Firms usually makes initial contact with Validatum® through their Managing Partner, Finance Director, COO, Pricing Director, Marketing & BD, Learning & Development or Bid professionals. An initial telephone call or short face-to-face meeting helps us to better understand what your imperatives are, and helps you understand what solutions we might be able to deliver.
Step 1 (Introduction)
Firms initially want to have a general discussion about what their needs are, where they perceive they are on the pricing sophistication journey and what objectives and outcomes they would like to achieve.
Importantly, firms want to gain insight into what we do and how we might be able to help them with their specific pricing needs.
This first phone conversation or meeting with one person will usually progress to a fuller meeting with a broader constituency of the firm's decision makers. We strongly recommend that we are given the opportunity to present to these key stakeholders. Our short presentation averages 40 minutes, followed by 20 minutes of discussion.
At this phase we will also outline some possible implementation and cost options, which will necessarily lack detail so early in the project but give a broad-brush idea of what the firm is looking at.
Our presentation gives your group an initial view of our capabilities and whether we represent a good 'fit'.
From time to time, this 'working group' scenario is not sufficient and firms will require evidence of broad partner level support. This is best achieved by having us present at a firm-wide event such as an annual partners' conference.
Step 2 (Due Dilligence)
We will usually offer to put one or more of the firms' senior leadership in touch with their counterparts in other firms we have worked with. This gives them the opportunity to have a frank discussion and receive an 'unvarnished' version of the other firms' experience of working with us. We feel that this gives a lot of credibility and comfort.
We also use this initial phase to develop a more acute understanding of the firm's pricing objectives and the relationship between pricing and broader strategic goals, alignment of which is critical to the success of a pricing initiative.
Firms often underestimate the commitment required to successfully implement a pricing initiative. Because we have an extremely high success rate, a reputation we want to preserve, we cannot afford to have firms fail to successfully implement the changes.
We therefore work with you to ensure that the commitment is well understood, that there is strong leadership around pricing and that the pricing function will be properly resourced after our initial engagement.
"Validatum® is the world's leading exponent of law firm pricing"
Step 3 (Diagnostics)
Some firms are beginning the pricing journey from 'ground-zero' and aren't sure where to begin, some have made good progress but momentum has stalled and others have had a number of false starts. We will recommend a series of formal and informal strategies to identify the firm's pricing pressure points and current status.
A properly crafted and executed diagnostic and needs analysis provides us with insight into what progress the firm has made or have yet to make on each of the three main pricing 'fronts' - pricing governance, pricing analytics and pricing execution.
In addition, the diagnostic identifies asymmetry between the firms pricing persona as a whole and that of practice teams/departments, individual offices and countries, if applicable.
Armed with these insights, we can then advance a coherent set of recommendations either as a firm-wide initiative or to address specific pricing deficiencies and 'hotspots'.
Step 4 (Execution)
Because we offer a completely customised approach to addressing firms' pricing needs, there is no one-size-fits-all solution. Our diagnostic and needs analysis identifies the major pricing pressure points within the firm as well as opportunities for swift implementation and early quantifiable successes.
The needs of firms with a single regional office are vastly different to those of an international firm operating across multiple jurisdictions and sectors. Between those two polarities, there are an equally large number of execution options that we are able to recommend and deploy. We will discuss the merits of each of these with you.
Some firms choose to immediately effect a firm-wide initiative, whereas others want to take a more cautious and tentative approach. Some have a preference for multidisciplinary execution whereas others want to focus on specific practice areas as discrete projects.
Whatever execution strategy is adopted, a key concern raised by all firms is the issue of maintaining momentum after the initial surge of activity and improvement. We are very conscious of the significance of this and therefore a large section of our materials, resources and ongoing support are dedicated to helping you with this issue.