Does quality guarantee a good customer experience?
April 24, 2018
The marketing messages of companies offering professional services tend to emphasize quality, and law firms might just be frontrunners when it comes to this. We are of a higher quality, the best, the most experienced, and many other superlatives. How is a client supposed to find the law firm that is right for them from this group?
In fact, experts tend to think about quality as something that can be measured by the technical standards in their own sector. An engineer’s calculations, an architect’s drawings, and a lawyer’s legal briefs are high quality if the prophets in their own sector give a nod.
Technical quality is certainly important. Clients fundamentally assume that the experts know what they are doing. So is it worthwhile to tout the issue any further? In the client’s world, quality is a comprehensive experience, i.e. it is much more than a brilliant technical performance by the expert.
Quality is also a feeling
Clients want solutions that suit their own needs, so quality is specific both to the client and to the case. It is essential to identify the needs of the client’s business and the expectations of the contact person. Quality is really about adaptation to the client’s expectations. If the client wants a quickly compiled, business-oriented document written in plain language, then they’ll be disappointed by the refined, multi-page technical diamond that took a long time to prepare – but your colleagues might admire the final product.
Efficiency produces quality. It’s essential to optimize quality to a level the client is happy with without having to spend an unreasonable amount of time to produce the service. If an expert’s fee is time-based, the risk of a difference of opinion between the service provider and the client increases.
Clients enjoy a good service experience. Everyone knows what it feels like to get lousy service in a restaurant noted for its delicious food. The way the client feels is the client’s truth – and it leaves the strongest impression about quality. Quality is also a good feeling.
Unnecessary polishing of diamonds
So technical quality alone doesn’t guarantee a good client experience. At the Lawyer Day event in January, I listened with interest to a presentation by a Swedish lawyer who said that legal quality comes above everything else at his office. Sitting in the audience, the general counsel from a major company summed up my thought with his question to the speaker: ”Have you ever considered good enough?”