Birmingham Law Society

Law Firm

The Challenge: Have you ever wondered what your clients say about you after a meeting?  We mean, what they really say? Wouldn't it be great to gain an insight into what is said after the door closes? Have you ever considered a client engagement programme for your firm? In other words, putting systems in place to collate the views of the people who matter most and validating that you deliver what you promise.

The Solution: In an increasingly ‘data heavy’ business world, many organisations now realise that they don’t have systems in place to extract the necessary insights from this information. To be truly effective, ‘listening campaigns’ need to be built into the core of organisational planning.  Occasionally, these systems will also throw up unforeseen issues that need emergency response (e.g. extremely dissatisfied clients at risk of loss).  As work published by the Legal Ombudsman highlighted last year, there is a strong business case for improving complaint handling within firms.

A significant component of this model is communicating that you have listened and spelt out what has been done in response.  The most successful brands in any sector can clearly demonstrate ‘You Said, We Did’.  We are working with leading firms in Birmingham who recognise this and are setting the pace with their client engagement strategies.

We conducted research on behalf of Birmingham Law Society by launching their inaugural membership survey last year. Over 300 members participated from across the legal profession and region, giving their views on a range of issues including their membership package as well as how their firm listens to clients.    

What is clear is that members of the legal profession often have very different reasons for joining the Society initially. Those in firms outside Birmingham city centre join to benefit more from support and advice services, whereas those based in the city are more likely to have joined for career progression opportunities

The Outcome: The results of this listening exercise gave Birmingham Law Society invaluable insights into what makes members tick - what they really value about their membership and what additional elements, if any, they would like to see included in their package.

Overall, the Society is perceived by members to be traditional, very member-focused, helpful and relevant to members' needs.   The benefits package is felt to be appropriate although there is an appetite for even more customised CPD and networking events.

Engagement tools also help us to test new ideas and propositions, checking the interest levels of prospective new audiences.  For example, we also gained feedback on a new initiative - the proposed Members’ Helpline - which suggested that engaged members feel that they, and their peers, would benefit from. Those who currently say they would find a Members’ Helpline most useful are likely to be sole practitioners, individual members, younger members and those working in the city centre.