Annual Clio 2019 Legal Trends Report has dropped

I spend a ton of time studying the industry that I work with.  That is the Legal Industry.  I listen to podcasts, watch webinars, and try to learn the pain points in my clients' industry.   This report was fascinating!  A big thank you to Joshua Lenon, the lawyer in residence at Clio for a great Legal Trend Report for 2019.  Clio, a practice management app for lawyers, has been doing these trend reports since 2016.   Below are my takeaways from it and my recent trip to meet in person with my client.  

How many hours in a billable day?

The accounting industry was slow to adapt to moving from hourly billing to fixed or value pricing.  At least I thought it was slow until I started to work with attorneys exclusively. An interesting stat from Clio’s Legal Trend annual report of the industry:

Out of an 8 hour. lawyer’s workday, only 2.4 hours are utilized and, out of the 2.4 hours, only 1.9 are billed or invoiced.

What a crazy statistic! This was based upon a survey of over 2,500 attorneys. That certainly doesn’t sound like a sufficient system.

Attorneys feel under-appreciated

And 76% of attorneys say they feel overworked. I would love to know the stat on accountants. I know that my small inner circle of close accountant friends 100% fit this overworked category. A full 68% of attorneys feel under-appreciated.  Is that because of all the mean lawyer jokes?  I really wonder about the appreciated statistic for accountants.  Do you feel appreciated?  

A great reason to niche your firm to working with Attorneys

Some good results from the Legal Trends Report was a full 87% of attorneys surveyed said they want their firms to grow over the next three years. A full 67% want their firms to grow more than a little. 

How does that benefit us, the accounting firm that works with attorneys?  A growing law practice opens the door for accounting professionals to add advisory services. All it takes is the conversation to start.

See the last post regarding KPI's and metrics to track for law firms for more details on that service.

On a recent trip to Cleveland to meet a joint client I have with Sarah Prevost, it gave me one-on-one time to sit with the managing partner of the firm and discuss her firm and growing in the future. Recently, I made a pivot in my business to niche into working with attorneys and made another switch to target that larger firm. You know, the one that would be that great fit for QuickBooks Online Advanced, the mid-market firm.

The legal industry is full of established firms that are using some antiquated desktop-centric software. They have inefficient workflows. Many of these firms have no clue how to make the change to the cloud, let alone what apps to add to stack to automate.

One of the benefits of partnering with another accountant and collaborating two accounting firms to manage these clients is our ability to provide stellar service. We are available to the client more. We can brainstorm on the advisory services and divide and conquer on creating a growth rating and report card for the client to see what they need to do to grow smarter. Many of these firms are growing but nervous about the whole process. They need our help!

If you are interested to learn about adding advisory services for your client, reach out! If you are an attorney or managing partner with a growing firm that is experiencing the overwhelm and exhaustion, we are here to help! Just a phone call away! 239-349-2004.

Lynda Artesani

Lynda Artesani is the president of Artesani Bookkeeping where she uses her expertise and organizational skills to help her clients thrive and become profitable. Lynda is a member of the Intuit Trainer Writer Network. She is an alumni member of the Intuit Advisory Board. Additionally, she is the first Expert Columnist for the QB Community forum. She is also a co-founder in a Facebook group called QB Community Live!