systemising your law firm

Systemising Your Law Firm While Keeping The Human Element

[sponsored blog post by] Streamlining, optimizing and automating are key to growing or scaling a practice. According to research by Clio, the average lawyer billed just 2.5 hours of an 8-hour day. That means either they do not take on enough clients, or lawyers across the US are struggling with inefficiency. 

Firms using multiple technologies as part of their operations bring in 40% more revenue per lawyer each month. But, how can firms built on personal connection introduce systemization without sacrificing human relationships?

The answer comes from understanding where clients want efficiency and delivering a service that anticipates their needs. Systemization can give you more time and increase the value of your service in the eyes of your clients – making your business scalable and more profitable.

In this article, we look at how you can streamline the client journey, whilst maintaining strong human connection and providing added value. 

Analyze and simplify your client journey

The first step to successful systemization is to take a look at your client journey and identify opportunities to delight your clients. In the digital world, leads and clients understand that much of the work of a law practice can be simplified using tech solutions. Often they expect it. They value the work you do for them during your billable hours, not the additional admin. 

When analyzing your client journey, ask the following questions:

  • What pain points do you and your clients experience?
  • Do you gather data from leads in the early stages of contact?
  • How do you follow up on leads?
  • Do you know how clients find you or why they choose your firm?
  • Is it clear when and how clients should pay?
  • Are all your team members clear on the steps?
  • Do you gather feedback and reviews?
  • What would make the client journey more straightforward? 
  • What tech or tools might you need to achieve your goals?

By making the process as client-centric as possible, you can give your clients a valuable and personal service while giving yourself more time to focus on legal work. 

Provide an excellent experience from the first contact

Your potential clients have more choice and access to information than ever before so making a good first impression is key.  According to research from Clio, 35% of calls to law firms go unanswered. When a law firm doesn’t answer a call from a potential client, they will likely call a competitor.

Similarly, calls left to go to voicemail can often go unnoticed among the busy day-to-day practice of the firm.In fact, 42% of the time, law firms take three or more days to reply to a voicemail or website form fill from a prospective client. First contact should be a priority area for systemization. The legal sector is competitive and you need to make the most of every lead that comes your way. 

While many small firms don’t have the time or resources to ensure every call, web chat or website enquiry is taken care of, there are solutions that can help. Expert legal answering services such as LEX Reception, direct callers or web enquiries to a friendly and empathetic specialist. Rather than taking the risk of letting a valuable client call go to voicemail, you can connect them with a real person any time your team is unavailable. LEX is people-powered – with a real person at the end of every call. Scripts are tailored to your firm and LEX team members can pre-screen callers, qualify leads and manage intake on your behalf. 

A 24/7 service can also be beneficial for your prospects and clients. No matter what area of practice you are in, clients have a great deal of uncertainty when they contact a lawyer. They want to be reassured. Having a friendly, responsive and knowledgeable voice at the other end of the phone or to answer questions via web chat lets clients know that they are in the right place.

Automate and integrate your follow-up and client intake

Clients often struggle to understand what ‘good service’ looks like from a law firm. Many of your prospects have never instructed a lawyer before. Regular and timely communication can build trust and reinforce their decision that you are the right firm for them. 

Automating your follow-up and client intake workflow can help you to stay on track with client communications and give you more time to grow your business. For example, 54% of legal professionals said that their firm captures more leads with a pre-consultation client intake form. Every LEX Reception account includes Setmore – scheduling software with automated online booking, reminders, payments, and more. During the process of booking an appointment, you can provide a client intake form that not only screens leads for suitability, but also gathers essential client information. Setmore integrates with your existing CRM allowing you to sync your contact data without the need for manual input.

Once new clients have been qualified by the LEX reception team, they will receive an automated confirmation of their consultation booking, and an intake form or contract depending on your specific client journey.  You can even include a Zoom or Teleport link for virtual consultations. Clients will also receive automated text or email reminders, saving you from no-shows and giving clients confidence that their appointment matters to your firm.

This streamlined workflow demonstrates how systemisation benefits your firm but also provides more touchpoints to show your clients your service is designed with their needs in mind.

Provide flexibility and reliability

Reliability and flexibility are at the heart of putting clients first. Investing in tools, systems and processes that reflect these values can allow you to provide a more human service working with clients whenever and however works best for them. 

You can’t work 24/7, but clients have questions and want answers at all hours of the day. They want to know they can rely on you to be there for them when they need you most. With a 24/7 service like LEX Reception, you can provide access to knowledgeable legal call specialists and allow your clients to book appointments at a time that suits them. 

It is also important to consider how much time and headspace systemising your practice can give you. Practising as an attorney requires a great deal of emotional resilience. You cannot provide the best service for your clients without adequate time to rest and recharge. Systemising elements of your practice will not only give you a better business, but it can also make you a better lawyer. Give yourself more time to do what you do best. 

Reduce friction during the payment process

When choosing and working with a lawyer, the cost is often a significant factor and concern for clients. However, it is possible to make the payment process an added benefit of working with your firm over your competitors.

According to research,  65% of consumers prefer to pay through electronic payments. By providing your clients with a digital payment service, you can remove some of the friction and uncertainty around fees and payments. By using a trusted service like LawPay, you can give clients the option to pay in a secure way that suits them and ensures ABA and IOLTA-compliant payments. You can even connect LawPay with your Setmore account, allowing clients to book and pay at the same time or to send automated payment reminders.

Start systemising the human way 

LEX Reception covers lawyers’ calls while they focus on billable hours and when they need time away from work. By setting up an intake system and implementing tech tools, you can automate your office management without losing the human touch. 

If you are ready to take the next step towards systemisation, try LEX Reception with a $250 discount. Use this link or contact Manni Sandoval on +1 877 505 3134.