find the latest legal job
Corporate/Commercial Lawyers (2-5 years PAE)
Category: Corporate and Commercial Law | Location: Adelaide SA 5000
· Specialist commercial law firm · Long-term career progression
View details
Graduate Lawyer / Up to 1.5 yr PAE Lawyer
Category: Personal Injury Law | Location: Brisbane CBD & Inner Suburbs Brisbane QLD
· Mentoring Opportunity in Regional QLD · Personal Injury Law
View details
Corporate and Commercial Partner
Category: Corporate and Commercial Law | Location: Adelaide SA 5000
· Full time · Join a leading Adelaide commercial law firm
View details
In-house Legal Counsel & Commercial Lawyers
Category: Corporate and Commercial Law | Location: All Sydney NSW
· Providing lawyers with flexibility and control over when they work, how they work and who they work for.
View details
In-house Legal Counsel & Commercial Lawyers
Category: Corporate and Commercial Law | Location: All Melbourne VIC
· Providing lawyers with flexibility and control over when they work, how they work and who they work for.
View details
Cultivating client happiness in law

Cultivating client happiness in law

Client happiness governs success in all businesses, and law firms are no exception, writes Meda Royall.

The legal profession is not free of the rules that govern enterprise and, like other professions, is bound by a set of scrutinising tendencies set forth by the clients and consumers that fuel the world of business. Client satisfaction is one of these governing phenomena, and placing an emphasis on upholding the integrity of client satisfaction is an initiative that needs to be held in the highest of regards within any business.

Maintaining a healthy and strong client-business relationship is a crucial aspect to any provider of legal services initiative repertoire, and neglecting to realise this undeniable fact is a slip-up that simply cannot be afforded to occur. Unhappy clients can mean an untimely demise is imminent for practitioners who allow this sort of thing to occur, which places a stern burden of client satisfaction on the profession as a whole. Leaving this kind of occurrence untethered and unwavered is an all too common practice in the legal field, and is a leading cause in the failing of firms and the development of rising resentment among the consumers of legal services.

The incentives for focusing on client satisfaction

A multitude of comprehensive and up-to-date studies and research compilations prove that emphasising client happiness translates into tangible results for legal practitioners of all kinds. One such American study conducted by BTI Consulting Group in Boston indicates that clients who deem a firm to be "superior" to other firms, do so with regards to a few unique attributes that these noteworthy entities possess. These can include anything from a streamlined client experience, to a favourable cost according to the qualities imparted by the service over any other competitor’s comparable services.

These superior labelled firms tend to show greater success and greater productivity within their operations, and typically possess a set of defining attributes that may collectively owe to this notable success. These resulting attributes include things like 33 per cent higher profits than non "superior" competitors, and almost 36 per cent higher overall growth rates than their constituencies. These firms also usually obtain double the amount of fees from single clients, which coupled with the 33.1 per cent higher client retention rates, owes to their impressive success.

How do you know you’re on the right track?

There are many methods that exist for firms and solo practitioners to gauge the overall satisfaction of their clients, and many of the most successful service providers use multiple methods in conjunction for a complete analysis of satisfaction levels.

One of the most popular ways of deciphering the happiness of clientele, is the practice of organising in-person interviews. These interviews give a platform for the client to shed light on their experience, and gives the professional the chance to understand any gripes that the client may have. The downside to this practice revolves around the imperfection of an in-person review, where the client may be unwilling to truly express their feelings. Firms and lawyers may utilise this method specifically for complex relationships that can benefit the most from face-to-face interactions.

Other methods that may be used include things like telephone interviews and online surveys, where the hindrances of honesty don’t apply in the same way they do for in-person interviews. This notion is especially true for online surveys, which has an added bonus of convenience added to the mix – making it somewhat of a go-to tool for client satisfaction analyses.

The stark realities of client dissatisfaction makes upholding a positive client experience extremely imperative for any practitioner, and this notion is even more applicable in the current volatile environment that surrounds the legal profession. It’s now more than ever the time for firms and individual lawyers alike to focus their attention on client happiness – for without such a focus, the repercussions may prove fatal.

Meda Royall is the founder and CEO of Your Law Firm. 


Like this story? Read more:

QLS condemns actions of disgraced lawyer as ‘stain on the profession’

NSW proposes big justice reforms to target risk of reoffending

The legal budget breakdown 2017

Cultivating client happiness in law
lawyersweekly logo
Promoted content
Recommended by Spike Native Network
more from lawyers weekly
Scales of Justice
Dec 15 2017
Timing ‘critical’ in unusual contempt of court ruling
A recent case could have interesting implications for contempt of court rulings, according to a Ferr...
Dec 14 2017
International arbitration and business culture
Promoted by Maxwell Chambers. This article discusses the impact of international arbitration on t...
Papua New Guinea flag
Dec 14 2017
World-first mining case launched in PNG
Citizens of Papua New Guinea have launched landmark legal proceedings against the country’s govern...
APPOINTMENTS
Allens managing partner Richard Spurio, image courtesy Allens' website
Jun 21 2017
Promo season at Allens
A group of lawyers at Allens have received promotions across its PNG and Australian offices. ...
May 11 2017
Partner exits for in-house role
A Victorian lawyer has left the partnership of a national firm to start a new gig with state governm...
Esteban Gomez
May 11 2017
National firm recruits ‘major asset’
A national law firm has announced it has appointed a new corporate partner who brings over 15 years'...
opinion
Nicole Rich
May 16 2017
Access to justice for young transgender Australians
Reform is looming for the process that young transgender Australians and their families must current...
Geoff Roberson
May 11 2017
The lighter side of the law: when law and comedy collide
On the face of it, there doesn’t seem to be much that is amusing about the law, writes Geoff Rober...
Help
May 10 2017
Advocate’s immunity – without fear or without favour but not both
On 29 March 2017, the High Court handed down its decision in David Kendirjian v Eugene Lepore & ...