We acknowledge a legitimate wish of client to greater value, benefits, efficiency and certainty. In this exercice, e².law is empowered by an openness to original ways of doing things, to meet the client legitimate expectations in 2020.
Meeting the clients legitimate expectations starts with an appropriate identification of the the services they need. Therefore, we aim at defining them as much as possible in a “project definition” at the outset of our intervention. This document outlines where the value and the perception are (time, type of delivery, level of details contained in a memo, level of self intervention for filling models or retrieving legal information from agreed sources,…) and the envisaged budget. In function thereof, the best approach and options are proposed.
This allows for focussing our efforts on the services the clients need and to offer them to pay the appropate price.
This project definition is usually in a document of the same name or in an information sheet attached to the contract signed by our client (called Engagement letter). This customer information sheet is likely to be updated according to the evolution of the customer relationship.
Blended rates, volume or value based billing, fixed pricing and reward billing are available for our clients when specific factors are met. These factors include the following one:
- A project definition is doable and, if the circumstances require so, the client is willing to pay for it.
- Our clients commit to participate in the effort to ensure collective efficiency and organization of legal service delivery for instance by acknowledging and respecting agreed processes.
- Our client offers us to build a lasting relationship and invests in it ;
- Our client commits to fully respect the agreement taken on the payment plans, including when appropriate, for instance, for pricing plans, timely payment of any sum due.
- We believe that, for the regarded services, an alternative pricing mechanism can help the our customer to achieve success.
- The client qualifies for one of our specific services packs, such as for example our start up program.
- The client offers us to strengthen our competences on a sector targeted by our development strategy.
In parallel, Throughout the handling of a case, we encourage the client’s knowledge of and respect for the processes of the firm and a constant understanding of the respective “to-do’s” and “next steps”. We ensure that a planning process is set up that respects the actual deadlines.
The modern law firm can be of variable geometry. Our small team has the required expertise for onboarding people, and pilot a bigger project.
The people working on files frequently exceed the members of the firm mentioned on the people’s page, chosen for their expertise in the firm’s values.
Depending on the needs of each case, we are able to mobilize interdisciplinary teams with variable geometry.
This is the case, for example, in particular crossborder cases, where the intervention of a foreign lawyer is necessary, as well as in cases requiring, even at national level, a particular competence that can be more quickly mobilised from specialised external lawyers or from other professions.
Our firm has the required expertise and experience to coordinate other lawyers interventions, when the handling of a case can benefit from their specialities. We implement it in particular for customers with whom we know well and with whom we have a permanent relationship.
Correspondingly, we can participate in other firms’ s project, to support their efforts in servicing their customers.
The strength of our network
Our firm maintains relationships with other lawyers, in Belgium and abroad, with whom we work on our cases on an ad hoc or permanent basis.
In Belgium, we work with lawyers specialising in specialised matters in administrative law, social law, tax law, criminal law and intellectual property law. Abroad, we have number of corresponding firms or individuals avilable to help us to redirect us to the right legal service provider.
Our firm also maintains relationships with other non-legal professions, such as auditors or chartered accountants.
We have chosen not to formalize these relationships by belonging to an alliance of law firms, because we prefer to privilege, in addition to the quality of personal relationships over the membership of lawyers in a firm, the search for the most specialized skills. We also believe that the interest of an alliance of lawyers who reside in the adaptation of a given working method can also be regulated on an ad hoc basis.
In a more complex and globalised business environment, with a geographically diverse workforce, sophisticated clients demand, demand a firm that is responsive
As regards time, our approach to responsiveness is a balancing between your imperative and ours. This approach is a mix between the following items:
- We help you by delivering a timely advice.
- We help you to sort your legal priorities, by making a useful agenda.
- We adapt our pricing to reward you when you organise your priorities correctly,
- We help you develop an asynchronic methodology, allowing us to work on different time slot.
- Classically, by working very hard against the deadlines, when this is required.
A tailormade approach requires to be specific as to the vehicle and the style used to convey legal messages. We can select the vehicle and the style that corresponds the most to a specific client or the handling a of case, in view of factors such as profiles of the addressee, need for the advice to be seen later and shared with other parties. Defining the delivery method maximizes the correct allocation of resources on a project.
They are a mix of specific management practices (such as delivering the right level of details, a visual to illustrate or compare legal concepts , posting a lawyer inhouse a number of days per months, enabling the client to do part of the work himself) and technology- or know-how- based techniques (such as video, e-learning, or reference to our topic database). Both are innovative in that their application to the services performed of a lawyer result in a innovative client experience, going beyond the scope of what mainstream service providers do.
These delivery methods are more than a matter of communication, seen as the final output. The production of the legal advice is impacted as well. For instance, our methods include visual thinking, applied to structuring legal thoughts and to support discussions around them.
The selection of the appropriate delivery method is connected with the reflection on the added value and correspondingly to our fee arrangements. There are examples where use of a specific technology can increase efficiency and reduce costs, for instance where we can easily refer clients to prexisting and standardized material, deliver a screen recording of a contract, or produce a visual drawing synthetizing a legal issue instead of writing a memo. There are examples where they can help us to move quickly and better coordinate with clients. They never compromise quality of services.