To scale your law firm, you may need to implement various business practices. Treating your law firm like a business venture will allow you to put different policies and procedures into place that will grow your firm to eight figures in predictable yearly revenue. Read on to learn more about service standards and why you need to implement them now.
What are service standards?
Put very plainly, a service standard defines what a client can expect from your firm and how your team will handle that experience. The basic criterion for a law firm requires you to look at a client’s case and do your best to get them what they deserve.
While all you technically have to do is take a look at a client’s case, you can go a step further and ascribe goals for your client’s experience. Service standards go hand in hand with the client’s journey and increase satisfaction.
What are some examples?
Different businesses have different standards, but for law firms, you’ll need to look at timeliness, honesty, availability, friendliness, efficiency, and accuracy. We’ll look at each of these qualities, along with more specific examples.
Timeliness can refer to a few different points in the client journey, but let’s look at it through the lens of timely communication. For your intake team, you could have them pick up the phone within three rings, or for your attorneys, have them follow up with the client every week.
It is always better to be honest than to sugarcoat the hard truths in law. You and your clients will appreciate this change of pace. To increase honesty, you could implement surveys and polls throughout the process. You’ll also create more opportunities for honesty by putting some disclaimers on your website.
Hiring a lawyer is expensive – and clients want to make sure that they’ve made a wise investment. Being available to your clients will show that they made the right decision by trusting you. You could show availability by requiring your team to respond to voicemails and emails within an hour.
Clients will appreciate being treated kindly by your team. Ask your team to treat every client like a family member or greet every client by their first name. Implementing this type of friendliness will have your clients walking away feeling cared for by your firm.
Working efficiently is key to scaling your firm – not just because it is suitable for the client but also because it saves you money down the line. Work smarter, not harder. Examples of this could include time limits or more communication.
No matter how well you treat your clients, they will walk away disappointed if their case is full of mistakes. To improve your firm’s accuracy, you could put a rewards system in place or increase training to prevent errors.
How to Implement
There are a few different ways that you can implement some other standards. Most importantly, you should look at pinch points in the movement between departments and how you can improve those points.
To implement, you’ll also need to set a specific framework for your team members to follow. Frame all service standards in a “do this” manner, as opposed to containing lots of words like “avoid” or “don’t.”
You and your leadership team should work together to create a plan that implements strong service standards – and then develop various follow-ups to guarantee that those standards are being followed.
Learn from Experts
One of the best ways to learn about service standards and how to implement them is to learn from experts who have accomplished what they’re talking about. Getting new ideas will lead to creative solutions for your law firm.
At 8 Figure Firm, we believe in the value of service standards and learning from others. To begin the process of bettering your standards, check out our ONE.Client Journey, a way to design how your client interacts with your firm. Our experts will tailor your standards to you and your firm and help you implement the journey.
We will help you turn your law firm into a law business.