Why all Law Firms Need CRM - xRM4Legal

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The goal of most law firms is to make a profit by Growing, Protecting and Sustaining clients (G-P-S). The truth is … that most law firms do a poor job of marketing, managing clients and growing business development.

So why do you need a legal CRM system? Because the problem is… you don’t know which clients you will lose, how many you have called on, or what the rest of your firm is doing that will affect your success or failure. Just knowing how many calls to clients or prospective clients have been made is often done by asking them!

For years, law firms relied on lawyers to maintain good relationships with clients. They kept their own client records, followed up on new opportunities and grew the client base and service reputation. But when lawyers change firms, or the partners don’t know what the lawyers have promised (and vice-versa), this gets many firms in trouble.

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Why all Law Firms Need CRM - xRM4Legal

  1. 1. Client RelationshipsWhy All Law Firms Need ClientRelationship Management (CRM)White PaperDate: September 2011
  2. 2. AcknowledgementsPrepared for the USA Law Firm Webinar, this document was developed with support fromseminar hosts and in direct collaboration with the following:xRM4Legal.com ContributorsRocky Sharma, Senior CRM/xRM ConsultantFeedbackTo send comments or suggestions about this document, please click the following link:http://xRM4Legal.com/content/contacts Powered by Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011, xRM4Legal is more than just marketing and Client Relationship Management (CRM). As a new and innovative marketing and business development solution for law firms and other professional services organizations, xRM4Legal offers the most complete set of solutions for marketing, business development and client care. Our comprehensive platform includes Web, E-mail communications, relationship and contact management, social CRM, analytics and SharePoint solutions. xRM4Legal is backed by a national and international team of legal industry specialists providing design, consulting, technology, implementation, hosting, training and ongoing support services. www.xRM4Legal.com Legal Notice This document is provided “as-is”. Information and views expressed in this document, including URL and other Internet Web site references, may change without notice. Some examples depicted herein are provided for illustration only. This document does not provide you with any legal rights to any intellectual property in any product. You may copy and use this document for your internal, reference purposes. © 2011 Asia Pacific Dynamics Corporation. All rights reserved.2WHY ALL LAW FIRMS NEED CRM SEPTEMBER 2011
  3. 3. Table of ContentsPreface...................................................................................................................4 About the Author ....................................................................................... 4Grow, Protect, Sustain .............................................................................................6Determining Your CRM Needs ....................................................................................7Why Should CRM Be a Priority? .................................................................................8Making CRM Work in Your Firm..................................................................................9 Searching for clients, exploring relationships ................................................. 9 Creating contact records, connections and lists ............................................ 11 Reviewing activities, creating and sharing opportunities ................................ 16 Creating a targeted mailing/event list ......................................................... 19Software Might Not Help ......................................................................................... 22 Presenting the business benefits ................................................................ 22Calculating ROI ..................................................................................................... 24Getting Started ..................................................................................................... 25How We Can Help .................................................................................................. 26 3SEPTEMBER 2011 WHY ALL LAW FIRMS NEED CRM
  4. 4. PrefaceAbout the Author David Blumentals has 20 years‟ experience in IT and Professional Services. With a background in economics, finance and insurance David moved into marketing and business development in 1989. Since 1997, David has focused on the successful delivery of Client Relationship Management (CRM) systems, often integrating with Practice, Financial and Document Management Systems.After working with Epicor‟s Clientele CRM in the late 1990‟s and developing finance and CRMsoftware systems in the early 2000‟s David started working with Microsoft CRM 1.2 in 2004and Microsoft Dynamics AX in 2007. David continues to work today with Microsoft DynamicsCRM 2011 in both on-premise and hosted, cloud computing deployments.David has held several Director level positions with leading Australian IT groups. A majorproject was development of the BankNET financial management system and 2003 partnershipwith the Australian Taxation Office on their Electronic Commerce Initiative to test the processof electronic lodgement of the Business Activity Statement from a „Web environment‟.In May 2008 founded Client Profiles Asia Pacific, an offshoot of Client Profiles Inc, based inAtlanta Georgia. As a Microsoft ISV Partner of the Year and Professional Services Partner ofthe Year in 2009 and 2010, Client Profiles established an impressive client base acrossAustralia-New Zealand including six of the top thirty law firms.More recently, David has established Asia Pacific Dynamics Corporation as a support vehiclefor both clients and Client Profiles implementation partners globally. He is also a director ofVARCentral, a leading supplier of hosted, eCommerce software solutions to IT Resellers acrossAustralia and New Zealand, www.VARCentral.com.auDavid can be contacted at DBlumentals@xRM4Legal.com or +61 409 245 354.Sydney – Sydney Wharf 9, 56 Pirrama Road, Pyrmont NSW 2009 AustraliaLondon – 40 Bank Street, Canary Wharf, London E14 5NR UKNew York – 1330 Avenue of the Americas, New York City NY10019 USAFor North America please call: +1 (212) 653 0379For Asia Pacific please call: +61 2 9571 48534WHY ALL LAW FIRMS NEED CRM SEPTEMBER 2011
  5. 5. “CRM turns frogs into princes.”Anonymous 5SEPTEMBER 2011 WHY ALL LAW FIRMS NEED CRM
  6. 6. Grow, Protect, SustainWe work with a lot of law firms around the world as they consider the implementation of CRMsolutions, and many of them don‟t have a firm grip on what CRM is, why they need it and whatresults it can bring to them. They aren‟t sure what they should spend on a CRM solution andthey ask, "How do I justify this system?“Many firms have also put their CRM projects on hold as a result of other IT projects, theeconomy, or because they think what they have now is OK. What priority should you give toCRM? Hopefully we can help with what you need to know and if there is a fit in your firm.The goal of most law firms is to make a profit by Growing, Protecting and Sustaining clients(G-P-S). The truth is … that most law firms do a poor job of marketing, managing clients andgrowing business development.So why do you need a legal CRM system? Because the problem is… you don‟t know whichclients you will lose, how many you have called on, or what the rest of your firm is doing thatwill affect your success or failure. Just knowing how many calls to clients or prospective clientshave been made is often done by asking them!For years, law firms relied on lawyers to maintain good relationships with clients. They kepttheir own client records, followed up on new opportunities and grew the client base andservice reputation. But when lawyers change firms, or the partners don‟t know what thelawyers have promised (and vice-versa), this gets many firms in trouble.6WHY ALL LAW FIRMS NEED CRM SEPTEMBER 2011
  7. 7. Determining Your CRM NeedsTo work out a firm‟s CRM requirements a few simple questions can be asked: How many new client prospect telephone calls do you make each day? Does everyone who communicates with a client know what other practice groups said to them or did for them? Is all client information kept in one place for easy reference? Do you have several databases of information that you need to access for a 360 degree client view? Are you able to manage the top 20% of clients that give you 80% of your revenue and 90% of your profit? 7SEPTEMBER 2011 WHY ALL LAW FIRMS NEED CRM
  8. 8. Why Should CRM Be a Priority?The simple answer here is because it can have such a profound effect on your firm! It greatlyaffects staff satisfaction and turnover, the ability to target and close new business, themanagement of client interactions and profitability, and so on. How much do you think thesefew functions alone can affect your law firm?Sometimes firms lose deals because one hand doesn‟t know what the other was doing. Howmuch would actions like this affect your law firm? How many times does this happen at yourfirm? How do you know? And how do you know how many calls your lawyers make to clients?Or… how much time do the lawyers spend with that "one problem client?" And how could it befixed?Answers to these questions are what justify the need for CRM software! When firms start toprobe, they find that many things are going wrong and being covered up and they‟re costingthe firm a bundle! And don‟t say that your firm has everything working perfectly, because thishappens at every law firm! Do an anonymous survey to the "worker bees" and you will findout.8WHY ALL LAW FIRMS NEED CRM SEPTEMBER 2011
  9. 9. Making CRM Work in Your FirmSearching for clients, exploring relationshipsScenario: You are attending an industry conference or meeting and would like to see whatinformation the firm has on some of the companies or contacts that are attending, theirpositions and if known to anyone else at the firm.Purpose: This scenario aims to demonstrate how to search for contacts, explore existingrelationships and profiles to build up information ahead of meeting a client or prospectiveclient.Steps: Type in the client name “Microsoft”. This will display the following list of head officeand subsidiary records:Clicking on Microsoft Corporation will display the following client record: 9SEPTEMBER 2011 WHY ALL LAW FIRMS NEED CRM
  10. 10. From here we can review information that is tracked and maintained internally like ClientNumber, Business Type, Client Manager/s and so on. We can also review information that istracked and maintained externally to the firm – like that aggregated from relevant executiveand business networks.10WHY ALL LAW FIRMS NEED CRM SEPTEMBER 2011
  11. 11. Other details about the client organization can also be recorded such as Industry andRevenue:We can obtain a quick one page / “taxi pack” report by clicking File and Print Preview.Creating contact records, connections and listsScenario: Having attended a conference or networking event you have collected two businesscards that you would like to add to the firm CRM system. You know there is also a seminar thefirm is hosting next month that you think might be appropriate to invite them to.Purpose: This scenario aims to establish how to check the database to see if the contact isalready known to the firm, add new contacts from business cards, add you as a known contactand add the contacts to a firm event list. 11SEPTEMBER 2011 WHY ALL LAW FIRMS NEED CRM
  12. 12. Steps: Clicking on the associated Contacts list displays those contacts currently known to thefirm who work at Microsoft Corporation:Clicking on the link to Steve Ballmer will display the following contact record:12WHY ALL LAW FIRMS NEED CRM SEPTEMBER 2011
  13. 13. You will notice additional navigation pane options for Education, Employment History,Expenses and Languages. These are examples of additional entities that can be added toxRM4Legal for managing and integrating HR and Experience Databases – for Expertise, MatterLevel Experience, Education, Bar Memberships, Accreditations and Other HR relatedinformation.To create a connection with this contact record click on Connections in the navigation pane.This will display those people in the firm already connected. Some connections areautomatically created such as when a Client Manager is assigned or when a BusinessDeveloper is working on an Opportunity – also when professional staff are recorded on aMatter. These tend to be the critical “Who Knows” relationships.Connection records are used in the Outlook synchronization rules to keep CRM records up-to-date and current between various users that have an interest in that client contact. 13SEPTEMBER 2011 WHY ALL LAW FIRMS NEED CRM
  14. 14. To create a connection just click the Connect button. We can select the role and enter adescription.14WHY ALL LAW FIRMS NEED CRM SEPTEMBER 2011
  15. 15. Clicking on Marketing Lists displays those lists currently associated with Steve:To add Steve to another list click the Add Existing Marketing List button and select the list: 15SEPTEMBER 2011 WHY ALL LAW FIRMS NEED CRM
  16. 16. A full Audit History of changes to the Contact is recorded:Reviewing activities, creating and sharing opportunitiesScenario: After bumping into an old client you found out that good opportunities areemerging in new areas of their business as a result of the recent changes in their GeneralCounsel.Purpose: This scenario aims to establish how to record activities so we can shareopportunities and general activity information on our firm contacts with colleagues as well asaid cross-sell opportunities to others and set reminders so you and your assistant can managemeetings and action points generally.Steps: Clicking on Activities displays those open appointments, letters, phone calls and eventresponses currently recorded:16WHY ALL LAW FIRMS NEED CRM SEPTEMBER 2011
  17. 17. Clicking the Add New Activity button allows us to record the details of the activity: 17SEPTEMBER 2011 WHY ALL LAW FIRMS NEED CRM
  18. 18. From the Activity we can also create a new Opportunity record by clicking the Convert Activityto Opportunity:Client and potential new matter details can be recorded together with revenue forecast,selection criteria/processes, deal and pitch information. Activities, Connections andDocuments can be associated with each Opportunity record.You can share Opportunity details with colleagues by clicking the E-mail a Link button.18WHY ALL LAW FIRMS NEED CRM SEPTEMBER 2011
  19. 19. Creating a targeted mailing/event listScenario: You have written a report with relevance to senior legal counsel at financialinstitutions and want to send it to these clients.Purpose: This scenario aims to establish how to create a targeted mailing/event list throughfiltering contacts and assigning contacts.Steps: Clicking on Marketing Lists displays those marketing/mailing lists currently recorded: 19SEPTEMBER 2011 WHY ALL LAW FIRMS NEED CRM
  20. 20. To create a new Marketing List, click the New button and enter details as below – note that wecan specify either Static or Dynamic list:After saving the record, we can filter and assign Marketing List Members. In this case we willselect only Contacts with a Banking & Finance subscription set to “Subscribed by Client”:20WHY ALL LAW FIRMS NEED CRM SEPTEMBER 2011
  21. 21. Clicking the Find button displays the contact records that match the criteria.With dynamic marketing lists you can rest assured that your special reports will reach the rightset of client contacts. 21SEPTEMBER 2011 WHY ALL LAW FIRMS NEED CRM
  22. 22. Software Might Not HelpA health warning!While some law firms are becoming more tech-savvy about marketing, others do struggle.As a software system designed to promote business development cross-selling in law firms weare asking lawyers to download their contacts into it so that other firm practice areas can takeadvantage of them as well. The problem is that many of the lawyers dont want to divulgecontacts."Its the fear of sharing,"says one law firm business development manager."Like a journalist having to reveal their sources to another journalist. For lawyers [a reluctanceto share client contacts is] fundamentally the most difficult thing for the law firm toovercome.""Its a fight to get [lawyers] to download into the CRM program,"adds the chief knowledge officer at another firm."The software has got to be very easy to use," they say. "Theyve got to see a ton of value init without a lot of risk.”Another problem is matching the right technology to a particular firm. As one chief marketingofficer puts it:“It’s like shooting squirrels with a cannon.”Some firms make the mistake of going too “heavy” with CRM and spending way too muchmoney and time.“It is often more basic information thats important rather than knowing everything about agiven client.”Presenting the business benefits 1. Centralized and reliable information/knowledge base (deal flow, sales pipelines etc.) for reporting ROI on marketing/business development investments. 2. Improved communications (clients, prospects, affiliates/referrers/industry marketing lists) – “Name and Shame”, “Walk on Water” reporting. 3. Better collaboration across staff/teams/practice groups. 4. Stronger relationships - clients/staff/associates/partners. 5. Greater efficiencies - staff can do more with the time they have. 6. Eliminate processing fall throughs using triggered alerts. 7. Full, complete audit trail of marketing, business development, client care activity.22WHY ALL LAW FIRMS NEED CRM SEPTEMBER 2011
  23. 23. 8. Enhanced client satisfaction through better ownership, improved service levels/escalation and follow through. 9. Better business analysis, automated trend reporting to make informed decisions using dashboards/KPI reports. 10. Single view into marketing/financial/client management. 23SEPTEMBER 2011 WHY ALL LAW FIRMS NEED CRM
  24. 24. Calculating ROIFor years law firms have sought to justify a CRM investment based on ROI. From ourperspective, it is important to base metrics on tangible, measurable goals. High level metricscan include:  Enhanced contact management and relationship intelligence  Improved marketing and mailing list management  Data qualityKnowing who your top clients are is critical but also tracking the various touch points isimportant.Client team support and cross selling is a highly quantifiable and important aspect whencalculating ROI. Some integration with practice management will help calculate the value ofnew matters generated from marketing events, newsletter subscriptions, opportunity andpitch management.Apart from these are many intangible benefits such as:  Increased client satisfaction and stronger brand equity  Increased partner satisfaction  Superior market intelligence24WHY ALL LAW FIRMS NEED CRM SEPTEMBER 2011
  25. 25. Getting StartedIt is fairly easy to see where the benefits of CRM exist in most law firms. If you are close tothe processes that turn a prospect into a client, and guarantee his or her satisfaction, youknow what would help your law firm be more successful.The next step is to take action to document, justify and convince yourself that the investmentwill help guarantee your firm‟s long term success.Our recommended approach to most firms is to start small. A small “private cloud” hosteddeployment can start from $99 per user per month. Some basic tailoring of the system can bedone in a few hours with user training conducted over a few days. Data migration can oftenbe performed by users cleaning their Outlook Contact lists and then tracking those in CRM.For firms that require an on-premise implementation licences start at just a few hundreddollars per user. 25SEPTEMBER 2011 WHY ALL LAW FIRMS NEED CRM
  26. 26. How We Can HelpWhat we do is help law firms and their staff become more effective business developers – toincrease client billings with less effort.What we believe in is that it is no longer just enough to be good at what you do. You mustalso be good at winning new clients and have systems in place to retain them.We can help coach people to become systematic, organized, disciplined, innovative andtenacious in their business development activities.Why use us? Track record – We are more focused on change, not just education.What are we looking for? Firms that share our beliefs and want to create a consistent sourceof new clients and secure revenue streams where they are in control and are prepared toinvest to get it.For more information:David BlumentalsDirector, CRM/xRM Strategywww.xRM4Legal.comDBlumentals@xRM4Legal.com26WHY ALL LAW FIRMS NEED CRM SEPTEMBER 2011

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