For quite some time now it has been apparent that technology is crucial to the modern practice of law — but now, the application of legal technology directly and formally involves the more general question of a lawyer’s competence. Lawyers now must be thinking about upgrading their technology platforms to keep pace with the evolving demands and innovations that are necessary for an efficient and profitable law firm.
The following are seven categories of legal software technology that firms should use to take advantage of the best programs available for streamlining their law practice management and workflow.
Effective task management is the key to a successful law firm. By eliminating emails and sticky notes with comprehensive software task tools, you can quickly and easily view open and completed tasks on a case firm-wide. Your legal team can see the tasks waiting for them or check on the tasks that have been assigned to others. If there is one thing lawyers commonly agree on, it’s that they need productivity software to do the basic things required of their office staff: drafting, emailing, creating presentations, creating and building databases and spreadsheets. It is much easier to have accountability whether creating due dates, or logging priority levels – task and messaging features help run a tight ship. In-app notifications for new and completed tasks will encourage firm-wide efficiency. Microsoft Office suite has typically been the go-to tool. However, Microsoft Office is not the standalone version it once was. The main opponent of the Office arrangement is Google Apps for Work, which features its own productivity suite, in league with Gmail. Several freeware alternatives exist as well.
If you want your firm to go paperless, a PDF conversion program is a must-have, since many law firms still receive paper documents. PDF conversion software allows you to scan a document to PDF so you can edit it. Among other features, you will be able to add encryption, remove metadata and build forms. Any scanner you purchase is likely to include at least some level of built-in software, but then again, you are not really streamlining are you.
There are still lawyers practicing that are dedicated to mail merge. There are much better ways to build documents these days. A document automation program allows you to customize existing templates in several ways. Law ruler for example, has software that will customize document templates and automation with an online editor and automate printing and delivery to clients letting you save valuable time with this efficient process. First, open any document from Microsoft Word and sign into Law Ruler and go into the Document Templates and Automation screen. Next locate the mail merge codes for each field that you want to add to the document. For example – client names, addresses, or Court. Paste the Law Ruler mail merge codes into the document, save your work in Law Ruler and a document template is created.
Almost every accounting program has time and billing features, and many time and billing applications feature at least some aspect of accounting features. For many solo and small law firms, a time and billing/accounting program must do four things:
Law Ruler, a leader in legal practice management technology, provides comprehensive legal case management software combined with the best legal intake CRM on the market today. No other legal software vendor offers such a comprehensive solution for growing firms plus unsurpassed customer assistance. Please schedule a consultative demo call to find out more about Law Ruler and to see if we are the right fit to grow your law firm. We look forward to answering your questions and discussing marketing and practice management solutions for your firm. Stop doubling your workload with separate systems and start simplifying your law firm’s management while increasing your profits.