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Legal tipsMarch 17, 2021

How to choose the best CRM system for your law firm

Handling large volumes of spreadsheets and paper documentation has its own limits. While law firms tend to stick to the old ways, managing even larger amounts of data on paper becomes cumbersome during the growth stage.

In fact, having an extra piece of data to keep on paper is so unwanted, that 26% of law firms do not track their leads at all, while most law companies don't even write down a prospect's email.

Introduction

Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software offers a better, more efficient way to manage existing clients and not lose the potential prospects. It will help you organize your contact information and manage important work relationships.

This gives you more time to convert hot leads and improve client satisfaction, while the CRM System takes care of all the small management tasks.

Why do law firms, even the small ones, need CRM software?

Some law practitioners have already understood the benefits of using the CRM software for law firms, and can back up their satisfaction with solid reasons.

CRM tools automate the smaller day-to-day tasks and manage the vast volume of data collected in law firms daily.

Smaller law firms tend to avoid investing in CRM solutions because they find the need for extra tools for handling their relatively small documentation ungrounded. They believe it is more convenient to do the work manually while the company is only gaining momentum, and use document automation and other software at later stages.

But are they making the right decision?

Customer relationship management for law firms is meant to act as a repository of case information and client details. Adopting a CRM system at a later stage will overcomplicate things with processes like data migration. Engaging in client management and document automation with the help of CRM software from the very beginning is the right move. This way you have all your data organized and easily accessible since the day you start your business.

84% of law firms have admitted that using legal technology has increased efficiency in their organization. More than that, 77% of them are expanding their use of legal technology, adding document automation and other software to their work processes. In-house legal departments have also embraced the rise of the technology and are reaping the benefits.

The Top advantages of CRM software for law firms

The right CRM solution can completely change how lawyers approach their work. Below are the top advantages you will get when you set up the CRM.

  • Appointment scheduling and timely reminders: Arrive at all your meetings with clients and leads on time. With efficient time management you will get so much more done in a day.
  • Virtual Documentation: Manage documents with custom intake forms, manage invoices, accept instant online payments and e-sign contracts. This feature is not a substitute for proper document automation software, but can definitely help you with document management.
  • Workflow Automation for Trainees: Reduce the onboarding time for new players on your team by building all the rules into the CRM system. Get alerts when someone completes their tasks or misses a deadline. The entire training system will be automatic, requiring little human intervention.
  • Improved customer handling: The CRM software will guide you through the funnel all the way to closing the deal with your client. CRM involves the clients in a drip marketing campaign, which means that every marketing email they receive will be customized to look personal.
  • Team Integration: With real-time dashboards and effective communication channels, the CRM software allows your employees to always be up-to-date and perform better as a team. With different levels of user access you also don't have to worry about someone mistakenly deleting the reminder about the deal you've been working on. Projects, tasks, and cases are tracked and updated constantly.
  • According to Law Technology Today, law firms take an average of more than 3 days to respond to a new potential client. In a fast-paced world this means losing potential clients. With an integrated CRM and its automated messaging system, ignoring a prospect will not be your concern.A CRM system is perfect for managing and leads and closing sales which is why your firm needs it. Time to start tracking your deals!

    How to choose the right CRM for your firm?

    Getting just any CRM software for your legal firm will not do the trick. You need to choose the software that suits your firm's requirements. To choose the right CRM software for law firms, focus on the basics. It should add value to your work, otherwise, it is not a good investment.

    You need to define your key objectives in using the CRM because it is designed for many things, among which are the following: generate new business, track potential clients, and communicate with partners and referrals.

    Focus on what's important, and adjust your goals when necessary for a gradual, stable, and efficient growth rate.

    Rolling out with a fully functional CRM does not take much resources. You import all your data and contacts step-by-step. However, keep in mind that different CRM software have different configuration methods. If you want to customize out of the box solution to better suit your needs, you might end up hiring a software team to take care of that.

    Top 5 CRM software for lawyers

    Below is a list of the best CRM software for law firms, both starting and those with a long history:

    Hubspot

    It’s completely free, and the set-up is easy. HubSpot CRM is very popular among the beginners who have no experience working with a CRM system before.

    Advantages

  • Basic set up is free
  • Track interactions through social media and email
  • Powerful email automation capabilities
  • Set up drip campaigns and schedule follow-up emails
  • Track your pipeline and get customized reports
  • Disadvantages

  • Individual tools can sometimes lack depth
  • Not highly flexible
  • Lexicata

    Another CRM for law firms, Lexicata is a full-featured CRM system that will help you track your processes and manage your clients effectively.

    Advantages

  • Helps in the business development of legal firms by offering extensive analytics and custom reports
  • Pricing is economical, and all features are available in a single tier
  • Immediate data analysis
  • Individual user performance analytics
  • Excellent lead management
  • Disadvantages

  • Does not come with a payment processing system
  • Have to pay for additional members
  • Clio

    Clio has become one of the most widely used CRM for law firms. Designed specifically for law firms who want to get the job done, this CRM system is very inexpensive. You can choose any of the three tiers for excellent services.

    Advantages

  • Specifically designed for legal firms
  • Starter package will not require any third-party integrations
  • Higher tier packages offer additional services from other applications
  • Complete billing system integrated into the system
  • Disadvantages

  • Credit cards have a lower limit threshold
  • Takes some time to roll out
  • Lawmatics

    If you have been on the lookout for a CRM and marketing automation platform designed only for legal firms, you will truly appreciate Lawmatics. There are two pricing tiers for this software to make yoru decision easier.

    Advantages

  • Client intake becomes easy and customizable
  • Comes with robust automation and reporting feature
  • Marketing automation and CRM organization
  • Organizes email drip campaigns
  • Offers a custom email design platform
  • Disadvantages

  • E-signatures and additional users come at additional costs
  • New player on the market when compared to other, better-adjusted CRM software
  • Law Ruler

    Law Ruler has been designed to help legal firms run their business aspect of practice effectively. It is a cloud-based system that can use Google Chrome plug-ins to form a complete network. There are different price ranges to choose from.

    Advantages

  • Assists with surface-level business operations
  • Increases productivity with the help of AI-driven features and an intuitive intake system
  • Coordinates with other case management and document automation systems
  • Flexible pricing system
  • Disadvantages

  • Lacks some advanced features that other CRM software might have
  • On the expensive side, when compared to software offering similar features
  • Going for a Custom CRM system

    If you are not happy with any of the available CRM software choices, there is nothing to worry about. Every law firm has specific needs that can only be met by specific tools, all of which might not be found in a single CRM solution.

    You can make customized software just for your legal firm and integrate all your essential tools into it. Custom CRM software provides the best solution in such scenarios. All you need to do is hire a software development team that can build the custom CRM for you with all the tools and features you need. But bear in mind that you might need to stick with the software team that developed your CRM for a while, as it may require constant support and possible addition of new features. Better find a good partner for a long-term relationship.

    Summary

    Using CRM solutions for your legal firms can help automate certain legal tasks that would otherwise require manual interaction and take time.

    Finding the perfect CRM software for your law firm is no longer an issue because more and more CRM companies for lawyers are entering the market after the recent boom in popularity. All available CRM-s have their advantages and disadvantages, it is up to you to choose the one that meets your requirements.

    When choosing the best CRM for your law firm, look for a solution that helps you get the best workflow. If none of the products on the market meet your needs completely, consider hiring a software team to make a tailored solution that is right for you.

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