Dear advisors

The professional office sector is recovering after the pandemic. This is indicated by the Barometer of Professional Firms 2022produced by Dear advisors half-yearly. “The conclusion is that we are coming out of a complicated time like the pandemic,” he explains. Jordy Amado, CEO of the company. “Most of the sector – mainly tax, labor and accounting consultancy – has performed very well and has been able to respond to exceptional conditions. Despite the difficulties, the figures came out quite well.”

43.5% of the companies surveyed state that they have maintained their sales in 2021, while 25.5% have grown between 6 and 15%. In addition, 22.1% were able to acquire customers in the past year, while 27.5% were able to maintain the numbers of the previous year. These are more modest data than those of 2019, the year before the pandemic, but they show that the sector is regaining the importance it deserves, “especially around entrepreneurs whose efforts and procedures we help”, explain.

The outlook is “moderately optimistic, with favorable forecasts suggesting that, in the worst case scenario, 2022 will be the same or better,” Amado said. “However, at the economic and situation level, the forecasts are less optimistic, even moderately pessimistic, indicating greater confidence in the future of the sector than at the economic level or in relation to the measures taken by the government recently.”

innovation lever

Innovation has been one of the main keys to surviving and continuing to grow despite the pandemic. In this context, the barometer shows how more than half of the law firms use it cloud computingwhile 83.1% used video conferencing tools to serve their clients in 2021.

The automation of production processes is another important lever for innovation and adaptation to new needs, thanks to tools that “allow, for example, the creation of accounts thanks to computer programs for invoice recognition and automatic accounting preparation”. Thus, 41.2% of offices have a CRM for customers, while 9.6% are in the process of using it; and 31.3% already have an employee portal to automate tasks like payroll or internal communications.

Considering that the professional law firm sector helps thousands of SMEs in their daily work, this is a segment where adapting to new post-pandemic trends has become particularly relevant. That’s how Amado views it The firms “were up to the task and were able to deliver all of their services remotely with absolute efficiency. It was a rediscovery that served to demonstrate the solidity and systematic work processes of the industry.”

“In the last two years,” he continues, “we have shown all the investments we are making to adapt all processes and services to the online channel: customer portals, employee portals, accounting… All of this has accelerated, each one Times companies invest more in technology that must be applied without losing the personal treatment of the customer”.

Although the pandemic appears to be striking its final blows, Amado Consultores warn: “In a way, this trend will continue through a hybrid formula for years to come. The authorities very much assumed that the future would pass here. It was unthinkable that all income and tax campaigns could be done remotely without having contact with the client…”

In an environment of information overload, the way firms engage with their customers has also changed, leading to a reduction in face-to-face meetings and an increase in the online channel for conducting their procedures, particularly email and customer portals . A circumstance that does not contradict the fact that the consultant remains the point of reference for entrepreneurs. “The trust and credibility factor hasn’t been lost, although some argue that everything can be found on the internet,” explains Amado.

The challenge of talent management

In addition to digital transformation and process automation, law firms face another important challenge: talent management in their own organizations. In this sense, Amado explains that “identifying and retaining talent is becoming increasingly important in an environment where management guidelines no longer work”.

Faced with this situation, “law firms need to start being creative and flexible to allow the worker to balance work and life. Fifteen years ago it was rare to find someone who left the office to “find themselves”. Today there are more and more companies that suffer from these resignations because of their conditions, so we have to reinvent the way we lead professionals, who are talented people looking for projects that excite them,” says the general director of Amado Consultores, who ends it with a warning: “The new generations are looking for these types of jobs, so small and medium-sized businesses will have to adapt or face difficulties in the future.”

Prodespachos and entrepreneurs seek innovation in the sector

For the second consecutive year, Prodespachos – the oldest directory of professional firms in Spain dependent on Amado Consultores – and Emprendedores magazine join forces to create the Most Innovative Professional Company Award. After the success of the first edition, where the award went to Querol Assessors, In 2022, the focus will be “on real and concrete innovations, more in a service or product within the variety of services that a company can offer than in a company in general, which is what we wanted to assess in the first edition of the award,” he explains Gloria molesresponsible for Prodespachos.

Amado Consultores, Law Firms, Innovation, Legaltech