You know better than anyone: being a professional service company is a grind. A hustle. It’s all about making human connections and building relationships for the future. Chances are you’re rarely at your desk; you’re pounding pavement and chasing the next lead. But how can you get more strategic while keeping this same pace?
The solution: We’ve analyzed trends on the horizon for professional services so you don’t have to. Take a look at what’s coming down the road so you can jump on these waves without losing momentum on new deals.
Here’s what we’ll cover today:
- What are professional services?
- 8 professional service trends for 2022
- 1 easy way to stay on-trend this year
But first: what are professional services?
Professional services refer to businesses that sell knowledge and experience rather than tangible goods. These companies could be either B2B (business to business) or B2C (business to consumer) in their focus.
Some examples of professional services are:
- Legal services
- Financial planning
- Event planning
And this is just to name a few.
8 professional services trends for 2022
Tracking industry trends is particularly important for professional services firms because understanding those trends helps firms align more closely with the ever-evolving needs and expectations of clients. Here are just a few trends to put on your radar.
Trend 1. Relationships will remain a priority
Remote work and hybrid work environments aren’t going anywhere. For professional services firms, this represents a challenge. Providers must actively build and maintain collaborative relationships with vendors digitally. Providing high-quality services to customers will entail building a solid digital infrastructure for communication with customers and collaboration with vendors.
RingCentral provides professional services firms with an all-in-one communications platform that enables efficient communication and collaboration via SMS message, video, and phone—all in one app:
This kind of all-in-one solution is an easy way to nurture relationships and keep your team, and all of your customer touches, in the same place.
Trend 2. Sector growth will continue at a rapid pace
The professional services market is expected to grow at a CAGR (compound annual growth rate) of 9.1% to nearly $8,082.4 billion this year. Some of the most in-demand professional services are around B2B services including; legal, accounting, engineering, architecture, marketing and technology consulting to name just a few -. More than half of all projects are expected to come from small businesses, which means you want to make sure your company is prepared to scale efficiently.
RingCentral helps professional services firms scale efficiently by integrating with your favorite productivity tools, along with hundreds of other popular apps.
Trend 3. Professional services will experience a digital transformation
50% of professional services CFOs say they plan to accelerate digitalization, automation, and other new ways of working, among other remote work strategies.
Despite the shift to digital, we still expect the top three needs for 2022 and beyond to remain constant: project management, improved collaboration tools, and increased productivity.
To keep up with this age of digital transformation, RingCentral offers a suite of all-in-one software that allows for better communication and collaboration across your entire organization.
One benefit we’ve seen that professional services companies who partner with RingCentral receive are improved customer satisfaction rates. Compared to other industry peers, we see RingCentral partners’ NPS (net promoter score) increase by nearly 30 points on average, which shows that our customers are more likely to recommend us to a colleague.
Trend 4. Data-driven decision making will significantly influence company growth
Better data analytics allow for more informed, less risky decisions. That includes:
- Getting real-time insights into operations
- Understanding the customer better and deepening customized engagements
- Deciphering trends to make changes to business models
For example: RingCentral’s CRM integrations enable 24/7 access to customer records from any device. Here’s how RingCentral for Salesforce looks. Dial directly within Salesforce from your business phone, so you never miss any call data:
With these insights, your company will be able to grow faster than ever before. We recommend creating reliable systems around data management that are scalable and secure, yet easy to use.
Trend 5. Customer service will become hyper-competitive
Only 34% of professional service firms feel they are currently meeting their customers’ demands adequately. The continued evolution of the experience economy exerts pressure on professional services firms to differentiate themselves from competitors with the level of customer service they provide. But providing hyper-competitive customer service is easier said than done.
RingCentral takes customer service to the next level. With RingCentral’s advanced call routing, clients can engage with the right person on the first try via their channel of choice, regardless of call volume. Exchange confidential client and partner data across secure, encrypted collaboration channels with the mobile app, including video chat functionality for live interactions.
Trend 6. The need for workflow automation will increase
Employees jump between different applications over 1,100 times a day, lowering productivity and creating communication headaches. However, with RingCentral’s all-in-one app, you can automate your workflows and improve overall collaboration.
Plus, our prebuilt (and customizable) integrations let you connect your favorite business apps with RingCentral. Sync your Google Docs for easy file sharing, plug us into your existing CRM to track customer journeys, or even build your own integrations. These automations will streamline workflows and cut down on the time-suck that is toggling.
And if you’re ready for even more hands-off workflows, RingCentral Engage Digital provides an all-in-one, omnichannel contact center so you can provide top-knotch customer service via phone, email, text, and even social media:
Trend 7. Professional services will need to offer 24/7 customer service
Customers today expect to be able to reach you anytime, on their platform of choice. This could mean phone support, social media, self-service options, live chat, and more.
You need a solution that offers advanced call routing, IVR, and web-based support, including a chatbot, live chat, FAQ, digital knowledge base, and more. RingCentral integrates all of these services into your suite for a seamless customer experience.
Trend 8. Contact centers will be a critical tool for recruitment
The Great Resignation continues, making it necessary for professional services firms to give special attention to recruitment.
Your contact center is no longer for sales only. You can streamline your hiring experience and find the perfect qualified candidate using outbound calling. Finding and hiring new talent should be just as seamless as every other aspect of your business. Using RingCentral’s contact center reporting, you’ll be able to track your candidate pipeline in real time.
1 easy way to stay on trend this year: Get on the cloud
RingCentral helps professional services firms to become connected agencies by enabling:
- Improved employee collaboration with any time, anywhere access
- Increased operational efficiency
- Improved client experience
According to our 2021 Customer Success Metrics survey of RingCentral customers, cloud communications increases mobility, productivity and customer satisfaction. A platform like RingCentral is even shown to decrease the need for in-person meetings:
Are you ready to see results like this for your professional services firm? Request a demo of RingCentral’s solution for professional services today.
Originally published Feb 18, 2022