Clio’s Legal Trends Report is an invaluable tool, not only for lawyers but for every type of professional that interacts and works with the legal industry. If you need any insight into customer service, regardless of your industry, download the report for free. What you learn will surprise you.
CX Transcends Industry
You are no longer competing against other people in your industry; you’re competing with every customer experience your client has ever had. The standards for customer service are higher than they’ve ever been in every industry, and customers know it. “33% of Americans say they’ll consider switching companies after just a single instance of poor service,” reports Help Scout.
However, many lawyers are failing to recognize this changing landscape. Only 34% of lawyers surveyed said that growing a client base is important.
This is a huge mistake, in any industry. If you aren’t focusing on expanding your practice, you’re going to see long-term declines in profit. Your consumers need to come first.
You’re Wasting Billable Hours
Most lawyers (75%) also report working outside of regular business hours often or always, and 39% say this negatively affects their personal life.
This is simply unsustainable! Lawyers need to make the most of their billable hours, but instead are wasting these hours on administrative tasks like scheduling appointments and answering the phone. This extra time adds up: the report says that lawyers are adding 3.5 weeks per year to their workload due to overwork and time mismanagement.
What can be done to fix this? Can lawyers ignore the phone calls and rely on their customers to figure out scheduling with self-service portals?
Take the Call or Take the Fall
The answer to wasting billable hours is clearly NOT ignoring your phone calls! You can’t sacrifice customer service for more time, because that approach means pretty soon you won’t have any more customers at all.
Customers are in a vulnerable position when they’re seeking legal help. They’re dealing with their financial security, pursuing justice, and in some cases, their future or the future of a loved one. Lawyers need to provide that security by being available 24/7.
“If you don’t have an assistant that answers your phone 24/7, I guarantee you are losing potential clients,” says a criminal defence attorney in Maryland. (Read the Nexa legal case study here.)
Make a Face to Face Connection
You may think that giving your clients options to automate the legal process is the best way to go. While having options is smart, your clients overwhelming want to meet in person. This makes sense! They are dealing with sensitive matters, that could cost them money, time, and their freedom. Hiring a lawyer is also a big investment, so it makes sense that clients would want to make sure you’re the right fit. Unfortunately, only 2% of lawyers agreed with clients that meeting face to face was important. If you want to stand out from your competition, you need to make meeting your clients a priority. Sure, you’re busy, but a very clear majority needs attentiveness from their legal counsel. You need to find the time for your
It’s Time to Outsource
So, what can you, as a small law firm, do to keep your clients? The customer experience is more important than ever, but lawyers like you are wasting billable hours on administrative tasks and ignoring what your clients really need.
It’s time to outsource.
Hiring a virtual receptionist will transform your practice. Virtual receptionist services like Nexa Receptionists can schedule appointments, work with your intake system, and are available 24/7/365. Our virtual receptionists are trained in industry-specific, verticalized teams so your leads and current clients are in the best hands possible.
Outsourcing leaves time for you to meet face to face and prioritize people over time-consuming administrative tasks.
For information on the benefits of outsourcing for your small law firm, read here.
Regardless of your industry, you can learn something from the Legal Trends Report. When there’s clear feedback available, it’s a good idea to listen. Differentiate yourself from the competition and enjoy the benefits.