Dentons : Running the clock

A useful addition to contact information could be managed better.

click to view

The feature

Dentons, ‘headquarterless’ global law firm, provides a useful addition to contact information in its professionals’ profiles.

Dentons' new website includes a searchable staff directory in its primary navigation, under the section heading Our professionals. Search results include an initial listing with name, photograph, position and an office telephone number and e-mail link. Clicking on the photograph or name opens a profile page that expands the contact information to include ‘Local time’, shown in am/pm configuration and updated every minute in real time.

The profiles are also launched from the tailored Contacts and Key contacts related links that are featured extensively in the right-hand column across the site. Media contacts in the News section are not photographed or profiled and their contact details do not include the Local time information.

The takeaway

Business-wide staff directories and ready access to topic-related contacts are a standard feature of law practice websites, where establishing individual as well as collective professional competency is vital. Dentons’ inclusion of ‘local time’ in personal contact information is a helpful and appropriate addition, especially to a firm that markets itself as global and “polycentric”.

There are nevertheless reasonable grounds for suggesting that the feature is not being deployed as well as it could be. First and foremost – and of relevance to any multinational with a press/media office – is the exclusion of media contacts from the system. This may be a technical issue related to the lack of personal profiles for media officers, but the information is no less important to their ‘clients’.

Second is the issue of confining the ‘real time’ clock to contact details in the profile pages. What’s to be gained by withholding it from the initial details, especially as the presence of a full profile and the linking mechanism to it are not indicated clearly?
First published 04 April, 2013
< Back to Tips