Drafting a Memo


A memorandum (memo) is a document used to clearly and concisely convey important changes or agreements that were made during the negotiations process. The intent of the memo is to explain why the agreements you made and the final contract you drafted is fair and good for your side. If your team had to make significant concessions in the bargaining process, the memo is where you explain why you accepted these losses and what you gained in doing so. This is your chance to defend your decisions. 

The intended audience for your memo is the supervisor or representative responsible for making the final agreements and approvals. You want to convince them that the contract and terms that you bargained are good for the party that you represent. 

How to Write a Memo

  • Each memo begins with a heading. Headings for business memos typically follow this format:





  • Dividing the memo into different sections will make the document easier to read and understand. Each section should begin with a heading to signify the beginning of a new topic. Suggested headings include:
    • Introduction or Summary
    • Economic Changes
    • Maintenance Workers
    • Request
  • You should discuss important points from both your drafted contract AND the financial proposal.
  • Your memo should end with a request or a call to action. You are asking your supervisor or boss to give their approval on the CBA that you drafted with the other side. 

Click on this link to see an example of a memo to a union. 

Tips and Suggestions

  • The most common mistake people make when drafting a memo is that they do not discuss the financial terms enough or reference the final cost out. 
  • Using bullet points to separate different ideas within a section makes the memo easier to read.
  • Clarity and conciseness is important!
  • Use the introduction or summary section to explain unforeseen economic or social conditions that may have impacted decision making, such as a decrease in funding or an increased cost of living. 
  • Always consider your intended audience when deciding what points to include in the letter.