5 tasks to automate to simplify your client onboarding

1 to 1 clients generally expect a high level of personal service, so you might worry that using automation during your onboarding process will make it less personal. But in fact using automation can free up your time to give more personal attention to each client.

And while you don’t want to automate every client interaction, there are some tasks you can automate in your client onboarding process without sacrificing your personal touch.

1. Booking appointments and appointment reminders

Using appointment scheduling software to book client sessions can drastically reduce the inconvenience of back and forth emails when trying to find a convenient time for you and your client to meet. Many people actually see appointment software as more professional these days because you’re respecting your client’s time and space in their inbox or DMs. You can still include plenty of personality on your appointment page and appointment reminder messages, and you can still choose to send a non-automated message to say how you excited you are to work with them once they’ve booked in with you.

So you don’t have to automate the whole thing, but the actual nitty-gritty of arranging the date and time is best taken care of by software.

You also have the benefit of automating confirmation and reminder messages to be sent before the session so that neither you or your client forget to turn up. And by automating these, you not only have the comfort of knowing they’re being sent without having to think about them, you can add personality but your client doesn’t feel obligated to reply.

In these confirmation and reminder messages you obviously want to include the basics: date, time and location. But you can also include anything else you want them to know before the session: links to anything they should read, requests for thoughts, data or physical things they need to bring to the session, or even just something very ‘you’ as an added reminder that they’ve made a good choice – like a quote or a comment, something to add excitement.

2. Gathering information with client intake forms

Most service providers offer a service where you need information about your client before you start working with them. Whether you need this information before or after they sign up for your service, it will save time for you to automatically send them a form to complete. Some information you might need includes:

    • Personal details

    • Health information

    • Business information

    • Preferences

    • Background

    • Secure login information for systems

By sending a form, your client can gather the information in their own time and you can look over the information in your own time. It also allows you to look across your client forms over a period of time and make use of any patterns in the data. If you’re attracting people with certain backgrounds or preferences, this could be used positively in your marketing. Or maybe you notice that they always have a certain issue that you need to help them resolve before your main service starts – could you create an extra service or a document to help with this?

Not all clients will feel comfortable or confident writing their answers, so you can provide them with alternative options, for example answering questions using voice message or video.

3. Invoicing

Unless you take full payment upfront, you will need a system for invoicing later on in the process. But there’s nothing worse than spending time worrying about money – which clients have paid, who needs chasing and how you’re going to ask for money while maintaining a happy relationship.

So it’s best to automate the whole thing: from first invoice to subsequent invoices, and any chasing emails for unpaid invoices.

Even with automated invoices, you can still write the emails to send along with the invoices in a friendly. You don’t have to send emails that sound like a robot!

If you’re not comfortable with automated invoicing, then the alternative is to create automatic reminders for yourself so that you know when to send your manual invoices. That way the job still gets done, but you don’t have to spend any mental energy keeping track of who needs invoicing and when.

If you’re struggling with invoices, check out 4 Easy Ways To Chase Invoices For Solo Business Owners

4. Contracts

Even if you tailor your services to each client’s unique needs, there are still ways to automate your contracts. Once you have your contract template set up, you can use the information from your client to populate that template and automatically send it to be signed.

Of course, sometimes typos creep in but you don’t want them in contracts, so you can include a step where you check the automatically created contract before approving it for sending to your client.

5. Sending welcome information

Welcome information will vary depending on the service you provide and who you work with. It could cover:

    • Information about how you work with clients

    • Access details to a system you use

    • A timeline of your service

    • FAQs about your service

Once you’ve decided what information you want to share with new clients, you can collate that information in one place and automate sharing it with your clients after they’ve booked in with you.

If you’re new to automation, start by picking one task to automate in your client onboarding process and see how much time you can save.

And if you want to check that you’re not missing anything from your own client management journey, download your Client Management Journey Checklist below.

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