Shift Change Request Letter: How To Write It Right!

Key Takeaways:

  • Understand the purpose of a shift change request letter.
  • Steps to writing an effective shift change request letter.
  • Template to guide the writing process.
  • Tips for making your request more compelling.


Writing a shift change request letter is a common need for employees who need to adjust their work schedules due to personal obligations or health reasons.

This article provides a step-by-step guide on how to write an effective shift change request letter, complete with a template and tips for success.

Shift Change Request document on a glass table, surrounded by a pair of reading glasses, some stationery items, and a digital tablet display

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Understanding the Purpose

A shift change request letter is a formal way to ask your employer for a change in your work schedule.

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The purpose of this letter is to communicate your need for a schedule change in a professional and clear manner.

Steps to Writing Your Letter

1. Start with the Basics

Begin with your name, position, and employee identification number (if applicable), followed by the date and your supervisor’s name and title.

2. State Your Request Clearly

In the opening paragraph, clearly state your request for a shift change. Mention the specific shift times you are requesting.

3. Provide a Reason

Explain the reason for your request. Be honest and concise. If it’s a personal matter, a simple mention will suffice without going into details.

4. Acknowledge the Impact

Recognize any potential impact your shift change may have on the team or workflow and suggest possible solutions.

5. Express Gratitude

Show appreciation for the consideration of your request. A positive tone can make a big difference.

6. Close Formally

End with a formal closing, such as “Sincerely,” followed by your signature and printed name.

Template for Shift Change Request Letter

[Your Name]
[Your Position]
[Employee ID (if applicable)]

[Supervisor’s Name]
[Supervisor’s Title]

Dear [Supervisor’s Name],

I am writing to formally request a change in my work schedule. My current shift, [current shift hours], has become challenging for me due to [briefly state the reason, e.g., childcare responsibilities, educational commitments, health issues].

I would like to request a change to [desired shift hours]. This change will [explain how the shift change will help resolve your issue].

I am aware that this request may impact [mention any team or workflow impact], and I am prepared to [suggest solutions or ways to minimize the impact].

I appreciate your understanding and am grateful for your consideration of my request.

Please let me know if there is any further information needed or if a meeting is required to discuss this request in more detail.


[Your Signature (if sending a hard copy)]
[Your Printed Name]

Tips for a Successful Request

  • Be Professional: Use a formal tone and format.
  • Be Concise: Keep the letter brief and to the point.
  • Provide Solutions: Show that you have considered the impact on the workplace.
  • Timing: Submit your request in a timely manner, allowing for any adjustments in scheduling.

Real-Life Example

John, a customer service representative, needed to change his shift due to evening classes.

He followed these steps and provided a clear and concise reason, which helped his manager understand and accommodate his request.


A well-written shift change request letter can significantly increase your chances of getting your desired schedule. Remember to be professional, clear, and considerate of your employer’s needs as well as your own.

Tips for Writing a Shift Change Request Letter

  • Ensure clarity in stating your request.
  • Be honest about your reasons.
  • Acknowledge and provide solutions for any impacts.
  • Maintain a respectful and professional tone.

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q1: What is a Shift Change Request Letter?

Answer: A Shift Change Request Letter is a written request from an employee to their employer asking for a change in their work schedule or shift. The purpose of this letter is to officially communicate the request and provide a reason for the change.

Q2: What should be included in a Shift Change Request Letter?

Answer: A Shift Change Request Letter should include the following:

  • Date and address of the sender
  • Date and address of the recipient
  • A salutation or greeting
  • The request for a shift change
  • The reason for the request
  • The preferred new shift schedule
  • The request for consideration
  • A closing statement
  • Signature of the sender

Q3: How to write a Shift Change Request Letter?

Answer: Writing a Shift Change Request Letter involves the following steps:

  • Determine the reason for the request
  • Choose a polite and professional tone
  • Start with a formal address and date
  • Write a clear and concise request for a shift change
  • Explain the reason for the request
  • Provide the preferred new shift schedule
  • Close with a professional statement
  • Sign the letter
  • Proofread the letter before sending it

Q4: What are some reasons for requesting a shift change?

Answer: Some reasons for requesting a shift change include:

  • Family responsibilities
  • School schedule
  • Health issues
  • Transportation issues
  • Personal preference
  • Additional job or employment
  • Conflicts with other commitments

Q5: Can an employer deny a Shift Change Request Letter?

Answer: Yes, an employer can deny a Shift Change Request Letter. The decision to grant or deny a request for a shift change depends on various factors, including company policies, workload, and staffing levels. 

However, the employer should provide a written response to the request, either granting or denying the request and providing a reason for the decision.