Six years ago, I questioned why self-scheduling options for clients hadn’t been as successful for the legal professions as for other industries. I came up with a couple of theories: scheduling platforms that weren’t quite ready for prime-time and inadequate information on lawyers’ websites about the potential cost of an initial phone or in-person consultation. But I also wondered whether clients who decide to hire a full-service lawyer also expect full-service in the form of an actual human to schedule an appointment.
Fast forward a few years, and the capabilities of self-scheduling tools have dramatically improved . Today, lawyers can direct a client to schedule a meeting, collect a consultation fee up front or send the client text reminders – two measures that drastically cut down on no-shows. Clients have changed also, and millennials entering the professional world often favor DIY tools than having to place a phone call and speak to a human.
With so many tools available in the market, how to decide? That depends on various factors including the size of your office, the cost of the subscription fee, compatibility with your other practice management systems and most of all, client preferences. To help you with that decision, I’ve prepared a charge comparing a dozen self-scheduling platforms commonly used by small businesses. Many offer free entry level service, or free trials so you can test them out and decide. You can enter your email below to download the chart (if you prefer not to share your address you may download the chart by clicking here).