Sharing availability
Thread poster: Kerensa Cracknell

Kerensa Cracknell  Identity Verified
Singapore
Local time: 17:10
Member (2007)
French to English
Mar 21

Hi everyone,

I seem to spend a lot of time every morning replying to "Are you available for XYZ job due in 1/2/3 days?"-type emails. I live in Singapore (GMT+8) so a lot of my work from France comes in overnight and I often miss things because clients don't know that I'm available the following day but will work on something before they get in to the office in France.

I have looked for a calendar-sharing app or online calendar/schedule that I can share with my clients, but can't find a simple one that is easy to share. My husband suggested using an Ooo email that I turn on every night and off every morning but that's a bit of a pain and it means remembering to do it before I go to bed, which I won't always manage to do!

Can anyone suggest a way to share my availability easily with clients, e.g. a link to a user-friendly (free) online calendar, etc.? Does LinkedIn have this kind of functionality? Any ideas welcome.

Thanks in advance!


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inesec  Identity Verified
Latvia
Member (2014)
German to English
+ ...
Specify your availability in e-mail message body Mar 21

As almost all of my major clients are based in USA but I live in Latvia, I have found that the best method is to specify my availability in e-mail message body. I specify my availability hours in my local time and in EST. For me, it works nicely.

[Edited at 2017-03-21 06:04 GMT]


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Sebastian Witte  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 10:10
Member (2004)
German to English
+ ...
Have you tried calendar.google.com (web-based version) and the Google Calendar app? Mar 21

Kerensa Cracknell wrote:

Hi everyone,

I seem to spend a lot of time every morning replying to "Are you available for XYZ job due in 1/2/3 days?"-type emails. I live in Singapore (GMT+8) so a lot of my work from France comes in overnight and I often miss things because clients don't know that I'm available the following day but will work on something before they get in to the office in France.

I have looked for a calendar-sharing app or online calendar/schedule that I can share with my clients, but can't find a simple one that is easy to share. My husband suggested using an Ooo email that I turn on every night and off every morning but that's a bit of a pain and it means remembering to do it before I go to bed, which I won't always manage to do!

Can anyone suggest a way to share my availability easily with clients, e.g. a link to a user-friendly (free) online calendar, etc.? Does LinkedIn have this kind of functionality? Any ideas welcome.

Thanks in advance!


Hi,

All it takes is a free Gmail account.

I am not an IT wizard but this definitely looks promising. The user reviews do, too.

Best regards,

Sebastian Witte
www.jwstrans.net


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Lianne van de Ven  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 04:10
Member (2008)
English to Dutch
+ ...
Google calendar options Mar 21

You can share a google calendar and enter your busy/non-busy hours (your actual availability for the next few hours, days, month etc.). There are different levels of sharing possible (read only, with or without details, edit and edit/manage). But I am not sure how many clients would make use of booking time on your calendar without you having seen the job specifics. Many clients send out requests for availability/work on a first come first serve basis. It could work for some regular clients, though. The google calendar can be displayed on a webpage, which would be the easiest approach. I doubt many agencies will have a look at it though. I can only see this work if you turn on auto-reply overnight and include a link to your calendar if someone wants to know your immediate availability. Of course you need to keep your calendar updated.
I am not sure the google calendar can be displayed (embedded) on your proz profile, which, btw, has its own calendar where you can display your general level of availability, but you could post a link to your published calendar.

[Edited at 2017-03-21 14:21 GMT]


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Arianne Farah  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 04:10
Member (2008)
English to French
When I was in China... Mar 21

I had the same problem (at least with agencies that didn't have satellite offices in Asia). I would let my clients know to check my skype tag - I would usually write "available for emergencies; up to 1000 words" or "not available" or "partial availability, no emergency availability"; since I schedule 3000-4000 words a day, even if a couple of clients took me up on my emergency offer, I could still manage with my regular workload. However, the email from the client/agency had to CONFIRM the project, not just ask if I were available, and the confirmation had to be explicit/clear. Generally they would write something along the lines of "Project confirmed if you can deliver by tomorrow morning". It was simple and efficient and worked for me for many years

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Texte Style
Local time: 10:10
French to English
tbh Mar 21

There's a calendar here on Proz too, but tbh, most PMs won't ever bother to check it. They'll send out a mail to whoever they think of and give the job to the first person who's free.

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