With murmurs of a recession on the horizon, cautious law firm managers could use a primer on painless ways to help balance sheets shine.
Joyce Brafford, enterprise account executive at ProfitSolv (the parent company of TimeSolv, Rocket Matter, and Cosmo Effects), could have just the right solution.
Brafford discusses this dynamic in a recent webinar, “6 Low-Hanging Ways To Raise Your Bottom Line,” available on demand from Above the Law.
Perhaps the easiest, most “low-hanging” implementation of them all is introducing electronic billing — but not everyone is on board.
Why Do Law Firms Steer Clear of Automatic Billing?
“Electronic payments for your clients matter a tremendous amount,” Brafford says. “They’re already paying their bills online, they have a credit card in their wallet right now.”
According to Brafford, there are two primary roadblocks that typically stop firms from using an electronic payment system: processing fees and confusion around set-up and compliance issues.
Most, if not all, electronic payment systems will charge somewhere around 2 to 3 percent in fees for every transaction. This might make electronic payment systems seem counterintuitive — after all, why would you want to pay to get paid?
The gains made from implementing an electronic system, however, far outweigh any fee-associated costs thanks to the convenience of electronic payments, Brafford says, adding: “If you think about the total amount you will be able to collect, in almost every scenario, it totally offsets that processing fee.”
“When you adopt electronic payment methods, not only in almost every case do you have increased revenue collection, you also have an improved client experience,” she adds.
“You have improved accounting transparency because if you use one of the solutions we’re talking about, that credit card payment will tie directly back to the invoice. It will be marked within your practice management solution as paid. You’ll have improved accounting and accuracy with less reconciliation.”
When it comes to set-up and compliance, those new to electronic billing might ask themselves questions like: “How do I integrate this with my solution?”
“Do I have to have multiple providers? What happens if there’s a clawback or a chargeback or someone disputes a payment? How do I manage that in my system? How do I manage write-offs?”
Fortunately, according to Brafford, “all of that can be answered within your practice management system or with a separate legal-specific credit card processor.”
Fill out the form below to hear more about electronic billing and five other easy-to-implement steps your firm should consider.