Legal Productivity

How to run a successful personal injury firm (2021)

Running a successful PI firm takes more than just winning cases. From tech stack to overhead costs, we’ll walk you through how to manage a successful personal injury firm.


Whether you’re a large personal injury law firm, hoping to become one, or just trying to maintain a successful business, you need the best practices and tools to sustain profitability and foster productivity. 

Operations management is crucial when setting up a successful personal injury law firm. Process improvements and streamlined workflows bring organization, efficiency, and accuracy to your cases -- all of which directly impact your clients’ experience and bottom line. 

Still, as your staff roster and caseloads grow in size and complexity, can you confidently say that you’re running a tight ship? 

You’ve gone through law school, maybe worked at a PI firm or two, and now you’re ready to branch off and build your practice from the ground up. 

Or you’ve been running your own firm for a while now, and you want to improve how you operate with the fundamental business skills needed to succeed in the big picture.

Use these best practices to run a sustainable, efficient personal injury firm. 

1. Optimize your Intake Management


If you’ve been around sales and marketing professionals, you might be familiar with the funnel. While the sales pipeline is quite similar, there are minute differences between B2B or B2C marketing and personal injury intake management. 

You need to get people to notice your personal injury firm (awareness), get interested in your services (consideration), and then encourage them to act now (decision). Theoretically, your personal injury firm’s intake management should look something like this: 

 

blig image casepeer

As you know, a prospect goes through the personal injury sales funnel quickly - sometimes within hours after an accident. Once someone enters into the ‘Decision’ stage of the intake pipeline, prospects will fall into two buckets: qualified and unqualified leads. Qualified leads are your ideal clients for you to work with. 

Think about timeline, budget, communication level, case complexity, and location. On the other hand, unqualified leads are those not fit for your specific offering -- maybe they don’t actually need a personal Injury lawyer, are not injured,, or perhaps they reside in a state you are not licensed in.

Personal injury lead generation can appear in the form of:

  • Prospects that see your paid advertisements 
  • Prospects that engage with your organic content such as blogs, testimonials, etc.
  • Referrals from past clients or prospects
  • Current clients with new inquiries 
  • Prospective clients or cases that are pending 
  • Open cases or clients with matters still pending 

To help you evaluate who is a high-quality lead and who is not (and where they’re coming from), successful personal injury practices should use lead intake management tools to track your leads and maintain reports. 

Reporting and attribution

Tracking your personal injury firm’s leads and law firm data within a practice management system will give you what you need to generate reports and find valuable insights across your pipeline. 

You can answer questions such as: 

  • What marketing channels are driving high-quality leads? Low-quality leads?
  • Are you generating a positive ROI from your marketing investments? 
  • How many new clients come through referrals? 
  • How many prospects successfully convert to clients? Analyze and find an average funnel conversion rate to benchmark your current lead conversion rates, then optimize over time. 

Tracking witnesses and meaningful relationships for your PI firm doesn’t have to be complicated. Once you find the proper pipeline management and optimization process for your firm, you can move on to step two: lowering your overhead costs. 

2. Lower your Overhead Costs

At your personal injury firm, there are ten buckets of business expenses incurred. The two you'll encounter most frequently are operating expenses and overhead costs. To improve how you manage your law firm, focusing on overhead costs will help thin your costs and leave you room to operate. 

Overhead costs are those you incur during general business functions.  You will still have to pay them, even if your firm doesn't bring in business. The fees that fall into this category include salaries, credit cards, and office supplies.

You can reduce overheads by making cuts or changes in various areas of your firm, such as:

  • Outsourcing various tasks to specialty firms can help you fill in gaps in staffing while also placing the responsibility on another entity. Outsourcing also means you will see a drop in the amount you spend on office supplies.
  • A smaller, leaner team is a great option to look at if it helps lower your firm’s wages and allows you to deliver positive client outcomes. 
  • Downsize physical office space and hire remote or hybrid employees to help you scale up and down according to your current caseload, all without investing more resources in physical office space. 

Readjusting where you invest financial resources can help your personal injury law firm run better, or it can tank your budgets. If you’re not sure where you’re investing too much (or too little) of your firm’s resources, we’ll cover the importance of operations reporting now. 

3. Invest in a Practice Management Platform

When trying to manage your personal injury firm, technology is your best friend. There are many different collaboration, case management, and business operations tools you can choose from. What matters is that you find the best set of tools (or platform) to meet your unique need. 

Investing in a legal practice management solution tailored for personal injury practices will help your firm become more productive and simplify your business operations and client management processes.

At a minimum, your legal practice management solution should include three categories of tools: Client experience, practice management, and case management.  

Client experience

How you engage with and support your clients can either make them feel confident or concerned. With the following tools, you can meet them where they are and provide the best support possible. 

  • Client intake portal 
  • Built-in communication tools like text and email 
  • Customer relationship management 
  • Appointment scheduling 

Business operations 

Running a tight ship means staying on top of your expenses, employee productivity, collection and realization rates, and more. With the following tools, you can stay on top of your firm’s critical business operations (and still sleep at night). 

  • Reporting and analysis
  • Third-party platform integrations
  • Task management 
  • Automation 
  • Template generation
  • Document hubs 
  • Search functionality 
  • Cost tracking and payment processing 

Case management

Last but not least, how you manage cases directly impacts your outcomes. Using an organized, collaborative case management solution will give you the transparency into deadlines and cases to make the best decisions possible. 

  • Calendaring and deadlines
  • Timeline management
  • Litigation tracking 
  • Settlement negotiation tools 
  • Case dashboards 

A practice management solution will supercharge your firm’s operations and set you on the path to success. 

If you’re currently dissatisfied with your practice management solution, there are specific modern legal practice and case management platforms designed solely for personal injury. Don’t settle for anything less than the features outlined above as you evaluate legal practice management solutions. 

Managing your personal injury practice is easier with CASEpeer

Running a successful personal injury practice takes the right combination of client care, business development, and legal expertise. It’s hard to do this alone, and sometimes you may not be ready to hire additional support. 

If you would like to learn more about managing your firm with a legal practice management solution designed for personal injury, get in touch with the team at CASEpeer.

We would love to find out how we can best meet your needs and help prepare your firm for success. 

 

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