User experience has become a mantra across industries, from professional services to web design. With so much competition in the market and so many options for consumers to navigate, standing out in terms of your client experience is a surefire way to get you noticed. For law firms, being able to compete on client experience is becoming increasingly important, especially as more legal work is being done by AI and automation.
With that in mind, below are some client experience considerations to keep in mind that can have an outsized impact on your legal practice.
Your Intake Process
Your intake process refers to the various methods and procedures you have in place for getting new clients set up in your system and ready to start serving. Having a good client intake form is key in this respect. This form dictates what information you capture from clients, and your internal processes determine what you do with it.
From scheduling meetings to sending out, signing and receiving documents, how to onboard and set up your clients is a reflection of your firm’s efficiency and attention to client needs. If you can streamline your intake process and make it as quick and convenient for clients as possible, you have already established yourself as a firm that takes client experience seriously.
How you also communicate factors heavily into how a client perceives their experience. Too much communication, automated or otherwise, can be seen as overbearing. Too little can make the firm appear neglectful. This is where automation can also greatly improve how you communicate with your clients.
Through your CRM, you can schedule meetings, remind clients of important dates coming up with respect to filing and contracts, let them know when payments are due and keep them abreast of developments within the firm.
How Informative You Are
Client experience also relates to how informed by and confident in the firm your clients feel. One of the best ways to do this is to add clients to an email list as part of your intake process so that you can send them important niche and industry-related information, commentary and insight.
Your firm’s blog is where you showcase your expertise and legal opinions to the world and to prospective clients. Once a new piece has been published–on a recent legislative change, on a trending topic, etcetera–let your clients know via your email list.
A client wants to feel like their lawyer is on top of industry trends and changes, stays ahead of the curve and is ready to react decisively in and when required.
People have always chosen and, more importantly, chosen to stay with their lawyer or law firm because of how they are treated. Of course, your reputation and success rate matter, but as a greater amount of legal work is done via automation and AI, including casework, case prep, and even some adjudications, how you make your clients feel with your attentiveness and processes matters even more.
Keep the above considerations in mind, and don’t let yourself be outcompeted on client experience.