The past few years have provided extra challenges for businesses. Navigating Brexit, the COVID-19 pandemic and two general elections have created extra uncertainty for business leaders looking to expand and secure company longevity.
In the legal sector, a skills shortage has resulted in the addition of recruitment challenges to this list. Many law firms are reviewing their positioning, processes and culture to ensure that they are not only appealing to great talent for any vacancies, but also competing in their field and delivering the best service to their clients.
Prioritising activity that will build and sustain businesses for the long term is vital. Here are three pointers for legal business leaders to remember in order to grow their law firms to last.
1. Increase your law firm’s visibility
You might be the best law firm in your region, but unless prospective clients know about you, this is meaningless. Increasing your visibility will give you greater chances to secure new business.
Improved search engine optimisation (SEO) helps your site rank higher on the likes of Google and Bing, and comes as a result of changes to your website’s content, structure, keywords and phrases. Allocating a budget for pay per click (PPC) adverts on search engines such as Google Ads will position you in front of more prospective clients when someone clicks on the advert to visit your website.
In addition to this, listing your business information on directory sites such as lawconnect.co.uk means that prospective clients looking for the right law firm for their needs can find you. By ensuring your details are featured and accurate, you can be considered for their business.
Raising your profile often has a snowball effect, so the more you do to increase visibility through listings and networking, the more clients you will attract, and the easier this becomes.
2. Optimise your time
The old adage “time is money” has never been truer than in the legal profession. When lawyers spend their days chasing up overdue invoices, tracking each billable unit and scheduling client meetings, their time is spent on administration rather than chargeable work. This is considerably less profitable and can demotivate valued and talented professionals.
Investing in good practice management software enables simpler tasks like this to be automated, freeing up the lawyers to practice. Automatic timers can track billable minutes, and software can instantly generate invoices. Good practice management software has the capability to manage your staff schedules too, so you can speed up planning by knowing your firm’s availability.
By optimising your time and introducing efficient working practices that can be passed on to new staff, you can become a more profitable firm and create a culture of working smarter.
3. Invest in secure collaboration tools
Technology has revolutionised our private lives, which means prospective customers have a level of expectation from law firms when it comes to technology. By making processes and collaboration with your law firm as seamless and accessible as possible, you are working to keep your clients satisfied.
The right technology available from leading practice management providers enables lawyers to securely collaborate with clients on matters from start to finish. This includes uploading, viewing, commenting on, and sharing large confidential items from any location, reliable version control with live updates, and the ability to sign time critical documents from any device.
By investing in secure collaboration tools, you’re providing clients with confidence and convenience, helping to ensure their overall experience with your law firm is positive. Through recommendations, good experiences like this become free marketing to help you grow your business, and when these are in the form of online reviews, these statements will speak for themselves for years to come.
To learn more about how the right tools can help you grow your law firm, please visit www.leap.co.uk.
Gareth Walker is CEO, LEAP UK.