may be drafted by employees within the organization to request work, or they may be issued by maintenance managers and planners themselves as a way to assign work.

Tip: Learn more about how to manage work orders here.

Get started with your own work orders

To help you get started creating your work order letters, we’ve provided an example. The letter below can be used as a template for most work order letters, whether you need to request corrective maintenance, recurring PM tasks, or work from third party contractors.

Sample work order letter

Packing and Sealing Co.
4321 Blastoff Road

Work Order No. 123

Mixer Bearings Replacement

Steve Barkley:

Mixer A in the south wing has been making loud grinding noises for a few weeks now, and it has only gotten worse. The bearings likely need replacement. Jim Roll seems to be the most qualified for the task, and you’ll probably need a ladder and some power tools.

This task is high priority, and should be completed in the next day if possible.

Jane Boss

Download a work order template

After an admin approves a work request, one then creates a work order. Creating a work order is as simple as transferring information from the request to the work order (with changes as decided by a maintenance planner or manager). To make that process as quick as possible, try our work order template.

Download a free printable template here

Work orders can also be automatically generated using a CMMS. Whether you use a software solution, or type documents up by hand, there’s no need for a work order letter to be complicated. Just include the necessary details and send it to the appropriate person to get started.

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