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Automating law practice: 5 signs your law firm is losing money without automation

Written by Erika Winston

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5 min read

Process automation is quickly spreading throughout the legal industry as more and more lawyers recognize the value of these time saving and profit-enhancing technologies. If you aren’t familiar with automation, it is the use of technology-enabled systems to perform law office processes and procedures with minimal human assistance. Automation can streamline a law office for maximum efficiency and service delivery.

The failure to implement automated processes results in a lost opportunity to bring more revenue into your law firm. If you aren’t sure whether to make the leap into automation, here are five signs that your firm is losing money without it.

Disorganized and misplaced files

If your client files lack organization and seem to get lost in the shuffle all too often, your firm is likely losing money. Paper records are extremely vulnerable. They can easily be lost, misfiled, or even destroyed.

The time that you and your staff members spend searching for files and specific documents is time that could be spent on billable tasks. Your firm’s highest earners should be spending their time on the most profitable tasks, not searching through disorganized files for missing data.

Poor file organization can also affect your client relationships. Legal clients expect organizations and productive assistance from their attorneys. When they see poor case management and disorganization, it gives them a negative impression of the practice and chips away at their trust in the firm’s abilities.

Lack of data sharing capabilities

In a firm with several lawyers and support staff members, data sharing becomes extremely important. For example, if two attorneys are working on the same matter, they need the capability to share files and documents easily and quickly.

Manual file procedures can frustrate data sharing. Attorneys and staff members have to shuttle physical files back and forth between collaborators. These extra steps can slow down movement on the case and increase the possibility of loss and inconsistencies.

With automated case management, attorneys can benefit from smart technologies that allow for greater organization, increased collaboration, and improved case management processes. These tools promote consistency throughout all of your law firm systems. Staff members no longer have to waste time and energy on inefficient manual processes.

Automation fosters responsive and reliable service delivery by providing users with the capabilities to review information remotely. This level of technological connectivity results in improved client experiences. When clients are dissatisfied, they look elsewhere for legal services, leading to lost profits for your firm.

Security breaches

If your law office has experienced one or more security breaches, then a lack of automation could be costing your firm money. Many automated case management systems include enhanced security measures to keep law firm and client data safe from breaches.

The most common reasons for law office security breaches are based in such human errors as inadequate passwords, lost files, and ineffective security measures. Automation reduces the opportunity for these errors, simultaneously increasing your firm’s level of cybersecurity.

Security breaches can be extremely expensive, possibly costing tens of thousands of dollars in liability and lost billable hours. The right automation system can save your law firm these extensive costs.

Inadequate billable hours

If your firm’s billable hours aren’t meeting your expectations, you may be missing out on the benefits of automation. Document automation saves your law firm members from the tedious tasks of constantly updating reused documents or repeatedly going through the steps of document drafting.

With customized templates and systems, document automation allows law firm members to quickly and easily complete these tasks without constantly reinventing the wheel and wasting time. With these technologies, legal documents can be drafted in minutes, instead of days – saving valuable time that is better spent on billable tasks.

When firms fail to implement document automation, they risk losing money through the unrecoverable hours and costs associated with document drafting.

Without automation, your firm also misses a valuable opportunity to retain knowledge within your practice. Document automation uses artificial intelligence technologies that learn and capture your attorney’s knowledge in the automated templates. So, even when firm members leave, aspects of their expertise remain within the firm.

Delayed client payments

Delayed client payments are a definite sign of money lost without automation. Often times, a client’s failure to pay represents a problem in your invoicing process. Maybe your bills are going out late or they contain inadequate information. With automated legal billing software, your law firm members can effectively capture all of their time and expenses accurately and efficiently. Invoices go out in a timely manner and clients pay them on time.

TimeSolv legal billing software offers law firms a highly effective invoicing experience, providing such benefits as:

  • Efficiency

Many attorneys hate the tasks of time tracking and legal billing because of the time these tasks can take. TimeSolv’s automated services allow for greater efficiency, making the tasks of time tracking and billing less time-consuming. Without the added responsibility of manually recording times and creating client invoices, attorneys can focus on more productive – and profitable -tasks.

  • Improved client communications

Automated legal billing helps law firms get their invoices into the hands of clients in a faster more efficient manner, resulting in faster bill payment. TimeSolv can also help improve client communications through its client portal that allows clients to review tasks completed in their cases.

  • Mobility

TimeSolv was designed to meet the mobile needs of modern law firms. With a convenient time tracking app, attorneys can quickly track time spent on client matters from virtually anywhere in the world, further promoting accurate time tracking and efficient invoicing.

Implement automation to stop losing money

Manual case management is extremely unreliable, often resulting in disorganized files, lost data, and inefficient processes. Digitized automation and innovative software options can transform the client management experience to save costs and increase profitability for your legal practice. Without automation tools, your law firm is likely losing money from vast inefficiencies, client dissatisfaction, and reduced productivity.

Automation represents the future of legal technology. When law firms take advantage of these innovations, they can benefit through higher profits and decreased losses. Click here to learn more about the automation offered by the TimeSolv legal billing system.

About Erika Winston:

Erika Winston is a freelance writer with a passion for law. Through her business, Personal Touch Edits, she helps legal professionals deliver effective written messages. Erika is a regular contributor to TimeSolv and a variety of other publications. 

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