When you’re in court for your cases, meeting with a client, or providing legal counsel, who manages your law firm’s incoming calls? The importance of having a compassionate and capable legal receptionist or legal answering service is not to be underestimated. If your firm needs an excellent receptionist but doesn’t have one, you will either be responsible for answering all incoming calls and scheduling meetings, or you’ll find yourself continually needing to explain the information your receptionist should have taken from them.
In search of a great receptionist for your law firm? Here are the necessary qualities to look out for.
1) Excellent Communication Skills
The receptionist at a law firm is usually the first person with whom potential clients or opposing counsel interact, thus making them the first point of contact that someone will have with your firm. Therefore, your receptionist must have excellent communication skills and be able to handle phone calls flawlessly. The receptionist should be able to speak loudly and clearly and pause when they need the caller to answer. This employee will often greet visitors to the office, so these skills must translate well in person and stay consistent even when juggling multiple tasks. Look for an attentive, energetic candidate who can handle bursts of business with grace.
2) Knowledge of a Variety of Computer Programs
Good receptionists will already know how to run (or can learn very quickly how to use) the latest and greatest office, phone, and legal technology. It’s hard to operate your law firm without technology, so it’s imperative that your law firm receptionist is adept in a variety of programs on the computer, as well as smartphones and tablets. Of course, they would need expertise in Microsoft Office, as well as being able to catch on quickly to operating the office phone, copier, and printer.
3) Organization and Time Management
Often, law firm receptionists have to take messages, file papers, handle the mail, greet visitors, arrange schedules and meetings, and run errands. You need someone who can keep themselves and their tasks organized while completing tasks in a timely manner.
This includes the ability to prioritize and complete tasks for the business and your clients. It also requires them to be dependable and always show up on time. It’s especially important that they understand which tasks are a higher priority, even when they come up out of the blue. Look for candidates who can prioritize conflicting needs and are able to create or follow organizational methods which help your business operate.
4) Legal Experience a Plus
Although a law firm receptionist isn’t allowed to give legal advice, someone with some legal experience, either as a paralegal or even as a criminal justice student, can be really beneficial when it comes to the common questions that potential clients might have. Legal receptionists should also be familiar with terms such as a subpoena, pro se and voir dire. They should understand the difference between legal procedures and know how to create and format pleadings and discovery documents. It’s easier to answer FAQs and do intake when they have some general knowledge of the work at hand.
5) Attention to Detail
Law firm receptionists also handle correspondence, such as letters to attorneys, courts, and/or clients. If your receptionist is writing these letters or proofreading them before sending them out, you want this person to have strong attention to detail. Much like greeting guests or talking on the phone, these letters are also the face of the law firm, and typos could create a wrong impression if not appropriately handled. Attention to detail is crucial in nearly every receptionist task, from scheduling meetings and calendaring deadlines.
How Can a Receptionist Impact Your Law Firm?
A top-tier receptionist or team of receptionists can benefit your firm in many ways. A receptionist can be a powerful asset when it comes to:
- Creating a positive first impression with clients
- Providing exemplary customer service
- Managing workloads
- Increasing efficiency
- Strengthening client relationships
A warm and welcoming receptionist sets the tone for the entire interaction, ensuring a positive experience for the client. A receptionist that is well-trained in customer service can efficiently answer questions and direct clients to the appropriate staff member. Additionally, a receptionist can manage administrative tasks, such as scheduling appointments, managing calendars, and responding to emails and telephone calls, freeing up other staff members to focus on legal work and client needs.
Abby Connect: Your Legal Lifeline – Answering Services That Never Rest!
If you are having trouble finding the right person, then look no further. Consider getting a law firm receptionist from Abby Connect! Not only is this option more affordable, but you don’t have to worry about finding the right person with the right experience and then training this person on your software or on how to take calls. All the training is handled through Abby, and your law firm will have a small dedicated team of 5-10 virtual receptionist!
Your team of Abby receptionists will manage all the typical law firm receptionist duties–answering, transferring, taking messages, doing intake, providing FAQs, and scheduling appointments–sounding like they’re in your office at a fraction of the cost of full-time staff. You get 5+ receptionists for less than you’d pay for one full-time salary!
Through our live answering service, we can ensure that the person acting as your law firm receptionist will have all of these qualities, expert training, high-quality technology, and can be trusted to handle. Get started today!