Posted by: johnocunningham | August 9, 2014

Best Blog Posts of July: Why Law Firms Should Measure Client Satisfaction

This is my 20th post in a series of monthly features that I have dubbed “Best of My Blog Roll.” The concept is simple – at the end of a month I often peruse my own blog roll (see that column on the right) for material created by other bloggers that I think is most worthy of sharing with others, and then I report on it here.

For the month of June 2014, I have chosen to highlight a pair of related blog posts. One is by Tom Kane of Kane Consulting, entitled “Who Gives a Darn If Clients Are Satisfied?”

The other post is by Erik Mazzone on his Law Practice Matters blog, entitled, “Why Your Firm Should Begin Tracking Client Satisfaction Today.”

Mazzone’s post includes a link to a publication and data from Beaton Research and Consulting, demonstrating that client satisfaction measures are early and leading indicators of where your firm is headed, up or down.

Kane’s post also cites an online survey performed by the Remsen Group and Sterling Strategies, revealing that 91 percent of law firm leaders responded that they have “limited or no measures of client satisfaction.” That number is a bit high compared to other reported numbers on more scientific surveys, but those surveys too reveal that only about half of law firms with at least 50 lawyers are doing client surveys of any kind.

This is stunning when you consider that every prized corporate client that every law firm is chasing probably surveys their customers and/or clients AT LEAST annually, if not more often. I worked in-house with three different companies that all surveyed their customers multiple times per year. The management teams in those companies, as in most companies, were extremely concerned with “customer satisfaction measures” all of the time. They were also concerned with what was causing customer satisfaction or defection levels to rise or fall.

As a result, we asked our customers’ questions, such as: Which of our products (or services) do you like better than our competitors? What are we doing better than our competitors? What are we doing not as well as competitors? What products or services are missing from our offerings? How can we improve our service?

The fact that so many law firms are not measuring client satisfaction, much less searching for root causes of client satisfaction measurements, represents a sorry state for the profession, but an amazing opportunity for those firms that want to start acting like their prized corporate clients and imitating their success.

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