There has been much debate recently about the escalating disruptions to the legal industry, and whether or not firms need to up-their-game to meet these new challenges. Regulatory changes, the emergence of ‘law tech,’ and supply and demand pressures are making some lawyers question their longevity. In contrast, many other law firm bosses believe that these disruptions are temporary glitches, and new tools will forever pale in comparison to their skills and expertise.
In truth, disruption from government regulation and new technologies only form part of the story. In the main, industry disruption is primarily driven by consumers. You do not have to look very far to see how automated tools and cloud-based services have transformed both the banking and finance industries. Many of us use online tools every day to help us complete essential tasks, like managing our money. Consumers are starting to demand that law firms mirror this level of convenience, adopting a similar online-centric approach in their practices. Therefore, embracing the strategic potential of cloud-based technology should be a priority for law firms large and small. This post will run through four client pain points that your firm can solve with the right technology.
Client Pain Point #1: “Constantly Chasing Lawyers For Updates”
In a survey we conducted earlier this year, 87% of respondents ranked speed and ease of communication with their solicitor as being of the utmost priority. In dealing with life-altering circumstances, having clear lines of communication with your lawyer can be almost as important as winning your case. No one, not clients or fee-earning staff, wishes to be caught up in endless games of phone tag. From a legal professional’s perspective, telephone conversations take time to plan, as documentation needs to be gathered and reviewed beforehand. Therefore, missing a phone appointment, or fencing off clients chasing constant updates, places undue pressure on lawyers. The Link App presents an easy-to-use communication platform that connects clients and law firms instantly.
You can share real-time updates, including confidential documents, and send push notifications directly to your client’s iPhone, Android, or the web-based app. However, should the client need to get in touch, The Link App also offers a ‘Call Back Request’ feature that even works when the user is offline. These features enable lawyers to plan their call back schedules on-the-move, as well as provide clients with updates and information in advance, or instead of, a callback.
Client Pain Point #2: “Waiting For Documents In The Post”
Even in a straightforward legal transaction, such as purchasing a property, getting all of the necessary surveys and contracts in order takes weeks, if not months, too if you rely on post. In the fast-paced modern world, clients are eager to use secure online methods to file and send legal forms and documentation instantly. With The Link App’s real-time file sharing features, clients can rest assured that they are doing all they can to get the most time-efficient service for their money. The app even allows clients to fill in forms from their mobile and sign off on tasks with their E-Signature. E-Signature tools are a huge plus point for speeding-up legal proceedings. They also provide a safe method for verifying identification. In fact, a study by Forrester found that the introduction of e-signature verification increased a businesses’ productivity by 87%. In effect, the report found that this speedier I.D verification method saved one enterprise over 22,000 staff hours annually.
Client Pain Point #3: “Security Of Communications, In Particular, Email”
Email is a favoured communication tool amongst legal professionals; however, its convenience also comes with certain pitfalls. With growing awareness of cybersecurity, clients need to be reassured that their sensitive communications are protected from prying eyes and online attacks. The Link App offers clients this peace of mind with its 256-bit SSL encryption features, keeping documents private. It can also process bill payments securely from both the mobile and desktop app. The security of email communications can also be compromised if an important message is missed or directed to a spam folder. 50% of our survey’s respondents revealed that misdirected emails happened to them occasionally, if not often. However, even if an email falls into the correct folder, there is no guarantee that the recipient will acknowledge the contents in a timely manner. With The Link App, all communications between clients and lawyers are logged in a chronological feed, helping both parties organise their discussions automatically. This simple feature can save hours of time and headaches all-round.
Client Pain Point #4: “Transparency And Value For Money”
Transparency in the legal profession is an age-old client pain point, as much of the grunt work happens behind the scenes. With complex issues at hand and endless lists of legal jargon to sift through, many clients have a hard time understanding where their legal fees are being spent. On top of this, customers are starting to drift towards comprehensive online services that allow them to do things like writing a Will, without the need to hire a solicitor. In the years to come, law firms will need to adapt their pricing plans to remain competitive in this unpredictable industry. In a sense, they will need to make their professional knowledge and input a high-quality commodity worth paying for in itself. To facilitate this new mindset, law practices will need an easy way to manage their long-term client relationships. They will need to adapt in ways that keep clients satisfied and abreast of the latest law tech developments, to assure their customers’ business in the future. The Link App integrates with your existing Matter Management and Case Management systems. Our team can also provide bespoke integration solutions to ensure that your firm stays up-to-date with technological advances and updates. Additionally, part of building long-term trust also comes with updating clients on the latest legislative goings-on, wherever relevant. With the integrated messaging service, you can send out a template or customised updates to past and present clients, with minimal fuss.
Automated tools, like The Link App, provide a secure and easy-to-use platform that makes account management and communication pain-free. In the decades ahead, more and more of the legal services industry will become reliant on technology and digital records to keep their practices running efficiently. As a profitable law firm, regardless of your size and specialisms, you have to make sure you stay ahead of the curve by updating your communications systems with your client’s needs in mind.
Originally published 25 / May / 2018