For lawyers, especially for those billing in six-minute increments, time is money. Investing in a business communications solution that maximizes efficiency and productivity is the key to maximizing time. In addition, a law firm’s reputation is vital to its success, and is reflected in everything from their advertising to their voicemail recording. While there are multiple reasons law firms turn to a voice over IP (VoIP) solution for their calling needs, there are additional unified communications (UC) features they need in order to be successful in the highly competitive legal industry.
While every UC feature lends a hand in creating a solid client experience, there are some that stand out for specific types of businesses. From CRM integration to mobility, here are the top UC features for lawyers:
Advanced CRM Integration
Lawyers handle multiple cases and clients at a time, and keeping track of all that information can be daunting. UC solutions allow for integration of the firm’s CRM (customer relationship management) systems and client databases, which prepares employees for the client interaction before they even answer the phone. When a client calls the firm with an issue, a screen pop-up will show pertinent client information, which can include name, contact information, GPS location, notes of prior discussions, and more. This not only personalizes the client experience, but it conveys the information required to get the client to the appropriate person right away. Clients expect top-notch service and communication from their legal team, so making the right impression and personalizing their experience with your firm is essential to building trust and expanding your business.
Law firms benefit from a call recording feature for a few reasons. First, recording a call aids in keeping track of billable hours for invoicing. Lawyers can easily filter recordings by type of call (incoming or outgoing), date, specific client, or length of call, and transfer the .mpeg or .wav file to the appropriate client’s folder. The ability to record calls also comes in handy for ensuring accuracy during conversations, such as when a client is conveying important information about a case, or for when your lawyer needs to clarify something that was said. Emotions can run high when a client calls into a law firm, and the ability to go back and listen to a conversation to ensure accuracy is vital.
Voicemail to Email
With most UC solutions, voicemails and e-mails are handled the same way, which is important because both are equally significant for reference and documenting purposes. Voicemails are automatically received and stored as .wav files, which can be accessed via business phone, mobile softphone application, or email. Lawyers can simply store the voicemail files into the appropriate client folders just as they would with an e-mail.
Clients expect their legal representation to be on call to handle issues as they arise, yet lawyers are often in and out of the court room, in meetings with other clients, or traveling- so getting in touch can be tricky. Fixed Mobile Convergence (FMC) gives lawyers the ability to stay connected. These personal call rules can be set up to enable incoming calls to ring on any device, in any order. Here are some sample call rules an attorney might set up:
- Calls from the general public gets forwarded to attorney’s personal voicemail
- Incoming calls from other law firms (working on an active case) are forwarded to attorney’s office assistant
- If attorney’s assistant is not available, then calls from other law firms are routed back to attorney’s personal voicemail
- Active clients’ call get routed directly to attorney’s mobile phone, but only during business hours
- Calls from firms’ senior management/partners, or from VIP clients are directed to attorney’s mobile phone, at any time.
This is just one example of how a lawyer may choose to set personal call rules. Having the ability to customize the flow of incoming calls is essential for saving time, staying organized, and knowing what to expect. Lawyers with this type of set up will always know whether an incoming call at 2AM is worth answering. FMC also allows busy lawyers to seamlessly transfer calls that began via desk phone or headset to their mobile phone, so they can keep the conversation going while they drive to their next meeting.
Every law firm should choose a UC solution that offers a mobility application, as it acts as a virtual extension of the desk phone and allows the legal team to take and make calls from anywhere. With Switchvox Mobile, all of the UC features available on the desk phone are also available on a mobile phone, such as call recording, conferencing, voicemail, status control and more. When calls are made, the law firm’s caller ID information passes to the client as opposed to the lawyer’s personal cell number. This ensures the law firm’s brand is passing through to clients and the lawyer’s personal contact information is kept private.
As mentioned above, time is money. Unified Communications solutions such as Switchvox provide your legal team with the tools and systems needed to ensure your firm can compete in the highly competitive legal industry. While also reducing costs, Switchvox helps improve interactions with clients, recruit and retain top talent, and provide your team with mobility and flexibility.
Discover for yourself how Switchvox and Switchvox Cloud can change the way your firm communicates