A service or labor invoice is a document used by service providers to detail the services rendered, associated costs, and the materials used to perform a job. It is an essential tool to communicate the scope of work performed, ensuring transparency and facilitating prompt payment for your services.
Whether you are a service-based small business, self-employed, or an independent contractor relying on regular client payments for services, you should ensure that your service or labor invoices are up to par with your client’s needs and tailored for your professional requirements.
When to Use
There are many instances in which you may be required to send a service or labor invoice:
- Landscaping services
- Cleaning services
- Auto repair services
- Construction services
- Consultancy services
- General contracting services
- Subcontracting services
- Small business service provision
What to Include
You should include all of the following in your service invoice:
- Contact information: Include your business’s phone number, address, and email address. Include any professional licensing information as well, if applicable.
- Invoice number: Every invoice should have a unique invoice number.
- Work performed: Outline your work and the dates it was done.
- Materials: List all materials used on the job, especially if you are billing for them separately.
- Labor: Provide the working hours on the project, including a line item for how much that labor costs.
- Total cost: Include a subtotal and total cost section, including taxes or other fees as applicable.
- Additional notes: Include any suggestions or special remarks in this section.
- Payment: Include payment methods you accept, how to pay, and the due date.
In general, it is advisable to separate materials and labor costs on the invoice if the materials are:
- used for a long time
- non-standard and not included in the labor cost
When Is the Best Time to Invoice Contract Labor Clients?
When hired for short-term work or small projects, many contractors provide the invoice after the work is concluded, which presents a smaller risk of non-payment.
Waiting until the end to invoice may not make sense for your business needs. You need money flowing in to support your business so that you may ask for payment before, during, and after the job. Many contractors ask for payment through:
- An up-front deposit of a percentage of the total project cost
- Bi-weekly or monthly invoices
Communicate your payment expectations clearly to your client. In each succeeding invoice, indicate the amount already paid. This makes clients feel comfortable knowing their past payments are accounted for.
Invoicing Tips for Contract Labor Workers
Following these invoice tips can help you maintain a good relationship with labor clients:
- Follow up: Contact clients if they fail to pay on time. You provided a valuable service and deserve compensation. Be friendly and courteous, as the clients may have forgotten.
- Add professional recommendations: In your notes, include recommendations for future services that might be helpful. For example, maybe the appliance you installed would benefit from future inspections or regular maintenance. This can drive revenue and help clients feel cared for.
- Keep detailed records: Document every invoice, payment, or other vital information about that client. It could be helpful for future work or if you need to refer to it later.
You can create your own service or labor invoice using our template builder. Don’t forget to include every detail you need to help you get paid for your hard work.
See below a sample of a service/labor invoice, and you can download your own template in Word or Excel format: