When working in your divorce law business each day, does it feel that everything is following a specific and consistent process? Alternatively, do you get the feeling that, no matter how diligent you are, each task you and your family law colleagues perform takes a random course?

If you are leaning toward the latter then one of the reasons could be the lack of standard operating procedures or SOPs. SOPs can be found in various legal businesses and law organisations across the world, and they have been proven to benefit them all in many ways.

The simplest definition of SOPs is that they are documents that outline the specific process and the steps that needed be taken to complete a given legal task. SOPs are followed by everyone within the business and are especially useful for new legal employees or graduates in learning how specific tasks are completed successfully.

You can create an SOP for anything you choose to, and it can range from the simplest tasks to the most complex. An SOP can also take many forms with the most common being:

To create an SOP, you should first seek input from those you work with. Then, create an outline of the SOP, before testing it and amending it based on the test run. Each SOP should also have a result that the task produces, and invariably this will be the title of the SOP. Using SOPs creates several benefits for your divorce lawyers business, with some examples of these shown below.

Enhanced Client Experience: With SOPs guiding what everyone in your divorce lawyers business does, it must surely follow that your clients receive better levels of service. Examples include enquires answered within a set timeframe, onboarding of clients following a consistent process, and communications with clients created in a format everyone in your office is familiar with.

Greater Productivity: If everyone in your business knows exactly what the procedure for each task is, or at the very least, where they can check the SOP outlining how the task should be done, it should create greater productivity within your office. There will also be less wasted time, especially from staff not having to redo tasks due to the lack of a standard process for it.

Increased Accountability: It is very easy for an employee to blame their error on them never being shown what to do, or that they assumed that was how it should be done. An SOP removes excuses like those and instead makes everyone, including yourself, accountable as the SOPs outline exactly what procedures exist within your family lawyers business.

Quicker Resolution Of Problems: We should point out that the mere existence of SOPs does not mean that there will never be problems within your office. However, what they will do for you is provide a clearer view of how specific problems can be resolved. In addition, if an issue occurs and no current SOP relates to it, then you can either create a new SOP or amend an existing one.

Fewer Disputes Amongst Colleagues: With SOPs outlining exactly how tasks should be advanced and completed it reduces the likelihood of disputes arising between colleagues within your office. No longer will a task’s successful completion be in question, where one person can subjectively claim it is not satisfactorily completed. Instead, referral to the relevant SOP can objectively confirm if it has or not.