Legal Process Improvement: Why do it and “how to” do it

Since the global financial crisis of 2007 to 2009, law firms have had to continually improve in order to maintain a balance of the following goals:

  • Happy, satisfied clients,
  • Happy, motivated & productive staff, and
  • A profitable, financially-stable firm

This is a delicate balance and focusing on one goal can have unintended consequences for the others. 

For example, to improve the profitability of the firm whilst ensuring that clients remain happy, many firms have inadvertently put more pressure on their staff and partners to work harder and bill more hours.  The impact on staff and partner well-being is well publicised in the legal press and Twitter.  

Other examples can manifest in the ‘over-servicing’ clients or having lower expectations of staff productivity being ‘subsidised’ by sub-optimal and unsustainable dips in firm or practice profitability.

Following this path, law firm leaders only really have one decision to make:

“Which goal are we willing to sacrifice in order to prioritise the others?”

But there is another way…

Firms that have consistent, well-defined and efficient ways of working are able to achieve all three goals simultaneously:

  • Consistent, high-quality processes = a higher proportion of happy, satisfied clients
  • Efficient, waste-free processes = staff and partners working smarter, not harder
  • Repeatable processes = better leverage (of junior staff and technology) and an ability for the firm to grow scalable (i.e. fee income grows faster than costs)

This series of blogs provides practical tips and guidance for getting started with Legal Process Improvement and how to improve the chances of success for these projects.

Access the first article in this series below:

How to Improve Legal Processes: Step 1- Define the objectives and scope of the project

Want to increase the chances of your project’s success?

  • Are you planning an I.T. or Digital Transformation project?
  • Are you involved in any legal innovation activity?
  • Are you carrying out a process improvement exercise?

If so, it is so important to map the current state processes at an early stage of the project.

Failure to do so can result in a lack of user-adoption & buy-in, poorly defined solutions and short-lived improvements that quickly revert back to their original state.

For an investment of just one hour of time (due to the highly practical, bite-sized lessons) and less than £100 per person, you can equip your team with the latest in legal process mapping and avoid common pitfalls.

Check out our “Process Mapping for Law Firms” eLearning course – just £147 per person for full access.

Click here to get access the first two lessons for FREE

Step 2 – Assess the current state (legal process mapping)

How to Improve Legal Processes: Step 2- Assess Current State (Legal Process Mapping)

Step 3 – Analyse the process

How to Improve Legal Processes: Step 3- Process Analysis

Step 4 – Define the future-state process

How to Improve Legal Processes: Step 4- Defining the Future State

Step 5 – Implement the solution

How to Improve Legal Processes: Step 5- Implementing the Solution

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