Though the cloud has been around for a while now, many attorneys still hesitate to take the leap away from their old school ways. But this reluctance could be keeping your law firm from reaching its full potential. If you consider yourself a tech-savvy member of the legal profession, you should be utilizing the cloud – and here’s why:
The cloud really is more secure… really
I know there is still some level of disbelief within the industry, but the cloud really is more secure than your traditional storage system. I know the ability to see and touch your server may make you feel more comfortable with your security, but what you actually have is a false sense of security.
Servers aren’t reliable. They break, sometimes quite often, leaving you without the ability to access the data you need to serve your clients. They are also quite vulnerable to hackers and cyber attacks. Most solo and small firms cannot afford to employ a full-time cybersecurity expert, but the professionals who maintain cloud-based servers can.
These companies use the latest and greatest security measures to ensure data security and back-ups. With experts who spend extensive amounts of time identifying potential security risks and implementing appropriate measures, the cloud storage company is far more secure than your office server.
Your office server is also susceptible to physical damage. What if a burglar breaks in and steals your server or a tornado tears through the office, destroying everything in sight? Particular if your office is located within a disaster-prone area, the physical protection of your server becomes a top priority. But when you put your valuable data in the hands of a cloud-based provider, you can redirect those worries in another direction. Even a devastating office fire won’t keep you from accessing your data and operating your law practice.
The ABA has weighed in on this debate, stating that “…a legitimate argument can be made that files stored on the vendor’s servers are more secure than those located on a typical attorney’s PC, as the vendors often employ elaborate security measures and multiple redundant backups in their data centers.”
That reminds me… how often are you backing up your firm data? Every night, every week, maybe once a month. Whatever it is, it’s probably not often enough or consistent enough. With the cloud, your data is backed up automatically without any inconvenient downtime. So, you can always feel confident in the safety and security of your client and firm data.:
It’s a mobile society. Accessibility matters.
You’re at opposing counsel’s law firm for a settlement conference. In the middle of the meeting, you realize that an important document is still sitting on the corner of your desk where you left it last night. Now, you are forced to go forward without a resource that you desperately need, which places your client’s interests at risk. With cloud storage, you can pull up your electronic file and access exactly what you need without delay.
That level of accessibility is not only convenient, it is also vital to the level of service you provide your clients. Let’s consider another scenario. You primarily use your laptop for work. One day you turn it off, and it never comes back on. That broken laptop can leave you without such important data as case files, legal documents, and time tracking. Had you been utilizing cloud-based tools instead, you could easily log in from another computer and keep everything moving in the right direction.
Cloud accessibility also means that attorneys and employees have access to the same files, software, and other important data anytime and anywhere. Whether in the courtroom, a restaurant, or on vacation, everyone with authorization can access what they need. The results are a more efficient use of time, increased productivity, and greater profitability.
And don’t worry about unauthorized individuals accessing your files. You can set the parameters for access, so only people with the right credentials get access.:
No storage limitations here
You probably plan to be in practice for many years to come. Each of those additional years brings additional files and the need for additional storage space. You can only put so many file cabinets into your office. They’re bulky, vulnerable to unauthorized entry, and just plain limited.
Cloud-based file storage addresses all three of these shortcomings. Storage is off-site, so there are no bulky file cabinets to maneuver. For all of the reasons I mentioned above, cloud storage is far more secure and reliable, with limitless possibilities. Additionally, if you run out of storage space, you can easily secure more.:
Cost savings anyone?
In addition to all of these benefits, cloud-based systems can also provide your law firm with valuable savings. For example, TimeSolv uses a cloud-based platform to help attorneys with various administrative tasks. From time tracking and billing to legal project management, TimeSolv offers an innovative and affordable alternative to traditional legal billing systems.
Those legacy systems can cost your firm thousands upon thousands of dollars in subscription costs, upgrades, and technical support. But TimeSolv’s monthly service plan is reasonably priced and encompassing of everything you need to keep your practice running in an efficient manner.
There are no extra upgrade costs because upgrades are automatically included in your service. They don’t expect you to purchase new versions of their software each year, further saving you money. With affordable tech service offerings, you can keep your software effectively working without breaking the budget.
Cloud-based services provide small and medium law practices with the resources they need to run effectively. As a result, these attorneys can spend their time on the profitable aspects of running a law office instead of worrying about data security, accessibility, and wasted money.
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.