Do you need an action from someone else to get your work going?
Maybe you’re worried that “when you have a chance” lacks the formality you need.
That’s where we come in, though!
This article has gathered the best phrases showing you how to say “when you have a chance” professionally:
- At your earliest convenience
- When you have a moment
- When you find the time
- As time permits
- When you are available
- In your own time
- When you have the opportunity
- When you are free
- At a time that is convenient for you
- When it is feasible for you
Keep reading to learn what to say instead of “when you have a chance.” We’ve also provided some examples to help you understand each one.
1. At Your Earliest Convenience
One great formal way to say “when you have a chance” is “at your earliest convenience.”
It’s one of the best options to use if you’re trying to sound professional and respectful.
This shows the recipient you’re happy to wait for them. It’s a good option if you would like them to do something, but there’s no real pressure regarding when they have to complete a task.
We recommend using this when emailing an employee. It shows you appreciate that they might have other work to do, so you don’t want to rush them into doing a new task.
However, “at your earliest convenience” also means you expect the work to be done soon. It doesn’t mean that it’s entirely up to the employee. It still implies you’d like them to focus on it once they finish the current task.
You can also review the following example:
You should reach out to him at your earliest convenience. I believe he’s expecting you to contact him.
2. When You Have a Moment
“When you have a moment” is a great phrase to include in formal emails.
It is respectful and direct, showing you’re happy to wait until someone is ready to do something for you.
For instance, let’s say you’d like to set up a meeting with a client. You might want them to call you, but you may also know they’re quite busy at the minute.
You can simply email them to ask for a call “when you have a moment.” This shows you understand they’re busy and will happily wait while they figure some things out.
This sample email should clear some things up:
Dear Miss Smith,
Please call me when you have a moment. I would like to set up a meeting with you to discuss this further.
All the best,
3. When You Find the Time
Feel free to use “when you find the time” to encourage someone to complete a task for you.
It’s a friendly option that shows you’re willing to work around someone’s schedule.
Generally, this works well when asking employees for work. It shows you’re happy to let them continue with their current projects, but you would like them to consider your new task as well.
From there, it’s up to the employee to prioritize. They may choose to get back to you immediately or wait. Either way, you should make it clear that it’s fine for them to choose.
We also recommend reviewing the following email example:
When you find the time, please send me the files. I must have them on my desk before the end of the day tomorrow.
4. As Time Permits
Another way to say “when you have a chance” is “as time permits.” It’s incredibly professional and works well in most business emails.
Generally, it works well when emailing your boss. If you need help, you can ask them for it by including this phrase to let them know it isn’t urgent.
It’s a respectful way to show you appreciate how busy your boss might be. However, you would really appreciate it if they find the time to help you.
Here’s a useful example to help you understand it:
Dear Mr. Turner,
Please reach out to them as time permits. You seem to have a better understanding of the situation than I do.
Thank you so much,
5. When You Are Available
It’s worth using “when you are available” to let someone know you’re waiting on them.
This is a good way to be a bit more demanding and put a bit of pressure on the recipient.
Don’t worry; even though it’s more pressure, it’s not a rude phrase. In fact, it works quite well in emails because it shows you understand that someone might be preoccupied.
Try using it when emailing a coworker. This could be a good way to get more information out of them if you’re working on the same project.
Also, check out the following example:
When you are available, please send me the document. I’d like to know how far into it you’ve gotten.
All the best,
6. In Your Own Time
People don’t like to be rushed. It’s in our nature to start stressing if there’s a specific deadline in place, so it’s best to avoid setting deadlines for less crucial work.
One great choice is “in your own time.” It works well because it avoids setting a deadline. Instead, it suggests that someone can work at their own pace.
This phrase is highly effective if you don’t want to seem bossy.
We recommend using it when emailing a client. It shows there’s no rush for them to do something for you, but you would appreciate it if they could get on top of it quickly.
Here’s a great sample email to show you how it works:
Dear Miss Lopez,
Please get back to me in your own time. It’s vital that we discuss these matters before we move forward.
All the best,
7. When You Have the Opportunity
You can use “when you have the opportunity” instead of “when you have a chance.”
They’re very similar phrases, but including “the opportunity” will help you to spice things up.
For example, you can use it when asking an employee to complete a task for you. It shows you’d like them to get on top of it as soon as the opportunity presents itself.
It’s very professional and patient. It shows that you’re willing to wait for a while before ordering an employee to do it. However, it also shows that you’d prefer a task to get done quickly.
If you’re still unsure, review the following email sample:
Can you please get in touch when you have the opportunity? I’d like you to reach out to them and let them know everything is okay.
8. When You Are Free
For a more open-ended alternative, you can use “when you are free.”
It’s a great way to replace “when you have a chance” and shows you’re willing to wait for a free slot to open.
We recommend using it when contacting a colleague who’s out of the office. It shows you don’t know what they’re doing with their day, but you don’t want to interrupt them.
While you might not have access to their calendar, this is a great way to let them know you’ll wait for them. It’s polite and respectful, so it’s always worth using in an email.
Perhaps this example will also help you to understand it:
When you are free, can you please call me? I’d like to discuss some things with you over the phone.
Thank you so much,
9. At a Time That Is Convenient for You
It’s best to let someone decide when they want to do a task for you. If you aren’t in a position of power (i.e., if you’re not the boss), then there’s no point in demanding work from someone.
Instead, you should use “at a time that is convenient for you.” It shows you have no power in the situation, but you would like someone to complete a task.
You can try it when contacting your professor. It shows you’d appreciate it if they could review your work, but you will also understand if they’re too busy.
Here’s a great example to help you understand it better:
Dear Professor Kirkland,
Please review this at a time that is convenient for you. I’d very much appreciate your input on my project.
All the best,
10. When It Is Feasible for You
We also recommend trying “when it is feasible for you.” It’s a highly effective formal synonym that shows you’re willing to work around someone’s availability.
Basically, it shows you’ll let them decide when to work through a task. It’s polite and helpful, showing you’ll let the recipient take control of their availability.
You can use it when emailing a customer. It shows that they have all the power, and you don’t want to upset them by demanding they do something for you within a given timeframe.
You can also review this sample email:
Dear Mr. Perkins,
Please call me when it is feasible for you. I’m so excited to hear your feedback on our newest product.
Martin holds a Master’s degree in Finance and International Business. He has six years of experience in professional communication with clients, executives, and colleagues. Furthermore, he has teaching experience from Aarhus University. Martin has been featured as an expert in communication and teaching on Forbes and Shopify. Read more about Martin here.