For many of our clients in all areas of law, finance is the imperative and long term strategic thinking is a luxury.
Therefore, we have a very clear 90 Day Finance Programme suitable for all firms practicing the law - finance oriented, focusing first on cash manaegement and delivering rapid results.
Our experience is that, while all clients’ circumstances differ, the most effective order of priorities is:
• Cash flow
• Cost structure
• Income growth
Cash Management - Overdraft Reduction - Stress Reduction
One of the main causes of stress among partners is pressure on the overdraft. Our focus on cash management, unlocking working capital from the firm’s debtors and Work in Progress relieves that pressure.
By so doing, the range of choices available to the partners is expanded, and the firm’s management has significantly more room for manoeuvre when it comes to making major decisions.
Tackling Costs and Management Information
Many firms respond to declining profits by immediately cutting costs. Unfortunately, knee-jerk reactions are rarely in the business’s best interests. Instead, even in such an intensely competitive market as the law, finance initiatives and cost reduction should be undertaken in a considered manner, focusing on those areas where waste is high and the payback will be largest.
Therefore, management information is fundamental. Law firm management information is often dense and even impenetrable. We produce focused, targeted management information to facilitate informed decisions.
Furthermore, some of the most significant cost reductions can be achieved through fairly modest investment, often in IT related areas. But even though these investments can pay back very rapidly, they cannot be considered if the cash is not available.
Growing the Top Line
For many firms the biggest challenge is a squeeze on revenues, as clients become more selective and the market becomes more competitive. However, revenue growth is something that can only be considered once the firm is on a sound financial footing.
By focusing on cash flow first, the range of choices is not only expanded, but a virtuous cycle is created. Cash generated can then be used to invest in business development and revenue growth activities that really do promote the long term health of the firm.
Unfortunately, even the most strongly managed firms can have difficulty turning a decision into results. Three obstacles typically hinder change in law firms:
• The partners do not “buy in” to the proposed solution – in fact, they opt out and ensure that the decision can be taken in theory but the results will not occur in practice
• The non-lawyers are not listened to and do not have the authority to enforce decisions even when the partners have agreed on a course of action
• Firms do not have the resources, the skill sets and the experience available to implement change.
Engaging Wilkinson Read & Partners allows you to overcome all of these obstacles.
Our interviews and workshops are specifically aimed at securing partner “buy in” to our project, and at discovering the underlying issues within the partnership that may be holding your business back.
As specialist consultants to the legal profession, our professional reputation relies on making the implementation count. Our focus is always on results, regardless of partnership politics.
And having worked with law firms for the past eighteen years, our experience and expertise in helping partners to confront the unique business challenges of running a law firm in the 21st Century is unrivalled in the UK.
If you would like a conversation about how we can help you achieve your own unique objectives, please contact us.