On this page we go into one of the most commonly used abbreviations, which has meanwhile spilled over from purely professional use to private use: fyi (or FYI). This comes from English and means "for your interest" or "for your information", i.e. "for your information" or, a little more elegantly, "for your information". But many wonder what to do when they receive a message with this abbreviation. do i have to answer Can I ignore the message completely? Why isn't "z. K.” abbreviated as before, i.e. with “for information”? And why do we like to use the abbreviation in private chats?
The abbreviation stands for the first letters of the three English words "for your information" (also "for your interest", the meaning is exactly the same). As a rule, this message will reach you as an email, to which no reply is expected. What is meant is that the message is usually only intended for you to take note of - and a reaction to it is superfluous.
However, just because you don't have to or don't need to reply doesn't mean you can ignore the message. It is not uncommon for “fyi” (or “FYI”) in a message to refer to a topic that the email conversation had previously been about or that you discussed verbally with your colleague or team leader. Anyone who sends you certain information "for information" or "for information" does not release you from the obligation to find out more about this topic.
Attention, by the way – the abbreviation “fya” is often used in office-internal mail traffic (or with a messenger like Slack). This in turn means "for your amusement" and is usually attached to a message with funny content that is intended to break up the boring everyday office routine on a cold, wet Monday morning. From time to time, of course, you can also send a message with funny content to the team or to selected colleagues.
Of course this is not forbidden, there may be circumstances where a reply is just nice and signals to the original sender that you are in the know. A scenario is conceivable in which the sender sends a document that requires minor revisions in order to close with a fyi: "fyi, won't be back in the office until Thursday". This should mean that the revision must be made - but not immediately, since the sender can only view the result on Thursday.
Usually an answer is not necessary. If at the end of an e-mail it says something like: “fyi – I’ll have dinner now”, then of course you don’t have to answer, internal communication is also about not sending too many unnecessary messages back and forth.
But that doesn't mean that emails with a fyi note should rarely be taken seriously. You often receive important documents for an ongoing process - for example: "fyi - here are the documents from the customer that you have been waiting for". In this case, it shows that the sender is simply wrong with the abbreviation used or does not understand its meaning 100 percent. It would be more appropriate to provide the mail with a subject that directly indicates the importance of the message or attachment. A fyi almost always conveys that there is no urgency.
That depends on the context. Because while office slang is universal, at least when it comes to things like "fyi," you need to know exactly when to use that abbreviation without being misunderstood. Even if fyi has meanwhile established itself in the private sphere (fyi is easier and faster to type than, for example, "for your information"), there are still many people in the country who initially do not understand what fyi means in their professional life.
This applies even more to the oral use of this acronym. If you happen to meet in the elevator or in the canteen and want to inform your colleague or supervisor that a certain matter has been completed, you run the risk of being misunderstood. Because the three letters f, y and i are pronounced in English, which can easily lead to misunderstandings, especially among older colleagues. "fyi, the message to the customer is as good as out" just means that you have not yet sought contact with customers, but plan to take care of it soon - such a sentence has great potential, misinterpreted will. The bottom line is that one should be careful with spoken abbreviations and acronyms. If a colleague does not understand
By the way, using "fyi" internally is still better than external. As a rule, you have a more distant relationship with your business partners and customers than with the colleague next door, which is why it is not always advisable to use such abbreviations in external communication. Outsiders may feel a little piqued by such a message if you send it without further explanation. For customers and business partners, you should definitely take the time to write a detailed message and to place a small note at the end: "As additional information, I have attached the overview from last year to this mail."
You can keep it however you want. In many cases, the abbreviation is capitalized, as is known from other examples, such as political parties, ADAC or the "IT" department. But it is not a requirement to use FYI, fyi is just as good.
However, you should avoid using one spelling: a mixture of upper and lower case letters. This is absolutely unusual. So watch out. For example, if you use a Microsoft tool, such as Outlook, and put "fyi" at the beginning of a sentence, the program automatically converts the first letter to a capital letter if it is lowercase - and "Fyi" is there unintentionally.
There are said to be contemporaries who do not find the use of abbreviations very attractive. Even anglicisms are not always and everywhere well received. And only the combination of both - many colleagues soon wave it off.
But there's nothing wrong with using the fyi (or FYI) acronym every now and then. There are processes in an office where the three letters indicate the right degree of importance. "For your information" is of course also possible, but that sounds much more official and like an important memo. Anyone who writes fyi in an e-mail or in a messenger chat makes the statement that the matter should not be ignored, but that it is not urgent either.
In many cases, however, it is not a question of providing information at all, but simply of letting them know that you may not be available for questions at first (short break, lunch break, the reasons can be varied). After returning to work, however, one expects that the recipient of the fyi message has dealt with what the content is about.