By Legal Futures Associate CTS
With inflation at a 40-year high, the UK legal sector has found itself facing an unfamiliar challenge.
Skyrocketing rates, paired with slowing growth and rising salaries means that law firms must find ways to increase their profitability and longevity to keep themselves recession-proof and competitive during these current bouts of high inflation.
So, what steps can you take to protect your conveyancing business?
Adopt workflow automation software
The importance of legal admin work to the running of a successful law firms is undeniable. However, it is also something that can be complex and time-consuming, detracting office managers, secretaries, and admin staff from building the firm, and fee-earners from billable work.
According to McKinsey, automation can free up as much as 23% of fee earners’ billable hours by 2025. Reducing manual processes by introducing automation of client intake, document assembly, client communications, knowledge management and more, the legal sector can save both money and time, as well as providing employees with a more manageable and enjoyable work experience.
Retain talent with a user-centric IT approach
With the growing number of complex systems being implemented, users are looking for ways to simplify their daily work lives, meaning some technologies are being abandoned in favour of easier (yet not always appropriate) ways of achieving the same outcomes.
Many vendors offer multi-year contracts for their services, meaning that you may be unable to switch to another provider before your contract end date without expense. If leaving your contract in favour of another product isn’t viable, you may end up paying ongoing costs for a service that you don’t use or no longer want.
Taking a user-centric approach will allow you to make informed decisions about technology investment, limiting the possibility that your users will reject the product, resulting in financial loss.
Effectively manage billing processes
For conveyancing firms, effectively managing cash flow is key to boosting profitability. While acquiring new clients is important, taking control of cash-related administrative tasks such as expense tracking and invoicing can have a significant impact on a firm’s profits.
According to the Aderant Business of Law and Legal Technology Survey, nearly half of surveyed law firms reported spending too much time on pre-bills and invoicing. Conveyancing firms can benefit from using legal billing software, which automates these tasks, enabling the generation of invoices for clients, tracking of individual clients and cases for more accurate billing, and recording of financial details.
By streamlining cash flow management through legal billing software, conveyancing firms can save time and reduce errors, resulting in greater profitability.
Leverage your data to identify opportunities
Business Intelligence (BI) technology can be a powerful tool for increasing law firm profitability. By leveraging data to make observations and predictions, law firms can gain valuable insights into their operations and make more informed decisions.
For example, with BI, conveyancers can track the time it takes to complete each transaction, from start to finish. By analysing this data, firms can identify bottlenecks in their processes and optimise their workflows to reduce transaction times, enabling them to make the most of available opportunities and take on more cases.
Leveraging BI technology, especially when integrated with practice management software, can provide law firms with a comprehensive set of tools for boosting profitability and staying competitive in an ever-changing legal landscape.
Effectively onboard new clients
Implementing client onboarding software can improve the profitability of conveyancing firms by reducing costs and increasing revenue.
By automating the onboarding process, firms can save significant amounts of time and resources, allowing them to focus on billable work and generate more revenue. Additionally, the automation of data collection and storage can reduce the risk of errors, resulting in fewer disputes and legal liabilities. By reducing the time and resources spent on manual data entry and reducing the risk of errors, firms can improve their operational efficiency and profitability.
Moreover, the improved customer experience resulting from a streamlined onboarding process can lead to more satisfied customers and increased business. Overall, client onboarding software can help conveyancing firms to improve their profitability by reducing costs, increasing revenue, and improving customer satisfaction.
Nurture your client base
Law firm success is largely dependent on its relationship with its clients. It is vital that, while you seek out new opportunities, you must nurture your relationships with your existing client base.
Client portals can be a great addition to your technology landscape as they can enable you offer your clients a convenient, simple, and seamless service that can help make legal processes much easier to handle. From heightened levels of security, to simplified collaboration to an overall improved client experience, it is no surprise that many law firms are looking to adopt more client-facing technologies to improve client relationships, as well as streamline operations.
Embracing legal tech can play a crucial role in increasing profitability and surviving economic downturns. Adopting workflow automation software, legal billing software, and client onboarding software can streamline administrative tasks, save time and money, and ensure accurate billing. Additionally, retaining talented staff with a user-centric IT approach and nurturing client relationships can also help maintain a strong bottom line.
By implementing these measures, firms can mitigate financial risks, stay competitive, and thrive even in uncertain economic times.