You should try to avoid pressuring people to hit deadlines. That’s why phrases like “at your convenience” come in handy. They allow people to decide when something suits them around their schedule.
However, is “at your convenience” the best phrase to include in an email?
This article will explore that question and provide you with alternatives.
Is It Polite to Say “At Your Convenience”?
It is polite to say “at your convenience.” It lets the recipient know you do not expect them to hit a specific deadline.
It’s useful in professional emails. We recommend it to show that you would like someone to get around to a task, but you do not want to pressure them.
This example should help you understand it:
I would like you to complete this assignment at your convenience.
- It’s an effective way to ask someone for help without giving them a deadline.
- It’s polite and patient.
- It’s bland.
- Loads of people use it, making it repetitive and overused in emails.
“At your convenience” is certainly one of the best formal options you have. Although, we still think you should consider other ways to say “at your convenience.”
So, read on to find the best synonyms for “at your convenience.” There are plenty of great choices available.
What to Say Instead of “At Your Convenience”
- When you’re ready
- As soon as you can
- As soon as possible
- When it suits you
- When it fits your schedule
- If you’re not too busy
- When you have nothing else to do
- When you get a moment
- If you have time to spare
1. When You’re Ready
Another way to say “at your convenience” is “when you’re ready.” It’s a great way to let the recipient decide when to complete a task.
We recommend this when you don’t want to apply pressure on the recipient.
So, you can use it when emailing employees. Even though you’re the boss, you should try to avoid pressuring people into completing tasks.
This is a great way to set a task with no specific deadlines. It’s worth using if you want to keep things light-hearted and friendly between yourself and your employees.
Here’s a useful email example to help you with it:
Could you please arrange a meeting with the board when you’re ready? I’d like to get it sorted over the next week.
2. As Soon as You Can
“As soon as you can” is a more conversational alternative to “at your convenience.” It’s great to use when asking colleagues for help.
We recommend using it when you don’t have authority over the recipient. Instead, it’s a respectful way to ask for help without sounding bossy or demanding.
Using “you can” also leaves the choice up to the recipient. It shows that it’s up to them to decide when they want to start helping you.
Also, this example will help you understand it:
I would like you to get on top of this as soon as you can. We don’t need it right away, but I would appreciate your help.
3. As Soon as Possible
For a more common and formal alternative, you can rely on “as soon as possible.” It’s worth using to keep your emails fair and polite without putting pressure on someone.
“As soon as possible” often implies that you don’t mind waiting on a task’s completion. Instead, you would rather the recipient worked through their own tasks before starting on something new.
You can also use the abbreviation “ASAP” in similar contexts. Feel free to switch between “as soon as possible” and “ASAP” to keep things fresh.
You can also review this sample email:
Could you call them as soon as possible? I appreciate your busy schedule, but I’d like them to know they’re important to us.
4. When It Suits You
You never know when someone is going to have the time to do something for you. Therefore, “when it suits you” works wonders here.
It’s a better alternative to “at your convenience” when you respect the recipient’s time.
It shows you have given the power to the recipient. Now, it’s up to them to decide when (or if) they will help you complete a task.
You could try it when emailing a new employer. It shows you’re keen to meet with them, but you don’t want to take advantage of their schedule.
Here’s a great email sample to show you how it works:
Dear Mr. Tilly,
I would like to arrange this interview when it suits you. Please let me know which days are most appropriate.
All the best,
5. When It Fits Your Schedule
Everyone’s schedule is different. It’s very unlikely that any two people have identical work schedules, regardless of where they work or what they do.
That’s why “when it fits your schedule” is useful here. It shows that you’re willing to wait for someone if they’re not quite ready to complete a task for you.
Try using “when it fits your schedule” to email your colleagues. If you’re in a team project with them, this should be an effective way to let them know you’ll work around them.
Why not check out this example as well:
We can get it done when it fits your schedule. There’s no pressure on this, so take as much time as you need.
All the best,
6. If You’re Not Too Busy
Nobody wants to upset their boss when asking for help. A good way to avoid any problems is with “if you’re not too busy.”
This alternative to “at your convenience” allows you to be respectful and polite. It’s useful when emailing your boss because it shows that you don’t want to interrupt them.
Try it the next time you need your boss’s help. They’ll be more likely to reply to you and offer their services if you start with a polite phrase like this.
We also recommend the following example:
Dear Mr. Smith,
Please contact me if you’re not too busy. I have a few ideas that I’d like to run by you before I continue with them.
7. When You Have Nothing Else to Do
“When you have nothing else to do” is another great alternative to “at your convenience.” We highly recommend using it when emailing employees.
It’s great because it allows you to set new tasks with zero pressure. It allows the employees to decide when they’re happy to start working on a project for you.
Here’s a great email example to show you how it works:
You can get on this when you have nothing else to do. It’s not all that important, so take all the time you need.
All the best,
8. When You Get a Moment
Feel free to use “when you get a moment” instead of “at your convenience.” You can try it when emailing customers when you don’t know how busy they are.
Naturally, this phrase works best when you’re not entirely familiar with the recipient.
It suggests that you don’t know much about their schedule. So, it gives the recipient the freedom to choose when to work on something for you.
For instance, let’s say you sent a survey to a customer. You can use “when you get a moment” to let them choose when to complete that survey.
Check out this example as well:
Can you complete this when you get a moment? The survey itself isn’t important, but I’d like to hear your verdict.
9. If You Have Time to Spare
It’s worth using “if you have time to spare” to avoid disrupting someone’s busy schedule.
You can use it when emailing your boss. It shows you’re keen to hear from them but don’t want to rush them.
Also, using “if” instead of “when” lets your boss choose when to act. They may completely ignore your request, and that’s okay because you gave them the option to by using “if.”
This sample email should also clear things up:
Dear Ms. Kites,
I would like to hear from you if you have time to spare. I’m sure you have a few good ideas about this.
All the best,