Invoicing etiquette/standard practice?
Thread poster: xxxStrastran
xxxStrastran
France
Local time: 00:53
French to English
+ ...
Jun 11, 2006

Hi forumistas

I have very recently begun life as a freelance translator/interpreter, and have completed my first two translations. I'm now wondering about what standard practice is for invoicing. What I would like to know is, is it usual to send an invoice with a completed job, a few days later, a few weeks later or even 30 days after completion?

Any thoughts would be very welcome.
Thanks!


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Evert DELOOF-SYS  Identity Verified
Belgium
Local time: 00:53
Member
English to Dutch
+ ...
Invoicing Jun 11, 2006

Hi 'Zorg',

May I suggest you enter e.g. 'invoicing' in the Search box (http://www.proz.com/?sp=search)?
This topic has been discussed several times in the past and I'm sure you'll then find any and all answers you may need.

Good luck!


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Niina Lahokoski  Identity Verified
Finland
Local time: 01:53
Member (2008)
English to Finnish
+ ...
Once a month or after every invoice Jun 11, 2006

For new clients and clients that send jobs only irregularly, I usually send the invoice right after delivery, but for regulars I collect all projects to one invoice at the end of the month.

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Lucinda  Identity Verified
Local time: 19:53
Member (2002)
Dutch to English
+ ...
When to send the invoice Jun 11, 2006

hi Zorg,

Welcome to our world. Congratulations on completing your first jobs. That must give you a good feeling.

I usually send my invoice immediaely with the job or within that same week. I just do this not to forget to send it.

I also keep a running log of the invoices sent out by week/month or whatever is convenient with:
- name of the company/ client
- invoice number, amount to be paid + currency payment is made in.
- payment practices of that client (pays immediately, within a week, net 15 days, net 30 days, needs reminder on such and such a day, pays by bank, wire transfer, PayPa;, etc.)
- date of sending that invoice.

At the moment I cannot think of anything else.

Good luck!

Lucinda


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xxxStrastran
France
Local time: 00:53
French to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks Jun 11, 2006

Lucinda Hollenberg wrote:

hi Zorg,

Welcome to our world. Congratulations on completing your first jobs. That must give you a good feeling.

I usually send my invoice immediaely with the job or within that same week. I just do this not to forget to send it.

I also keep a running log of the invoices sent out by week/month or whatever is convenient with:
- name of the company/ client
- invoice number, amount to be paid + currency payment is made in.
- payment practices of that client (pays immediately, within a week, net 15 days, net 30 days, needs reminder on such and such a day, pays by bank, wire transfer, PayPa;, etc.)
- date of sending that invoice.

At the moment I cannot think of anything else.

Good luck!

Lucinda



Thanks Lucinda!

That's very helpful. I think I'll start doing the same!

And Evert, good point - I've just had a look round with the Search function


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Sarah Brenchley  Identity Verified
Local time: 00:53
Spanish to English
+ ...
Depends on the client Jun 11, 2006

It all depends on the client and the relationship I have established with them. Some pay me for each translation whereas others process the invoices for the quarter in question and pay me sometime later the following quarter. In the case of the quarterly invoices, I am not so bothered about sending the invoices off so promptly as they will take longer to pay regardless of when I send them.

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Antoinette Verburg  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 00:53
Member (2002)
English to Dutch
+ ...
poll discussion Jun 11, 2006

Hi Zorg,

This poll and its discussion might be of interest to you:

http://www.proz.com/topic/47833

Good luck!
Antoinette


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Astrid Elke Witte  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 00:53
Member (2002)
German to English
+ ...
Invoice as soon as possible Jun 11, 2006

It is good business practice to invoice as soon as possible - preferably send the invoice by e-mail along with the translation. Don't forget to give it a unique number.

In our profession, we are expected to give at least 30 days' credit. However, the 30 days begin with the date of the invoice. For that reason, the invoice should be dated the same day that the translation is delivered, otherwise you will be giving even more credit. In any case, hardly any agency will pay the bill by the 30th day, as they are supposed to, but will wait till 30-35 days have passed and then carry out a bank transfer, which could take up to another week to hit your bank account.

If you are successful, one day you will be more interested in maths than translations.

Astrid


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Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 00:53
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
+ ...
Invoice immediately Jun 12, 2006

Zorg2006 wrote:
What I would like to know is, is it usual to send an invoice with a completed job, a few days later, a few weeks later or even 30 days after completion?


By invoicing immediately, you help the client's business run smoother. In fact, it is a good practice to send the invoice in the same e-mail (or in a separate e-mail within 5 minutes of the first one) as the one in which you deliver your work.

Young translators are afraid they might offend the client by appearing money-hungry, but the fact is that clients are all about business anyway, and they'll appreciate a translator who seems to have his financial affairs in order.


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Peter Bouillon  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 00:53
French to German
+ ...
Well... Jun 12, 2006

Zorg2006 wrote:
'm now wondering about what standard practice is for invoicing.


A curious and unexpected fact is that customers usually refuse to pay for invoices that they haven't been sent yet. This leads to the best main standard practice to use, which is …

P.


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xxxStrastran
France
Local time: 00:53
French to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks Jun 12, 2006

Your replies are all appreciated, very useful thanks!

I think, Samuel, that's maybe why I am hestitant - not wanting to appear too demanding or money-hungry. But as you say, it is all about business after all

Thanks again everyone.

[Edited at 2006-06-12 09:22]


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Erik Hansson  Identity Verified
Germany
Member (2002)
Swedish
+ ...
Immediate invoicing Jun 12, 2006

Zorg2006 wrote:

that's maybe why I am hestitant - not wanting to appear too demanding or money-hungry. But as you say, it is all about business after all

Thanks again everyone.

[Edited at 2006-06-12 09:22]


Hi Zorg,

Of course you should send off your invoice right away after delivery, or even attach the invoice to the mail with your translation. Nobody would blame you to be money-hungry or whatever just because you want to get paid for your work right away. At a supermarket you have to pay right away, our clients still have some weeks' time before it's pay-day.

Erik

**********************************
Erik Hansson ( SFÖ )
Technical translator DE-SV
Hansson Übersetzungen GmbH
Am Birkenwäldchen 38
D-01900 Bretnig-Hauswalde, Germany
Phone +49 - 3 59 52 - 321 07
Fax +49 - 3 59 52 - 322 02
E-Mail info@hansson.de
Internet www.hansson.de
Internet www.technical-translators.net
Internet www.wintitus.de
ProZ profile http://www.proz.com/pro/21654
***********************************

[Bearbeitet am 2006-06-12 14:29]


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Angela Dickson  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 23:53
French to English
+ ...
Invoice immediately Jun 12, 2006

Yes, do invoice immediately for now - as you go along, and as you have more regular clients, you may well enter into agreements whereby you, for example, invoice once a month if they are sending you lots of small jobs. This saves time for both you and them. But at the beginning it's best to just invoice everybody immediately.

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Fan Gao
Australia
Local time: 08:53
Member (2006)
English to Chinese
+ ...
Send the invoice and the project together... Jun 14, 2006

....ask your client to confirm receipt and then you are safe in the knowledge that they have recieved everything and above all...without sounding cynical...they can't turn around weeks or months later and say they never received an invoice.

Best wishes,
Mark


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