Five Legal Tech Goals for the New Year

//Five Legal Tech Goals for the New Year

As the year comes to a close, it’s important to reflect on the things your law firm does well and the things that can be improved upon. If improving revenue stream and staff efficiency is a must (and when isn’t it?), implement these five tech goals in the coming year to help your office run more efficiently and effectively:

1. Streamline the paperwork process

Too many law firms are still dealing with a jumble of disorganized physical and digital files. When this is the case, important papers often end up lost, or duplicated with errors. A strong document management system is a must for the 21st century law firm. Smokeball offers a document management system in which forms are organized by matter, can be easily duplicated and altered to work for various client, and are accessible by all members of the firm through cloud storage.

2. Automate administrative tasks

When you spend your days completing administrative tasks, you’re taking time away from work that requires legal skills and education. You can better serve both your clients and your firm when you’ve streamlined administrative tasks to ensure they’re handled in the most efficient way possible. Smokeball can help you automate many administrative tasks and help you save both time and brainpower.

3. Keep contacts close to hand

Almost everyone keeps their contacts in a digital database these days, but that doesn’t mean that they are always easy to find or use. In the coming year, pledge to organize and update your firm’s contact lists to make sure that your legal staff can always find information for the people they need to contact in a  timely fashion.

4. File relevant emails for ease of access

A filing system is not complete unless it includes correspondence. However, printing emails only to file them away is wasteful, expensive and time consuming. Filing emails digitally, one by one, isn’t much better. Often, it just doesn’t get done and disorganization ensues. Smokeball integrates with Microsoft Word and Outlook to file every document and email associated with a specific matter in one place.

5. Set up a System for managing your work on the go

These days, there’s an expectation of quick responses to emails and calls, and that expectation doesn’t stop when you’re out of the office. For this reason and for simple convenience, mobile access to important documents is a key feature of any modern law firm’s tech setup. Smokeball offers iPhone and Android apps for easy access to your matters when you’re on the go.

What other resolutions are you setting for 2015?

By |December 9th, 2014|

About the Author:

For years, Josh has helped lawyers become more organized, productive, and profitable. A trained litigator, Josh came to Smokeball from a large east-coast law firm where his practice focused on franchise, insurance, marine, and general litigation. His work with Smokeball, and his continued passion for what he does each day, is driven by a desire to help lawyers and their staff do better in every way. Knowing well the stress and strain put on today’s legal professional, he regularly focuses on improving work and life in the law. He has traveled the country working with and learning from lawyers and their staff. Josh speaks regularly to bar associations about successful law firm practices and other legal topics. Recent notable engagements have been with the Chicago Bar Association, the Illinois State Bar Association, and the Missouri Bar’s Solo and Small Firm Conference. In addition to his work at Smokeball, Josh serves on the Writing Resource Center staff at The John Marshall Law School. Besides legal technology, his research interests include judicial decision-making, jury decision-making and psychology, and legal writing. He has written and overseen research exploring causal effects of sex/gender on federal appellate court decision-making, and assisted with research for a forthcoming textbook on judicial decision-making. Additionally, Josh sits on the Board of Directors of Chicago-based Community Activism Law Alliance and on the Board of Directors of Chicago Fringe Opera Company. Josh holds his J.D., cum laude, from Washington University in St. Louis, where he served as a Senior Editor of the Wash. U. Law Review, held the prestigious Thompson Coburn Research Fellowship, served as Research Assistant to then-Vice-Dean (now Chancellor) Andrew D. Martin, and clerked at the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri. He holds a B.A. in Political Science and a B.M. in Music Performance with Honors Scholar distinction from the University of Connecticut, making him a Huskies basketball fan through and through. Follow Josh’s activity on LinkedIn, and keep up with new articles on the Smokeball Blog.