Some firms really stand out. According to a recent survey by The BTI Consulting Group, there are eight firms that corporate counsel from nearly 300 of the Fortune 1000 say are tops when it comes to client service.

Two firms, Jones Day and Thompson Hine, stand out as “best of the best when it comes to client focus,” according to an article on Law360 about the survey.

So, what do they do right (and what could you do) to make clients VERY happy and rank your firm among the best? Let’s take a look:

  • Going the extra mile and “investing the time to advise on business and legal matters without racking up billable hours” is a significant factor in their success;
  • Keeping clients current on “important legal and business issues facing their companies” off the clock (emphasis mine);
  • Using Google Alerts for information about the client, top executives and competitors, and then “turning the data into organized quarterly presentation for the client for no fee”;
  • Coordinating carefully (Thompson Hine with 50 client service teams) “all of the legal matters the firm is handling for each client” and invites clients to attend and participate in these meetings, again at no charge; and
  • Assigning one partner as the “point person” who is accountable and responsible for all the clients’ matters (sounds like a project manager to me).

One of the other top firms, Fulbright & Jaworski, received a high ranking because of its proactive response to the Deepwater Horizon disaster last spring. It assembled teams in “Houston, New York and London to analyze what kinds of long-term issues their clients would face because of the accident,” including legislative, regulatory and litigation issues at their own expense.

“Client-focus” means focusing on the client. You can do the same to improve your standing with clients.