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Client care for law firms

Top Tips for Enhancing Client Care in Law Firms

In today’s competitive legal landscape, the quality of client care can significantly impact a law firm’s reputation and its ability to attract and retain clients. When it comes to choosing a product or service, consumers now have a wealth of information at their fingertips to consider before making their decision. That being said, it’s essential for you, as a solicitor, to pull out all the stops to ensure existing and potential clients choose your law firm for all their legal needs over a competitor.

In this article we are sharing our top tips aimed at equipping solicitors with actionable strategies to enhance client care, ensuring clients not only receive top-tier legal representation but also feel valued, understood, and supported throughout their legal journey.

The importance of client care in law firms

But firstly, why is client care so essential in the legal sector? Going on the current statistics, we already know that solicitors have a heavy workload juggling the demands of their existing clients. It may be tempting to have the attitude of ‘you win some, you lose some’ particularly for those with a full client list, perhaps in the favourable position of being unable to take on new clients.

However, to hold such a view would be foolish. In the blink of an eye, things can change dramatically. A new law firm opens in the locality, a series of negative reviews, or a valuable team member jumps ship to a different firm. Any of these situations would most certainly have a negative impact on your client base, and in turn, your firm’s growth. In fact, according to a top CX expert, 72% of consumers will share a positive experience with 6 or more people. On the other hand, if they’re not satisfied, 13% of them will share their experience with 15 or even more.

So, to return to our initial question of why client care is so important? The answer lies in the inherently personal and often stressful nature of legal matters. For many clients, engaging a solicitor is a crucial step in resolving deeply personal and potentially life-altering issues. Excellent client care is essential not just for standing out from competitors, but for the very foundation of how legal services should be provided. It’s about building trust, creating lasting relationships, and improving the firm’s reputation through positive feedback and recommendations.

Simply put, exceptional client care keeps clients coming back and helps the business grow by turning first-time clients into long-term supporters.

The Pillars of Exceptional Client Care for Law Firms

Building Trust through Transparency and Communication

Effective communication is the cornerstone of any successful solicitor-client relationship. It involves more than just updating clients on their case status. It’s equally about establishing a dialogue where clients feel heard, and their concerns are addressed promptly and effectively.

  • Regular updates: Waiting for updates can be a frustrating for anxious clients. Implement a system for regular case updates, ensuring clients are always in the loop regarding their case progress and any potential hurdles.
  • Simplify legal jargon: Legal matters can be complex and daunting. You must remember that the legal lingo is something you, as a solicitor, will be familiar with. However, for the client, this may be their first time grappling with all the legal terminology. Break down complex legal terms and process into language that’s easy for clients to understand.
Empathy: The Heart of Client Interaction

Empathy for client care

Empathy goes beyond mere understanding.  It’s about genuinely putting yourself in your clients’ shoes, recognising the emotional and psychological stress they may be experiencing. And it means tailoring your approach to meet their needs with sensitivity and compassion.

  • Active listening: A famous quote springs to mind here: “The biggest communication problem we have is we do not listen to understand. We listen to reply.” This is certainly a skill to be perfected when it comes to client care. Encourage your team to practice active listening, showing genuine interest in clients’ stories and concerns. Truly listening to clients can provide invaluable insights into their needs and expectations. Our Perfecting Listening Skills for Solicitors article is well worth a read for those looking to work on this valuable skill.
  • Personalised service: Every client that comes through your door will have different needs. It’s important to recognise the individuality of each client. A personalised approach, acknowledging their specific circumstances and preferences, will make each client feel special. This will undoubtedly enhance their experience with your law firm.


Accessibility: Being There When It Matters

In an era where instant access to information is the norm, clients expect their solicitors to be accessible and responsive. This doesn’t mean being available 24/7, but rather ensuring clients have clear, reliable channels through which they can reach you when necessary.

  • Multi-channel communication: When you have clients from all age groups, it’s essential to offer various communication channels. Phone, email, client portals, and even messaging apps are all acceptable forms of communication. Clients can choose the option they feel most comfortable with.
  • Responsive service: One of the most common complaints a consumer will have with a business or service provider is the lack or tardiness of response to their query. A clear way of avoiding such complaints is being upfront with your clients about the response times. According to a report conducted by Clio, 79% of clients expected a response time of 24 hours from their solicitor. With this in mind, set realistic expectations for response times and strive to meet or exceed them. Quick responses signal to clients that their concerns are a priority.


Feedback: The Gateway to Continuous Improvement

Feedback on client care

As Bill Gates once said, “we all need people who will give us feedback. That’s how we improve.” Requesting client feedback is crucial for any law firm aiming to improve its client care. It provides you with direct insights into your firm’s strengths and areas for improvement from the client’s perspective.

  • Surveys and questionnaires: Make it easy for clients to provide feedback through surveys, questionnaires, or direct communication. Unsure of how to ask your clients for testimonials? Don’t be afraid of it – we have the perfect article to help you here.  
  • Actionable insights: Remember, getting feedback is pointless unless actioned upon. Analyse the feedback received for patterns and trends to identify areas for improvement. Implement changes based on this feedback to continually enhance your client care practices.

 The bonus of getting positive feedback is that it can be used as a client testimonial (with the client’s approval). Positive testimonials play a key role in an effective digital marketing strategy through social media posts and website content.

Leveraging Technology to Enhance Client Care for law firms

Our good friend, technology plays an important role in modernising and streamlining client care practices. From client management systems to online portals, technology can significantly enhance the efficiency and quality of client service.

  • Client portals: Use client portals to provide clients with easy access to case documents, updates, and a direct line of communication with their solicitor.
  • Automated updates and reminders: Implement automated systems for case updates and reminders, ensuring clients are always informed and engaged with their case progress.


Training and Development: Empowering Your Team

Training for client care

The quality of client care is directly influenced by the skills and attitudes of your team. Investing in regular training and development is essential to equip your team with the necessary tools and knowledge to provide exceptional client care.

  • Client care training: Conduct regular training sessions focused on communication skills, empathy, and client service best practices. This has an added advantage of bringing your team together and encouraging them to put themselves into the shoes of an anxious or confused client.
  • Mentorship and support: Foster a culture of mentorship within your firm, where more experienced solicitors can guide and support junior members in developing their client care skills.


The Solicitors’ Growth perspective on client care for law firms

It goes without saying that exceptional client care is the hallmark of a successful and reputable of any business. Given the stressful and sensitive nature of the legal profession, it’s even more important to go the extra mile for clients seeking legal assistance. However, elevating the standard of client care within your law firm is an ongoing journey that requires commitment, innovation, and a deep understanding of your clients’ needs.

By focusing on the areas we have highlighted above, law firms can create a positive and supportive environment for their clients, achieving a level of client care that not only meets but exceeds client expectations. Solicitors can foster stronger, more meaningful relationships with their clients, leading to enhanced client satisfaction, loyalty, and ultimately, firm success.

Remember, in the competitive field of law, it is the quality of client care that can distinguish your firm and solidify its reputation as a leader in the legal community.

Learn more about client care for law firms through our webinars

If you’d like to know about nurturing clients for the long term, check out our webinar Lawyer for Life: How to Optimise and Maximise Client Relationships. In this webinar, we are joined by two powerhouses of the legal world, Teresa Payne and Nigel Harper for a discussion on the lifetime value our clients can bring if we nurture them effectively. You can purchase this webinar and many more on demand here

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