The discipline of law has a long history of maintaining consistency in its methods and processes; this is not surprising considering that a significant part of law practice is dependent on past precedent. Unfortunately, although this style of thinking is helpful in law, it is not practical when it comes to operating a successful company. In 2018, Thomson Reuters performed a study titled “2018 State of U.S. Small Law Firms,” published by Thomson Reuters. While the difficulties that law firms confront in their daily operations are many, it was discovered in this study that little effort is being put out into addressing these issues.
The study, which was carried out over three years, found that the problems identified by the legal firms did not differ much from one another, indicating a lack of attempts to bring about change. As small law firm proprietors, being aware of the problems that may slow down the company or prevent development is critical. Being aware of these concerns can pave the way for constructive remedies to arise. Let’s discuss what’s been plaguing the legal profession.
Difficulty in Staying Relevant
Smaller legal firms have a constant uphill battle to stay profitable in a crowded market of large corporations. Small and solo practice lawyers may find it challenging to bring in new business due to the current economic climate and customers’ decision to postpone their legal issues. Unlike their bigger rivals, most small law firms lack the marketing resources to compete with their larger competitors. The latter regularly spend thousands of dollars on their Facebook and other social media presence. Nonetheless, even with limited financial resources, small and single businesses may stay competitive by using a few marketing strategies:
Make some changes to your website’s page content to make it more relevant to COVID-19. To increase traffic to your blog, use keywords such as coronavirus and pandemic to update your content. Promote yourself as a boutique legal practice that specializes in a particular field of law. Provide alternate pricing arrangements to customers who are experiencing financial difficulties in fulfilling their requirements.
Challenges When Providing Excellent Services
A single or a small business may have trouble fulfilling customer demand because of their limited personnel and financial resources. They might lack the staff to accommodate various tasks, so they will have to outsource services to companies. For instance, they can outsource process serving to a great company. With tactics like these, organizations require excellent customer relations systems in place. For example, small firms and single lawyers will communicate with all their clients via a client portal. Clients become dissatisfied when they are not kept in the loop.
An example of a client portal, such as the one provided by TimeSolv legal billing software, lets customers maintain their private access to account information, including reviewing their legal work status. Clients have a favorable view of professional representation because they are educated and confident in them.
As a result of the pandemic’s stay-at-home orders and social distance requirements, many small and solo legal firms discovered that they were unprepared to transition to a virtual office environment. With everything from internal communication hurdles to poor document management, many difficulties have been associated with abruptly terminating physical office space. Law firm employees must interact and exchange papers with one another, even if they are physically distant from their coworkers. They must have tools to ensure that communications are maintained and that all documents are structured, secure, and readily accessible for inspection by those who need to see them.
Small and solo legal firms, just like any other company, must keep a close watch on the amount of money they spend each month on overhead costs. When more money is being spent than earned, expenses such as office rent, wages, electricity, equipment fees, and monthly software subscriptions may become an issue. In particular, during COVID, these practices must find methods to reduce expenses and save money to remain competitive. Even in the presence of sufficient cash flow, high overhead expenses may prevent sole proprietorships and small businesses from realizing their entire potential profit.
What can you do in the face of such circumstances? According to the Churchill statement, these difficulties should be seen as tremendous opportunities. There are many possibilities that contemporary technology, especially the Internet, provides today’s modern attorneys with assisting them in their endeavors. Small and single legal firms are now confronted with several challenges as they attempt to navigate the uncertainty of COVID-19 regulations. Smaller law firms may overcome these difficulties and succeed if they make sound decisions and access appropriate technology tools.