(Posted on 03/07/11)
Did you know that solicitors rank third on a list of the most trustworthy professions? It's true. YouGov conducted survey in June that included participants ranking a number of professions in terms of how well they trust that profession and those who define it. Doctors and teachers were ranked one and two respectively and lawyers came in right behind those two. Could it be efforts in recent years by the industry as a whole are beginning to come full circle? The vast majority of the best solicitors in the UK have long since worked to ensure ethics and responsibility were part of their overall mission. As it turns out, the survey goes on to say 84% of those who participated and who have used a solicitor's services in the past year were either "satisfied" or "very satisfied".
Family solicitors who write wills have the highest numbers of customer satisfaction. A full 90% of those clients say they were satisfied. On the other end of the spectrum, the lower rankings were courtesy of accident solicitors, who scored 70% in terms of satisfaction.
The poll also says 31% of the general public has had a use for solicitors in the past two years.
While this is certainly good news for the profession as a whole, the report also highlighted areas where consumers say there remains work to be done. Coming in number one is the sometimes lack of commitment in maintaining communication. Clients say this is their biggest complaint and the one area they wish law firms would improve. Besides communication, consumers also say they wish the work was completed in a more timely fashion. And if you're worried whether or not your clients would come to you with any complaints they have, you should know 51% say they'd have no problem confronting their law firms, though only 13% of those who were dissatisfied actually did complain.
Finally, solicitors are chosen primarily by consumers on the advice of those who have reported a good experience. Referrals and/or family and friends were considered reliable sources too. A solicitor's reputation is an important factor; 18% say a bad reputation will steer a potential client elsewhere.
The findings will be published in the Consumer Impact Report, expected to be released in early July.