A question about some phrases using "office":
- out of office
- out of the office
- outside the office
Do they mean the same thing?
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Out of the office: This means "on vacation". Example:
I will be out of the office until January 2. Please leave me a voicemail.
Outside the office: This refers to an area just outside the room. Example:
A long queue formed outside the office after the computer system became unresponsive.
By extension, it might also be used metaphorically to mean "while not at work":
John only shows his sense of humour outside the office.
Out of office: This is a completely different meaning of office: an elected or appointed government position.
After a series of unpopular decisions, the entire board of education was voted out of office.
out of office
doesn't make sense by itself. Since you are referring to specific office that is countable, an article is needed, as in example 2. It works with uncountable nouns though, for example:
I am out of coffee.
out of the office
This is normally used, as in:
I am out of the office until Friday.
Basically you are away from your workplace.
outside the office
This refers to a physical location in relation to the office, as in:
There is parking outside the office.
You could use outside of here with basically the same meaning.
Out of Office - More common in emails, when I send out company newsletters we get autoreplies saying 'out of office back dd/mm'
Out of the office - again used in emails, more of a formal thing but is more grammatically correct
Outside the office - Usually means when the physical being is only outside teh front door, no more than 6 foot away.