Correspondence means letters sent or received. Another word for “Correspondence” is “Mail.” In our offices and Businesses, We receive letters, parcels, telegrams, internal memos, fax, email, text messages or SMS (Short Message Service), and other documents, which we all know as mail or correspondence.
Correspondence records are those documents used to keep track of correspondence in an organization. They show evidence of important transactions, letters, reasons for writing and those involved, dates, addresses, emails, and other important messages.
TYPES OF CORRESPONDENCE
There are three main types of correspondence, they are:
- In-coming mails
- Outgoing mails
- Postage book.
1. In-Coming Mails:
These are letters that come into an organization. In-coming correspondence will reach the records offices in several different ways. Some will come through the regular post office or other courier services, like, DHL, UPS, etc.
Other incoming emails could come via email, or with the growth in technology, through text messaging:- Short Message Service (SMS) or Multimedia Messaging Services (MMS).
Examples of In-Coming Mails are:
Computer printouts, e.g., email or other data
METHODS OF MAIL DELIVERY
Mails or letters can be delivered either by post or by hand to the recipients in two ways:
a. Delivery by Post: People pay for a private mailbox or bag in the post office where their emails are deposited safely and locked till the owner comes (to the post office) with the keys to pick up mail. The postman also delivers received mail to the appropriate addresses with authority from the post office management.
b. Delivery by Hand: The emails that can be delivered by hand include letters, circulars, memos, handbills, notices of different sizes, etc. The mail must be handled with care so that the recipient will receive it without complaint and on time.
All emails are sorted out first in the mail room before being distributed to the appropriate persons or organization(S).
2. Outgoing Mails:
These are emails that are going out of or from the organization. The secretary or clerk in the office handles such emails with care and treats them with the urgency required.
In smaller organizations, the receptionist can also see to it that such emails are handled appropriately and accountability and reference.
Examples of outgoing mail are letters, parcels, and computer printouts like emails, SMS, memos, telegrams, and other related emails.
3. Postage Book:
This book records accurate and full details of emails and other documents that need postage. The book contains the postage stamps used in the mail, the date, and the address.
USES OF CORRESPONDENCE RECORDS
They are used:
1. For evidence of receiving and attending to emails.
2. To show the correct date a mail was received.
3. To record information about the content(s) of emails.
4. To show how the organization handled the issue in context. Tells whether an answer has been given or not.
5. To show exactly what agreement was made and the date of the decision.
6. It confirms the delivery of mail.
7. It shows the origin of the mail and who or unit it was addressed to.
CLASSIFICATION OF CORRESPONDENCE RECORDS
- Inward Book or Inward Register
- Outward Book or Outward Register
- Dispatch Book