After a year and some months of coping with the stinging effects of the pandemic, the professional industry, including law firms, is looking to bounce back stronger. Law firms have begun reopening their doors, and the utilization of office space is slowly increasing.
But despite all that, one thing’s for sure; the workplace environment can never remain the same, as the pandemic has left a long-standing mark. YES, the healthcare sector has done an incredible job so far, to the point of rolling out a vaccine. But it’s not like COVID-19 is now out of the picture; the virus is still persistent and poses a significant challenge to professionals reopening their offices.
As firms thrive in person-to-person interactions between attorneys, partners, clients, paralegals, interns, etc. it’s challenging to maintain these meaningful interactions while still keeping safe from the virus. And on top of the COVID-related challenges, most law firms still struggle with time management, expense tracking, work/life balance, cyber threats, etc.
The good news is, for many of these challenges, technology is the answer! The effective use of technology solutions in your law firm can help you overcome most practice and administrative challenges with little investment and effort. Curious to learn more? Keep scrolling for an in-depth review of the top five tech solutions for law firms.
Legal Time Tracking and Billing Software
Most law firms struggle with accurately tracking billable hours and expenses for legal matters. Hence, they end up losing lots of revenues by under-charging their clients for the time and expenses spent working on their cases. Well, you can change that by acquiring legal time management and billing software like LawBillity.
The technology solution can save you up to 30+ hours per month in admin, increasing your firm’s revenues as a result. It comes with lots of awe-inspiring features for time management, expense tracking, detailed reporting, online payment, and more.
For instance, the time tracking capability enables you to accurately and conveniently capture every billable second from anywhere, using any device. And the best part you can increase your billable work by analyzing the billable vs. non-billable hours report. This enables you to increase law firm profitability by focusing more on tasks that add revenue.
The expense tracking functionality can also help optimize your firm’s revenue by ensuring that all expenses incurred working on a client’s legal matters get reimbursed. And tracking the costs is a no-brainer; you simply need to snap a photo of the receipt and attach it to a case when sending the invoice. Speaking of invoicing, you can effortlessly convert your clients’ billable work into invoices in a few clicks. All you need to do is export your invoices in either LSS or LEDES formats and get paid faster through LawPay.
Video Conferencing Software
As we mentioned earlier, the pandemic has left a long-standing mark in the professional sector, and one of the new cultures that may persist for many years to come is remote working. As much as lawyers need in-person interactions to execute their duties superbly, most firms aren’t willing to let go of the work-from-home setup.
So, what’s the best solution for keeping lawyers, teams, and clients connected from diverse locations? You guessed it; video conferencing solutions are vital in enabling real-time communication and collaboration, albeit virtually. In fact, 37% of clients prefer connecting virtually with clients for consultation or first-time meetings. But that’s not all; 50% of clients would like follow-up meetings to be virtual as well.
So as a law firm committed to enhancing the client experience, it’s in your best interest that you acquire a top-quality video conferencing tool for communicating and collaborating with teams and clients. Some of the top options include Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Slack, Legaler, GoToMeeting, Skype, and more.
Document Management Software
As a competent lawyer, you want to ensure that your work documents and files are always available and effortlessly retrievable when you need them. But that may not be guaranteed when your law firm relies on the old-school paper and clipboard method to organize and store your documents.
It’s high time your law firm acquired the best-in-class document management system for storing all documents, files, and emails related to client and legal matters in a central location. This makes it trouble-free to retrieve documents and ensure that only authorized personnel have access to classified files. For instance, your law firm can configure the system’s permission settings to control how and who accesses documents depending on the case type, location, expertise, etc.
Besides a document management system, your law firm also needs a document automation tool. The solution can help attorneys streamline document creation, e.g., motions and letters, by using pre-existing data like contact info and key dates to fill out the forms for you automatically. After that, you only need to transfer the forms to a document management system for safe storage and effortless retrieval.
It’s time for your law firm to migrate from the traditional and costly telephone system to a modernized VoIP telephony, if you haven’t already. A voice over internet protocol (VoIP) phone service complements the collaboration and communication solutions discussed above by making it effortless and affordable to make and answer calls from anywhere.
It’s a cost-efficient solution that you can install and maintain at your law firm at a fraction of the cost of running a traditional call center. Plus, it comes with a host of features that you can implement to improve your law firm communication among clients and teams for optimal satisfaction. These include:
- Advanced call management
- Call forwarding
- Voicemail forwarding and greetings
- Voicemail conversion to text
- Business text messaging
- Anonymous call rejection
- Call routing
- Call recording and rating
Virtual Legal Assistants
Virtual Legal Assistants (VLAs), aka AI-powered chatbots, are taking the legal practice by storm. And according to Gartner’s predictions, VLAs may constitute almost one-quarter of all internal requests of big companies to legal departments by 2023.
These technologies have portrayed the capability to enhance the in-house legal team’s operational efficiency in several ways. For starters, VLAs can help law firms tackle the countless internal queries legal departments often face. They can also improve client satisfaction by ensuring that no call goes unanswered. Furthermore, by removing the need for a human reply, VLAs also improve efficiency and response times, enhancing the client experience.
When a virtual assistant can’t provide a response, it directs the question to an appropriate resource, providing attorneys with valuable info and research that can help address their concerns quickly and accurately. VLAs aren’t here to replace human assistants. They’re only best suited to handle time-consuming, repetitive tasks like answering FAQs, allowing human assistants to focus on responsibilities that require personal input.
And that’s it for the best technology solutions every law firm needs to streamline its operations, increase revenues, and enhance client satisfaction. Hopefully, this resource was insightful, and you learned about a new legal practice technology tool that can help your firm hit the growth trajectory.
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