Relationship Management: Automating The Law Firm Client Intake Process
Managing your client intake properly can help your firm in a variety of ways. Client intake often comes down to a simple sheet of paper that gets passed around the office indiscriminately. This is where new leads, client information, and details can sometimes get lost before the casework even begins.
Part of working towards a greater goal of converting and running a paperless law firm is working with an organized, automated intake system that helps get your new client off to the right start. Ultimately, this helps reduce errors and omissions, but it also helps drive revenue by converting leads faster and more efficiently which drives your bottom line results. So, what does automating the process typically look like?
Manage Your Leads
Traditionally, this is where many firms struggle. Without a dedicated sales professional or team, leads can often get lost in the shuffle. You need a system in place where everyone gets handled promptly and professionally and automation can help. Imagine a system where someone fills out a simple form on your website with their basic information and that data gets populated immediately in your CRM. From there, a contact record is created, identified as a new lead, and a task is created for someone to follow up promptly with that person. This type of semi-automated follow up can lead to a big increase in the conversion percentage of your business leads.
Customize Your Approach
Intake procedures can vary widely by type of case. A wealth of different data can be required in order to accurately evaluate the case and make sure it’s a fit for your firm. Pre-screening can be greatly facilitated by automating the process with a practice management system. Setting up a pre-determined set of forms and workflows for each type of matter you handle will help speed up the process. You’ll also avoid any duplicate entry and be able to utilize the data immediately in your system. See: Start Your Firm On The Path To Automating The Intake Process
Automatically Create The New Client Record
You’ve pre-screened the new case and it’s a fit. As your new client enters the lobby for their initial visit, traditionally, they’d be met with a clipboard and some papers. Picture handing that person an iPad, which houses your family law intake forms instead. Now imagine their data automatically creating a new client record and generating a corresponding matter inside your CRM. It’s faster and simpler than organizing all those pages and creating yet another folder addition to the filing cabinet.
Generate Needed Documents
After the client is accepted into the practice and their intake data is captured, you might need to generate a fee agreement or a welcome letter quickly and efficiently. Typically, that means having someone sit down and physically create those documents, working from a stack of papers. Another advantage of automation is document assembly functionality. Automating means your documents can now be created almost instantly for you, drawing from pre-defined custom fields like birth date, social security number or ticket number.
Putting It All Together
Proper relationship management can help set your firm apart, as well as improve your bottom line. Your relationship begins the first time someone submits their information to you online, over the phone, email, or in person. Having the ability to centralize and access all of their relevant case information in one system starting with automated helps firms to process more leads effectively, make faster decisions, nurture relationships, and ultimately, grow their practice.