How Happy are Your Clients?

Client satisfaction is something you can -- and should – measure to help you grow your business.
How Happy are Your Clients?

How does your firm measure success? Perhaps more importantly: Is your firm measuring success? 


In Thomson Reuters’ 2018 U.S. State of Small Law Firms report, 88 percent of lawyers surveyed reported client satisfaction as a defining measure of firm success. At the same time, fewer than one in three firms use client feedback metrics. Reasons include a lack of time, uncertainty about how to find solutions, or an aversion to change. 

If you want to build business, client satisfaction is crucial. Determining that satisfaction (or lack of it) is one of the topics covered in a new white paper from Thomson Reuters, “The Winning Approach: How Small Law Firms Can Overcome Common Business Challenges.” As we discuss in this post, measuring client experience is fundamentally important. It can actually help your firm run more productively and it doesn’t have to take away much time from your casework.  

An easy way to measure satisfaction


One of the easiest ways to take the temperature of your clients is called a net promoter score (NPS). Very simply, an NPS measures the percentage of total clients responding to a survey question who are promoters (people who’d recommend your services) less the percentage of total clients responding who are detractors (those who don’t).

An NPS survey works best when you keep the questions simple and measurable. For instance, you can ask: “How likely are you to recommend our firm to a friend or colleague, on a scale of 1 to 10, where 10 is extremely likely and 1 is not at all likely?” 

You then can break down the responses into three categories:
+ Score of 9 or 10: Promoters, who are people who will actively recommend your firm with positive reviews.
+ Score of 7 or 8: Neutrals, people who do nothing to recommend or warn others.
+ Scores from 1 to 6: Detractors, people who may actively warn people against using your firm. 

To calculate your firm’s NPS, ignore the Neutrals and subtract the Detractors (as a percentage of the total responses) from the Promoters (as a percentage of the total responses). There is no “correct” NPS range. What an ongoing NPS program lets you do is evaluate, follow up, and monitor any changes in overall client satisfaction.

The Good and the bad: both are valuable


In crafting the survey, we also recommend asking “Why or Why not?” You want feedback, good or bad, in order to improve your service—and increase your business. All responses should include clients’ names. That way, you can follow up on complaints and concerns. This also gives you the chance to turn Detractors into Promoters. 

To conduct surveys and measure responses, you can use free digital tools, including Google Documents, Survey Monkey, and Excel. A survey can be sent out to clients at the end of an engagement or on annual basis, depending on the practice area. 

The white paper also provides case studies showing how small firms have profitably incorporated NPS surveys into their business management. Learn more by downloading the free paper here.

Listen to the on-demand webcast on 3 Secrets to Mastering Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) for small law firms.  The webcast also includes details on how to apply net promoter scores.  Click here to listen.

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