Back in August, I wrote a blog post called “How to make your CRM work for you.” One of the tips in that post was to start using your CRM to create firmwide buy-in. I received several comments from people saying that getting attorneys to use a CRM system was next to impossible and asking if I had any ideas on how to improve user rates. Well, here you go – 6 ways to entice attorneys to use your law firm CRM system.
- Keep it simple.
You need to have a law firm CRM that is an easy-to-use, fairly intuitive system. Information has to be easy to enter and to find. There should not be too many fields to fill in or it will be viewed as time-consuming and, thus, not worth the time. The trick is finding a CRM that is user-friendly without compromising functionality. Sometimes a system that is easy to use also lacks the ability to sort, filter or create complex reports necessary for business development. You can usually find a workaround, and sometimes it’s worth sacrificing some functionality so you get more people who are willing to use the system.
- Provide continuous training and education.
Training is imperative for CRM use. However, it should be done slowly and over time. One all-encompassing, comprehensive training session may be viewed as overwhelming and often results in things slipping through the cracks. I like to start with a general overview of the system and then have new users play with it a bit. Once they’ve gotten their feet wet, provide more in-depth trainings on specific aspects of the program and its associated benefits. Training can be presented in-person or through screen shares, videos, webinars and PowerPoint presentations, as well as IT manuals.
- Designate a point person in charge of CRM problems or questions.
Make sure you have one person in charge of CRM training and follow-up questions. Someone having difficulty using your law firm’s CRM will often want immediate help. If they find they can’t get the quick answer they need, they may wash their hands of the system altogether.
- Appoint CRM ambassadors.
Nothing creates better buzz for your CRM system than one lawyer telling another how helpful and useful the CRM has been. Encourage your ambassadors to share pointers and shortcuts as well as success stories where they benefitted from their CRM use.
- Share metrics/statistics behind CRM initiatives to promote its value within the firm.
It is always helpful for members to see how information put into the CRM translates into business development opportunities and contributes to an overall strategic, firmwide approach to client services and focused marketing efforts.
- Never threaten or use scare tactics.
CRM use should have a positive connotation. Forcing use through punishment or threats will only create resentment and discourage buy-in. Instead, continually promote your law firm’s CRM use in a constructive, encouraging manner. With some patience and persistence, you should eventually see an increase in use across your firm.
Do you have your own creative ways to get your law firm to use a CRM system? I would love to hear about them! Leave a comment below or feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or connect on Google+.