Sexual abuse is a severe crime that covers a wide range of non-consensual sexual behaviors against another person, for example, a child or a person with a disability. Since a sexual abuse offense can happen any time of the day, most criminal law firms nowadays are outsourcing answering services to help them handle their communication channels and capture every potential business lead.
To stay competitive and offer the best services to any potential client that tries to contact you through any of your business communication channels, you should consider working with an answering service provider. Finding the right answering service for your law firm is a sure intelligent way to solve many challenges in your practice and outwork competitors while asleep.
Are you interested in outsourcing an answering service for your law firm? This article contains everything you need to know before you begin your hunt to find a reliable answering service to take your firm's customer service to the next level.
An Answering Service at a Glance
An answering service is typically a call center with live agents who can talk or chat with your clients on various communication channels on your behalf when you could otherwise be unavailable, for example, after work hours, during holidays. If your law firm specializes in sexual abuse crimes, you should expect client calls even at night when you are asleep.
How you handle your potential clients' calls, emails, and messages after work hours when they need you the most can say a lot about your firm’s credibility and dedication to help your clients. If you want to improve your firm's customer service and don't have enough resources to accommodate new employees, an answering service is what you need.
Knowing How to Find the Right Answering Service/Call Center for Your Law Firm
There are several benefits associated with retaining the services of an answering service in a criminal defense law firm, but finding a reliable service provider for your specific practice can be a daunting task. Nevertheless, as a sexual abuse defender or attorney, an attorney answering service would be an excellent investment to boost your customer service and productivity in your office.
To make the most from an answering service in your law firm, you should consider the factors below to find a professional answering service:
The Type of Confidentiality Agreement They Have in Place to Protect Their Clients’ Information
You want a service provider who understands the importance of confidentiality in legal issues. Attorney-client privilege must remain after outsourcing an answering service in your law firm. Look for an answering service provider with a confidentiality agreement with its answering agents because sexual abuse cases are sensitive.
When a victim of sexual abuse discusses his/her case with an answering agent in your law firm, they expect the information to be confidential. Furthermore, they are unaware they are discussing their sensitive sexual abuse case with a third party in your law firm.
Hence, before you sign any contract with a prospective answering service provider, you should ensure they have a confidentiality agreement in place. Also, for confidentiality purposes, it is upon you to let your prospective answering agents understand the information to discuss with your potential clients and what they shouldn't.
Whether They are Available 24/7 to Respond to Sexual Abuse Cases
To make the most of an answering service, you should find a provider who will be there for your potential client 24/7. After work hours or during holidays, you want to spend time with your family and sleep without interruptions from clients.
For that matter, you should find an answering service provider that is ready to help your potential and current clients any time of the day throughout the year. Having an answering service that offers 24/7 services ensures your current and potential clients can speak with a real person any time of the day.
If a potential client calls your office line at night, it means he/she needs your urgent help. Talking to an automated robot is not an option a client with an aggravated rape case would like to hear when he/she needs to speak to a live person.
To capture these potential business leads and stay competitive, you should consider working with a 24/7 service provider because most of your competitors out there already have live call and message answering agents. Additionally, considering the number of legal options any law consumer has nowadays, you must show your potential clients that you care about them by being available every hour around the clock.
Partnering with an answering service that offers 24/7 services will improve your legal management strategies and give you peace of mind for improved mental health and optimum productivity the next day.
Whether They Have Bilingual Answering Agents or Not
A reliable answering service will help you capture potential business leads and provide you bilingual support services to attract new clients. In a nation with people of different ethnicities and races, it is vital to have bilingual answering agents who can speak a language like Spanish, which is very common here.
Most law firms lose potential business opportunities because of a language barrier. However, you can avoid this by hiring an answering service provider with bilingual virtual receptionists or answering agents. Having bilingual answering agents will also enable you to advertise your business to Spanish-speaking potential clients in your area, which means more new business opportunities.
If your competitors around your region do not offer bilingual support, outsourcing Spanish-speaking answering agents can give you an incredible competitive edge. Ensure you confirm with your prospective answering service provider if they can provide bilingual support before you make any significant commitment.
Whether They Can Categorize Your Potential Clients' Calls in Order of Importance or Not
An answering service provider with experience dealing with victims of sexual abuse offenses can efficiently work with your office team to increase your law firm's productivity and efficiency, which means better customer service.
All clients who call your office line are essential for your business growth, but all attorneys agree that some clients' calls are more important and urgent than others. To make the most of an answering service, you should find a provider who understands the importance of clients' call filtering and case-to-case prioritization.
Knowing which clients' calls or messages to prioritize when you come into your office in the morning is important because time is of the essence in some cases. Therefore, in addition to responding to your potential clients' calls, a reliable service provider should know how to filter your clients' calls in the order of priority.
A reliable answering service will have a unique plan to enable them to filter and record your clients' calls in the order of importance to improve efficiency in your office and save time. Having a particular system that can record your potential clients' names, needs, phone numbers, and the time of the call in one place can make it easy for you to plan your week's work.
Whether They Have Modern Means of Recording Your Clients Calls or Messages or Not
Installing automatic message and call recording systems in your firm can be expensive and time-consuming. In addition, installing these systems in your office will require you to hire a specialist to come into the office, which will interrupt your ability to continue with your business.
Apart from that, you might also have to train your office team members on proper ways to operate this new technology in your firm or hire new employees familiar with the systems. However, partnering with an equipped answering service can eliminate the need to install these expensive systems and all other costs that come with them.
Look for an answering service that can offer you seamless integration of these crucial systems in your firm to ensure prompt recording of your client calls and messages for top-level efficiency in your office.
Their Ability and Capability to Handle Multiple Calls and Messages Simultaneously
If you have a single receptionist in your office, there is a high chance that he/she can only manage limited calls and messages from your clients simultaneously. A single receptionist in your office cannot handle multiple potential clients' calls and send appointment reminders to your current clients as an answering service can.
Having an answering service in your law firm will reduce time wastage in your firm's operations. Your office team members will no longer focus on responding to your clients' calls and messages on various online chatting platforms. Sometimes you might even have to hire new employees to help you handle call overflows, which is a costly expense to your firm.
However, you don't have to incur all these unnecessary costs because an answering service can solve all this to capture every potential business lead while ensuring maximum client satisfaction at a cheaper fee. If you are already experiencing a challenge in managing multiple calls from your clients, you need an answering service.
Sexual abuse cases are some of the most frequent and common offenses here, making it necessary to have a strategy to handle multiple clients' calls simultaneously. To utilize your limited time in a day, you should team up with an answering service that can handle multiple calls and messages from your clients.
Whether They Can Provide Client Outreach Services or Not
There are several answering services out there that can provide you with outbound services as well. Outbound or outreach services involve following up on your list of existing leads and making cold calls to find a new lead. An answering service that offers outbound services can also conduct market research on your behalf to boost your firm's customer service and outwork your competitors.
If you are already experiencing challenges in following up on your long list of business leads, an answering service can solve this issue and more. In addition to providing you with inbound services, a dependable answering service should also offer you outbound services, which are critical to your firm's consistent growth.
The Type of Technology They Have to Improve Your Law Firm’s Customer Service
A reliable answering service that wants to remain competitive will be aware of the relevant technological advancement in their profession to ensure outstanding services to their clients. Know the type of technology your prospective service provider has to increase your firm's customer service efficiency and experience before you sign any agreement.
Don't forget to ask if they have technology or equipment to prevent unnecessary interruptions in your services when there is an unexpected power outage or other technical issues. A dedicated and reliable answering service provider will have a team of technicians ready to fix all kinds of technical issues that may affect your firm's operations and services during any time of the day.
Working with an answering service with every type of technology you need to enhance your customer service will reduce the costs you would incur to buy new equipment to stay competitive.
Other Services Services They Can Offer Apart From Responding to Your Clients’ Calls and Messages
When looking for an answering service for your law firm, you should pay attention to all the types of services they can offer because some answering services are somewhat like a bare-bone considering what they can offer.
Apart from responding to your client's concerns and queries in your firm's communication channels, you would also want an answering service that can do the following:
- Schedule appointments and send reminders to your current and prospective clients
- Process your clients’ payments on your behalf
- Flawlessly integrate with the technology or software that you already have in place in your law firm.
Some answering service providers can also offer you the above services if you let them. For example, if you need appointment scheduling services, the answering service agents will only need your calendar and guidelines showing which appointments to book.
Find an Answering Service Near Me
With these kinds of extra services to ensure the best customer service experience in your law firm, you will not have to worry about meeting with your clients even in a busy week.
Your receptionists and other office team members might be able to keep your law firm operations running smoothly, but it might be expensive and time-consuming. For maximum productivity in your law firm, you should consider outsourcing an experienced and reliable legal answering service that knows how to relate with victims of sexual abuse.
The above questions should be able to narrow down your options when finding an answering service to work with for an enhanced customer service experience and reputation in your law firm.