What to do when a customer does not confirm receipt of your invoice ?
Thread poster: Marie Hélène AFONSO

Marie Hélène AFONSO  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 03:51
English to French
+ ...
Jul 1, 2013

I sent my invoice a week ago to this new customer asking to confirm receipt and got no answer. Do you think it is bad sign/necessary to insist or is it "common" to receive no answer (maybe they consider this useless extra load of work for them). What is your view on that point ?

 

Vadim Kadyrov  Identity Verified
Ukraine
Local time: 04:51
Member (2011)
English to Russian
+ ...
I would strongly recommend you Jul 1, 2013

to get this confirmation by any means - phone call, etc.

 

ATIL KAYHAN  Identity Verified
Turkey
Local time: 04:51
Member (2007)
Turkish to English
+ ...
You can resend Jul 1, 2013

I would say it is rather common to receive no response. What I would do is to send the invoice again, stating that you have not heard from them recently. If it is not their custom give a response, they probably will not anyhow.

 

Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 02:51
Member (2007)
English
+ ...
My clients don't like confirming anything Jul 1, 2013

I find it hard enough getting confirmation of receipt of translations, but at least it's totally valid for me to hassle them about that by referring to QA and sign-off etc. Constant reminders about the invoice would just annoy them, I'm sure. That's why I try always to send the two documents together. I don't see any disadvantage in that. They can't exactly confirm receipt of the work and then claim ignorance of the invoice then.

 

Yael Ramon  Identity Verified
Israel
Local time: 04:51
German to Hebrew
+ ...
send through regular snail mail with receipt (registered letter) Jul 1, 2013

if you still do not get a receipt after that, you might as well try legal ways - if this is a meaningful amount, or just forget about it and hope they did get it and will pay when time comes...

 

Agnes Lenkey  Identity Verified
German to Spanish
+ ...
Send translation and invoice always together, and make a call Jul 1, 2013

Hello Marie Hélène,

Like Sheila said, send the translation always together with the invoice, this is the simplest way, because everything is very clear. I myself always send both things at the same time. Sometimes this is not possible, for various reasons, in this case you need to find any excuse/any question and make a phone call to confirm what you need to know. I do so when needed.

In this case you may simply say "I call you because I didn't hear back from you and I would only like to confirm if you received my invoice correctly". Very important: Before making any business, make sure you have the proper phone numbers, etc.

Hope this helps for the future, regards,

Agnes


 

Jennifer Forbes  Identity Verified
Local time: 02:51
Member (2006)
French to English
+ ...
I agree with Sheila and Agnes Jul 1, 2013

Like Sheila and Agnes, I always send my invoice with the translation whenever possible and ask for confirmation of receipt at the time because thus, if the client has received the translation, they must have received the invoice too.
For clients who insist on receiving the invoice at the end of the month, I include with the translation a mention of how much the invoice will come to (as per the purchase order) and then send the invoice at the end of the month, asking for confirmation of its receipt. If confirmation is not forthcoming, there's no reason why you shouldn't telephone your client to ask for confirmation that your invoice has been received. Just efficient business practice, I'd say.
Best of luck,
Jenny


 

Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 02:51
Member (2007)
English
+ ...
Monthly invoices Jul 1, 2013

Jenny Forbes wrote:
For clients who insist on receiving the invoice at the end of the month

I forgot about them. Actually, I'm more than happy to opt for this with clients who have frequent need for work from me, as I find the reduction in admin more than makes up for the slightly longer credit allowed. But then we're talking about regular, trusted (more or lessicon_smile.gif) clients. They know that there's an invoice to be paid. If the money doesn't arrive, I send a polite reminder. If they say "What invoice?"icon_rolleyes.gif, I send another copy for immediate payment. If it happened too frequently then I'd clearly need to review that status of "trusted client". But I don't demand confirmation of receipt.


 

Łukasz Gos-Furmankiewicz  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 03:51
English to Polish
+ ...
See below Jul 1, 2013

Marie Hélène AFONSO wrote:

I sent my invoice a week ago to this new customer asking to confirm receipt and got no answer. Do you think it is bad sign/necessary to insist or is it "common" to receive no answer (maybe they consider this useless extra load of work for them). What is your view on that point ?


Marie Hélène, it's really poor etiquette not to acknowledge an express request or question. It may be common, but I hope it's not, I don't think it is, and I hope it never will be. I'd be worried if a client of mine failed to answer such, but at the same time I know that many clients are overloaded with both substantive and administrative work, and so they can lose track of things or even stop being able to react real-time (kind of a brain overload effect--think solos and partners who personally manage their businesses).

I would very kindly ask them again after a couple of days, then phone them, and eventually use registered mail, and then another time registered mail return receipt requested. Clients may realise they're in arrears or late with the admin but still feel hurt or offended when they meet decisive, formal reaction. Thus, I'd normally avoid escalating in order not to alienate clients. This said, if two calls went totally unheeded and nobody picked up the phone, the third would be a final call.


 

Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 03:51
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Call them Jul 1, 2013

A phone call is due. This way you will also get an idea of the kind of people you are dealing with.

 

Henry Hinds  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 19:51
English to Spanish
+ ...
Worry Jul 1, 2013

Worry about what you are going to do when the client does not pay you. Not acknowledging receipt of your invoice or the job itself is just the start.

 


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