Hiring a new receptionist for your law firm can be a daunting task. You need to determine the right kind of receptionist for your firm, your budget to hire, the volume of phone calls you need covered, and many more factors in order to know you’re hiring the best fit.
As with any daunting task, shortcuts are often taken and mistakes are made when many attorneys hire their first receptionist (or second, or third!).
You don’t need to make the same mistakes! We’ve compiled the top mistakes made by attorneys looking for phone coverage and are going to walk you through exactly how to avoid each one.
Three Mistakes To Avoid Making When Hiring A Receptionist
Hiring your next law firm receptionist can take a lot off your plate and help you maximize your billable time. But what should you avoid doing in the process?
Not Doing Enough Research
This first mistake comes down to many attorneys being unaware that there is even anything to research. All answering services are the same, right? Wrong. Just as you would interview an in-house receptionist, you’ll need to interview answering services or virtual receptionists. Your friend who owns a chiropractic practice might have an answering service they swear by, but your law firm’s needs are going to be much different. It’s important to determine exactly what you are looking for in your receptionist before signing on with the first one you hear about.
A few questions to consider:
- Do they allow you to customize your greeting and intake questions?
- Do they schedule appointments and sell consults, or do they simply take messages and you will need to call your leads back later to schedule?
- What are their hours?
- Do they have a plan that works for your call volume?
Hiring In-House Without The Volume To Support It
The next mistake is hiring an in-house receptionist without evaluating the cost, time spent managing this team member, and the true call volume you’re experiencing. Often times, an in-house receptionist becomes a much greater expense than expected because you don’t have the call volume and new clients rolling in to support it. Not to mention that calls are still missed during restroom breaks and paid vacation time – now you’re spending your valuable time backing up this person you are paying so much for.
Letting Budget Rule Your Decision
The third mistake to avoid when hiring a receptionist for your law firm is making your choice solely based on the cost of it. To be frank, this mistake can actually end up costing you more money in the end. When it comes to client experience and selling your firm to new clients, your receptionist is the most important factor. You need to have a well-spoken and knowledgeable person on the phone that can answer questions and explain the true value of what your firm provides in order to land new clients. When you go with a budget option – a cheap message-only answering service or your cousin’s best friend’s daughter at minimum wage – you’re only hurting your growth.
Have You Made Any Of These Mistakes?
It’s never too late to master your law firm’s phones. If you’ve made these mistakes in the past but want to get your law firm’s phones on track again, register for our upcoming webinar: 30 Minutes To Mastering Your Law Firm’s Phones: Sell more consults, impress your callers, and capture every lead.
Elena, our Growth Solutions Strategist, will be going deeper on how to avoid making these mistakes and how to master your phones – once and for all!