Most law firms have a CRM system, but few can say that they are actually getting return on their CRM investment. How much value it provides in a law firm depends on attorney buy-in. If your firm wants to increase adoption, you have to show them not just why CRM is important for the success of the firm, but what’s in it for them. Here are some suggestions for demonstrating real value for your attorneys.
For CRM to succeed in a law firm, the attorneys first need to understand that if they commit some time to it, CRM can make their professional lives easier and less stressful, give them better control of the business development process—and increase their earnings.
But they also need to understand specifically how it will help them achieve these results. Every attorney is different, and each wants or needs different things to be successful in their day-to-day practice. The way to get adoption is to spend time with each attorney or key groups of attorneys to find out what they need to be more successful. What problems could be solved by CRM? What processes could be automated? What information could be provided to enhance their business development efforts?
Then it needs to be configured to meet specific attorney needs. The beauty of CRM is that it can do a thousand things, but realistically it should only do two or three – and those things can be different for each attorney. Take the time to build real value for the attorneys. Once the CRM begins helping groups of attorneys succeed, more attorneys will begin to want to use it.
Another key to getting attorneys to buy in is dedicating resources to support their use of the system. In a law firm, time is money… literally. Busy attorneys who bill hundreds or sometimes more than $1000 per hour often can’t (or won’t) spend the time to fully utilize the system themselves—and this may not be the most effective use of their time anyway. Often the best way to get ROI on the CRM investment is to dedicate additional resources to give attorneys what they need to succeed. This may include the time, money and/or people they need to help them get information—and value—from the CRM system.
Succeeding with CRM is not fast or easy, and success may look different for every firm. But getting attorneys to recognize what potentially is in CRM for them and getting them to use it can build a groundswell of support in the firm and have the next attorney or group knocking at the Marketing department door asking, “What’s In It For Me?”
In our next post, “When Attorneys Ask, ‘What’s In It (CRM) For Me?’ – Part 2,” we will share 11 different ways you can add value for your attorneys with CRM.
– For more than a decade, the team at CLIENTSFirst Consulting has been helping law and other professional services firms and other organizations successfully select and implement CRM and eMarketing systems to maximize value, adoption, and return on investment. If you need help achieving CRM success, please contact us at 404-249-9914 or Info@ClientsFirstConsulting.com.