How to set up a new recurring invoice profile and send recurring invoices
This article explains how to set up a recurring invoice profile and then send recurring invoices to a customer.
Setting up a recurring invoice profile
1. Navigate to ‘Recurring Invoices’
Start by navigating to the ‘Work’ tab and selecting ‘Recurring Invoices’ from the drop-down menu.
Select ‘Add Recurring Profile’ in the top-right corner.
2. Complete the ‘Contact and Project Details’ area of the profile
Select the customer who will receive the recurring invoices from the ‘Contact’ drop-down menu. If you need to add the customer as a contact, select ‘Or, add a new contact’ and complete the fields provided. Please note that this will only allow you to enter the name of the new contact. You will need to navigate to ‘Contacts’ to add additional details.
If the recurring invoices you want to send relate to an existing project in FreeAgent, select the relevant project from the drop-down menu.
3. Complete the ‘Invoice Details’ area
Enter a reference number for the first invoice in the series. By default, your invoices will use global invoice sequencing but you can use alternative invoice numbering if you wish.
Set the start date of the first invoice in the series by selecting the calendar icon in the ‘Start Date’ area and then choosing the appropriate date.
If you register your business for VAT in the future, you will need to edit the recurring invoice profile to make the start date of the invoice series the same as your business's VAT registration date.
Depending on how often you want the invoices in this series to be sent, select a time period from the ‘Frequency’ drop-down menu.
If the invoicing series should stop after a specific length of time, select an end date from the calendar menu in the field next to ‘until’. If you leave this field blank, the profile will create invoices for this customer indefinitely. Please note that monthly recurring invoices are generated on the same day every month.
Set payment terms for the invoices in the recurring series by entering a number of days in the ‘Payment Terms’ field. If the number of days is zero, the invoices in the series will be marked as ‘Due on Receipt’.
Add any additional details that you would like FreeAgent to include in the invoices in the ‘Additional Text’ field.
4. Choose an option for sending the invoices
Invoices in a recurring series can be sent either automatically or manually.
To email the invoices automatically, tick the check box next to ‘Email this invoice automatically using my default template’ in the ‘Invoice Details’ section. If you haven’t created an automatic invoice email template yet, follow the instructions in this article.
Alternatively, select ‘Edit email template’ below the ‘Invoice Emails’ check box to set up a custom email template for invoices that are created in this recurring invoice series. If you’ve already set default options for this contact, these will be applied to the recurring invoice profile.
Please note that if you do not choose to send invoices in a recurring series automatically, they will be saved as ‘Drafts’ and you will need to send them manually.
Next, tick the additional relevant check boxes for the invoices in this series.
When you've finished creating the recurring invoice profile, select ‘Create New Profile’.
5. Add items to the invoice profile
In the ‘Draft’ view of the recurring invoice profile, select ‘Add Invoice Item’.
Add the invoice item details by following the instructions in this article. For information on adding date variables so that line items on the invoices can include dates which update automatically each time an invoice is generated, please see this article.
6. Activate the invoice profile
When you’re sure that the profile is set up correctly, select ‘Activate’.
You’ll be presented with a message asking whether you're sure that you want to activate the profile. Select ‘OK’ to complete the process.
Sending recurring invoices
Sending the invoices automatically
If you chose to send the invoices automatically, the recurring invoice profile will generate a new invoice on each date in the series. FreeAgent will email each invoice to your customer automatically.
Sending the invoices manually
If you did not choose to email the invoice for a recurring invoice profile automatically then it will not be sent immediately. Instead, it will be labelled as ‘Draft’ in the ‘Invoices generated from this profile’ area and you will need to send it manually. You can also edit a draft invoice before sending it.
Begin by navigating to the ‘Work’ tab and selecting ‘Recurring Invoices’ from the drop-down menu.
Select the relevant ‘Draft’ invoice from the list.
Select ‘Send by Email’ to send the invoice.