The Ultimate Intake Machine with Kelsey Bratcher

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Are you looking for a way to automate your intake system? Do you use various tools within your firm? In this podcast episode, Kelsey Bratcher from Hired Gun Solutions shares a presentation on automation intake and the evolution of the process.

The intake process began with a simple piece of paper. When someone called a firm, a receptionist or administrator would write their name and number down on a piece of paper. This would then get passed to the attorney. In the legal field today, there are many tools and softwares that are used to automate the intake process, making it more efficient and faster. The ideal intake system will get a client on board in one call, without having to bother with scheduling an appointment.

You want a level of consistency in the intake process. The same questions should be asked, the same information collected and the handoff of information should be right after everything is collected. This will ensure every client is treated the same and nothing is left out for the attorneys. Kelsey emphasizes the need to have a centralized system. If a firm is tracking calls and messages, scheduling meetings and has a marketing channel, all of this needs to be in one place or within one software.

Take a listen!

Episode Highlights:

  • 1:05 Kelsey Bratcher shares the fundamentals of the ultimate intake system
  • 3:46 The need for consistency in how calls are handled
  • 6:38 Centralizing information in one place
  • 8:43 The importance of staying organized in the intake process
  • 9:36 Easy and real-time access to reports and metrics


🎥 Watch the full video on YouTube here.

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Transcripts: The Ultimate Intake Machine with Kelsey Bratcher

Speaker 1 (00:00:00) - In today's episode, we're sharing a presentation from Max Lakhan 2022. Keep listening to hear Kelsey Bratcher as we share his talk, The Ultimate Intake Machine. You can also head to the maximum layer YouTube channel to watch the full video. Let's get to it.

Speaker 2 (00:00:15) - Run your law firm the right way. The right way. This is the Maximum lawyer podcast podcast. Your hosts, Jim Hacking and Tyson Metrics. Let's partner up and maximize your firm. Welcome to the show.

Speaker 3 (00:00:38) - So, yeah, like I was saying, I'm Kelsey Bratcher, my company's hired gun solutions. I've been working with different small business owners for the past 14 years. As he said, one of the things I want to point out is there's a gentleman, a house painter that kind of brought me into the world of automation and which ended up connecting me with a guy that we all know, and that's Mr. Jim Hacking. I want to take a moment to thank both Tyson and Jim for being so generous as to letting me use their stage to talk about automation intake.

Speaker 3 (00:01:05) - For the past three years or so. Up until recently, I've been living in an RV, traveling in the country and helping people automate different systems and processes in their business. This is a photo of me and my family, my wife and my youngest daughter over at Mount Rushmore with a Teddy Roosevelt lookalike. The reason I share this stuff with you is that all the processes that I've created for my businesses and for my clients has been gone to allow me to be able to operate from the road continuously for three years during Covid and all that kind of stuff. And so I want to make sure that some of those things are kind of explained. So the first thing we want to talk about with the ultimate intake system, we have to go and talk about the first intake system. The main thing you're going to think about is the beauty in its simplicity. And that first intake system is just a piece of paper. So all the crazy tools and everything that we've been talking about and we just focus on what a piece of paper and what an intake system based on this might look like.

Speaker 3 (00:02:03) - What if your phone rings and you have someone on the phone, you write their name on it and you write down their phone number and you go through some of the stuff that Russ and Gary had been talking about. And then when you have to transfer this information to attorney, either because there's a meeting that you're scheduling or you're physically transferring it, you could take this piece of paper and walk over to another person and hand it to him, and they have everything that they need to know. But since then, intake process has started to look more like this. And so you have, I don't know at any given time, a dozen or so different tools that have to work together perfectly in conjunction with your team. And it just gets kind of messy. And so one of the things I want to break down is you can't get away from this today unless you go back to using paper. Some of these tools are going to be involved no matter how you look at it. Some of you have already chosen different tools.

Speaker 3 (00:02:51) - And we're going to talk about how those things can interact together. But this is not an abnormal tech stack that I've encountered. I mean, we have some redundancy here, but you can kind of get an idea. So we want to talk about the fundamentals of the ultimate intake system. And Gary's touched on this. If you think about the conversation that Russ just went over, the first thing we want to focus on is that our process needs to be one call able. What this means is that if a person calls your office that you can take them for beginning to end. Not every single time, but from beginning to end and be able to sign a new client without them having to waste time scheduling and appointments, postponing them. You want any delays in the process to be client facing more than your own process, right? Like telling somebody that you have to set up an appointment with them a week from now is going to cause introduce a delay that you've now imposed on the client when they would be ready to go.

Speaker 3 (00:03:46) - An example of this, I was just at a car dealership last week. I stopped in randomly to get a price on a truck that I have and I was able to talk to a salesperson, get a quote from my truck and buy a new car in less than an hour at a car dealership Like we're going through financing everything. And I was they had a whole crazy system in place for doing that. But it's I've never gone through a car dealership in an hour. And so one of the things that reminded me of this presentation is that that one call close will process. I was ready to go buy a car and get through everything. And you have people calling your office. Not everybody, but most people that are going to call through will accept the pace in which you want them to operate at. So why not allow that to be as fast as possible? We also want to look at keeping everything as repeatable and as clean as possible. It creates confusion for your clients. If every single person that calls in is treated differently, how can you establish some kind of standardization from the people that are answering your phone, whether it's reception or Smith or whatever you got going? On how that handoff takes place with your intake team and if you have any attorney or other type of sales function in the process.

Speaker 3 (00:04:52) - Like ideally that needs to operate where 80, 90, 95% of the time it's always the same. And the one thing we want to do as well is if you look at the piece of paper, it's very easy to collect the information that you want from a PNC, step by step, literally following each field all the way through the process. And it takes hardly any effort when we introduce a lot of the technology. These tools kind of like force somebody to like skip around, open the windows, click around all these different places, and it creates kind of like a big pain in the ass. It causes a lot of confusion, especially if you have older people on your team. They might have issues with like how all these different tech tools work together, and so you want to create it and silo it as much as possible. Next step we're going to be looking at is I'm going to combine both of these together because multiple. It's kind of unavoidable. You're going to have a phone system, you're going to have a CRM, you're going to have a file, a case management system.

Speaker 3 (00:05:44) - You might have a different application use for text messaging. And so it's impossible to get away from that. So we want to centralize the information into one place, especially during intake. So if you're going to be communicating with the client, either via your phone or via texting, ideally all the records of that information would exist in one place so that you can review what's going on. This also helps you understand any of the KPIs or metrics that you're going to be looking at. I mentioned earlier the one call close. We want to be able to shrink and expand the process based on how the client will be interacting. So like if I'm a lazy client and I don't want to meet with you because I'm going on vacation two weeks from now, that's when the appointment should be. If I can't meet sooner, right, If I'm ready to go now, I got my credit card out or I was just in an accident. I need to sign an agreement. Get that to me as fast as I possibly can, and I'm ready to go.

Speaker 3 (00:06:38) - And then the last thing we've all learned is that it needs to be 100% remote. There's no reason why you physically need to be present in your office or have anyone be physically present in your office to be able to conduct this going on. You're going to have people in other countries, other states that participate in your intake process. And therefore we want to focus on how do we create the piece of paper situation when the person just talked to the client is in a completely another state. So we're going to talk about now is the components of what these intake machines look like. So the first thing we're going to talk about is like marketing referrals and like that is a piece of intake. Like I've worked with another attorneys at this time where I see people are always referring in and you are continuously referring out. You have friends, colleagues, cases that you might receive some type of cut on and being able to track and how that interacts throughout the intake process. The other piece of missing is that I often find missing is the attribution that comes from, let's say like someone clicks on a Google ad and arrives on your website and knowing which ad that that created.

Speaker 3 (00:07:37) - And then ultimately, if somebody is closing a week later, how do you provide how do you count that sale against that ad spin that you just did that flows right into call tracking, which would be the next piece? The marketing channel is that it helps you identify where that's going to be coming from. And a lot of people are in this room, probably are on call rail or call tracking metrics. And then the next piece is like, how does okay, if you're going to track that a call came in your phone system and scheduling tools and messaging needs to all be in alignment. So a lot of folks are using the RingCentral just call, you have email marketing that it's going to be going out for sending automated communications and then ultimately scheduling links. So I want to talk about one quick thing that came up that I didn't have in my presentation when I first went through this, but Russ and Gary both talked about the speed component. So if you get a lead on your website, the amount of time that it takes for you to reach out to them, at the minimum, you need to have an email that goes out one step better is an email and a text message provided that you've adequately gained permission to text message somebody.

Speaker 3 (00:08:43) - And the third step would be to automatically have that person get called. So every lead that you get from a web form, whether it's on your website, a Facebook lead ad, et cetera, that it sets in motion the process for that person automatically get communicated from you. So the next piece is we have an organization and efficiency and the beauty of the piece of paper example that we just talked about is that it can it physically exists. You can hand it from one person to another. It can be stuffed in a folder and it allows you to just transport this piece of information. We want to talk about The piece of paper example is going to give you the ability to stay organized very easily because you can't get rid of that thing. So how do we create that? We need a proper core and we need to be able to jam everything all into that proper core and we'll go over that in a minute. So the next pieces are if you're going to have reports and metrics, I believe that they should be easy and in real time.

Speaker 3 (00:09:36) - And you can pull them up from your phone right now if you wanted to. When a key and critical piece of your intake process is typically circulated around document signing. I think Gary mentioned that it needs to be a 1 or 2 page type of deal. Ideally, you can get that into the hands of your prospects immediately. Now getting paid piece is probably the trickiest piece. Not all of you are going to be getting paid physically up front or during the getting started with a new client. And so if it doesn't apply to you, we're going to talk about that. But more or less, the getting paid piece is the final step of the intake process because if they just signed a representation agreement and they owe you $5,000 to get started, we want to make that process. As soon as they sign that, they're getting asked to pay and your process needs to reflect that. So we're going to talk about what are some of the the viable core options that you can use to build your framework to to start encompassing some of these types of steps.

Speaker 3 (00:10:26) - So you have a lot of different combinations and you can have all kinds of different combinations of these. But the first off the top, we're going to talk about Clio Grow plus manage. If you're using these tool tools together, there's a. Big infrastructure for how you can start to bolt these things together. Like if you have a new contact created in Clio Grow, you can use that as part of the process for walking somebody through. The next piece is lead document and File Vine. Those kind of work hand to hand together. They don't have to be used together, but they usually are. Lymphatics is out there, but you probably need some other stuff to be able to do that. I know there's some my case users in here. There are some challenges with that. But if you're using my case, you can start to implement some of the different things that we talked about and of course, custom solutions. And my favorite is Pipedrive at the moment. So with Pipedrive, it is not a legal software.

Speaker 3 (00:11:14) - It is a sales tool that's built for small sales organizations to automate and systematize their sales. And so I like to bolt it on to whatever case management system people have. So the next piece I want to get into is going to be kind of like what the future of this is going to look like. So I've been working with a bunch of different attorneys for the past since basically since before Covid started. Jim had me on the podcast a couple of times, and I've been since introduced to many of you. I've been on Max Law a couple of times and getting through the public speaking component being a little nervous. But I'm actually going to be creating a new company and it's going to be a software company called Automator. We're basically going to take a lot of this fancy crap that we've just jammed and jam it all together into one place so you don't have to learn 50 different tools and try to connect them all together. Now, there's no timeline on this, so I'm just making the announcement today. All right.

Speaker 3 (00:12:05) - I think I'm just about on time here. Five seconds left. Thank you very much. And I hope that this is helpful.

Speaker 2 (00:12:15) - Thanks for listening to the Maximum Lawyer podcast. Stay in contact with your hosts and to access more content. Go to maximum lawyer.com. Have a great week and catch you next time.

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