Understanding Your Clients Throughout Their Lifecycle

If you want to avoid stringing together multiple manual processes with tech solutions, give your clients a better experience and understand your client base better, then implementing thorough client lifecycle management processes is the logical next step.

Download the PDF

Every client who comes to your law firm experiences the same four touchpoints: acquisition, delivery, loyalty and retention. These four stages represent the client lifecycle, and mastering them is key to your business growth.

By putting your client at the very centre of your business decisions, you can build a clearer picture of their expectations and their risk profile—all the while leveraging technology to drive efficiency and profitability within your firm.

Whether it’s your processes, your technology or your customer service, honestly assessing how your law firm is performing at each of the following stages is the first step to understanding where your client lifecycle might be falling behind.


Better understand risk with effective due diligence

Collect client information easily for future analysis

Commence billable work faster

When it comes to client acquisition, your main goal is to turn a prospective client into a paying client as quickly as possible. That means rapid communications, intuitive onboarding and convenient payment/signature methods.

This is the stage of the lifecycle where clients will build their first impressions of your law firm.

Having efficient digital processes in place from the start will therefore go a long way in dampening any initial doubts they might be having – not to mention making your life a lot easier too.


Identify bottlenecks in processes and drive efficiencies

Automate digital processes to focus on billable time

Enhance CRM or case management systems

As the section of the lifecycle which usually involves the most touchpoints, the delivery stage is where clients will develop the majority of their opinions about you. Alongside successfully resolving their case, delivering a seamless customer experience here is non-negotiable if you really want to exceed their expectations.

Automating traditionally time-consuming tasks is one of the best ways you can do this, for two reasons. First, it frees up time to focus on more valuable work. Second, it’s more convenient for the client. Make sure you’re constantly evaluating your delivery processes to see how you can continue to improve them well into the future.


Improve client satisfaction across the board

Review feedback to streamline client journeys

Generate more positive reviews

A satisfied client is a loyal client. But if they’re not telling other people about their experience, how much value are they actually bringing to you? Making feedback a fundamental part of the workflow loop, and giving clients incentives to provide it, will help make their loyalty count.

Remember to use that feedback to your advantage. Both positive and negative reviews should be taken on board to understand where you are exceeding expectations and where you are falling short, so that you can optimise the lifecycle even further for future clients.


Identify new opportunities for scaling client work

Increase word of mouth referrals

Secure new instructions from existing and new clients

More than any other stage, retention is the key to business growth. Winning more work from existing clients, as well as generating instructions from new ones, will help you expand further and faster than before.

With an effective overview of all your clients, you can reflect on which ones bring the most value to you and focus your efforts on them. The good news is, if you’ve put the right amount of work into the previous three stages of the cycle, then retention should happen naturally.

On-demand webinar

How Legaltech Drives Efficiencies in the Client Lifecycle and Across the Firm

In this seminar hosted by Law Society of Scotland, we explore how modern, digital-first law firms use legaltech solutions to drive efficiencies throughout their client lifecycle, make better business decisions and drive growth opportunities. Watch it now >

Financing the client lifecycle

You can’t discuss the lifecycle of a client without talking about finance as well. Not only is finance crucial for investment, it’s also an ever-present aspect of client interaction. Potential touchpoints include:

  • Payment for initial meetings and consultations
  • Money on account of costs and disbursem­­ents
  • Part payments in a fixed fee model 
  • Invoice payments
  • Partial / recurring payments
  • Credit control 

Providing clients with an easy way to make those payments is therefore one of the most effective things you can do to improve client satisfaction and keep them coming back for more.

But there’s another benefit. And it’s a very important one.

Unlocking your cash flow

Did you know the average invoice payment time across UK law firms is 60 days?

However, when law firms include a link to pay online, that figure drops to as little as 8 hours. It may seem trivial, but enabling payments to be collected faster and reconciled easier frees up cash flow, and in a big way.

Legal payments by the numbers

93% of law firm customers believe it’s important their lawyer uses technology to make dealing with them easier and less expensive

80% of clients expect to be able pay their invoices online, but only 34% of recent law firm clients said they had the option to pay using digital card payment methods

71% of consumers believe having multiple ways to pay a bill increases their overall satisfaction with a service

55% of law firms don’t have enough cash to cover one month’s operating expenses


How to Become a More Client-centric Law Firm

Law firms must continuously look for ways to exceed expectations, increase their value and respond to emerging client needs in an agile fashion. In this guide, find out how to become a more client-centric law firm, from understanding what “client-centric legal services” really look like, to how legal services and technology go hand in hand.
Read the insights now >

Regulating the client lifecycle

Before you can think about improving the client lifecycle, you need to ensure you are ticking all the regulatory boxes. More than most other industries, law firms have to meet a hefty amount of strict regulatory requirements. In order to do that, having a bird’s-eye view of risk across your client base is essential.

Underpinning client lifecycle management is a commitment on the behalf of law firms to ensure they have the policies, controls and procedures in place to comply with regulations and professional codes of conduct.

But those processes also need to work in practice, so be sure to standardise them across your firm. Otherwise, time-strapped lawyers will adopt their own ways of working. More often than not, this is where corners are cut and compliance breaches happen.

The bottom line?

Law firms that manage risk in an effective and efficient manner not only unlock value throughout the business, streamline processes and improve visibility of their entire client base, they also help instil a compliance culture across their firm.

regulatory cycle law firm

7 ways client lifecycle management enables
more compliant operations

  1. Putting clients at the centre of your decision making gives you full visibility across your entire client base.

  2. By providing you with a single source of truth, using effective client lifecycle management processes makes it easier for auditors to find the information they need.

  3. Leveraging technology which is risk monitored on an ongoing basis greatly reduces the chances of something being missed.

  4. Comprehensive audit trails ensure that critical data and information is both accurate and stored securely.
  1. Consistent, firm-wide processes optimise efficiency while also reducing the risk of team members employing unregulated ways of working.

  2. Efficient processes also speed up risk escalation, resulting in faster resolutions.

  3. Permissions ensure that only certain users can access various technology and information, enabling the safer storage and access of data.

Learn more about Legl’s risk & compliance solutions >

Ready to get started with Legl?

Legl uses the information provided to contact you about our products and services. You may unsubscribe at any time. For further information, see our Privacy Policy.