Five Ways to Save Five Hours Per Week

//Five Ways to Save Five Hours Per Week

With the heavy workload most small law firms see on a daily basis, lawyers should take advantage of every time-saving tool they can get their hands on. Digital tools streamline legal and general office processes, saving time for small law firms and the attorneys and other staff who keep them running. In the legal field, every minute saved adds up! Learn to find more time in your work week by shaving minutes off every hour with these smart office tools.


1. Email Automation

Email automation tools allow you to schedule email reminders and follow-up messages to clients with just a couple clicks. Use automation tools like MailChimp to send large email blasts (such as an e-newsletter), or Gmail’s Boomerang to automate individual messages like client followups and reminders.


2. Email Management Tools

In 2012, a report from MicKinsey Global Institute found that workers spent more than a quarter of their workweek reading and responding to emails. In addition to the sort of email automation tools mentioned about,  email management tools like Yesware and Rapportive allow your firm to save time by keeping your email time as productive as possible. Yesware, designed for salespeople, allows you to track email opens and clicks and create email templates where all you have to do is fill in information like recipient name or company name. Rapportive displays information about your contacts directly inside your Gmail inbox, saving the time you might spend looking up contact details.


3. Project Management Tools

Keep projects running smoothly by organizing team tasks. Tools like Basecamp and various Gantt Chart programs can save your firm time by creating a clear workflow, visually assigning tasks to individual employees and keeping each project’s timeline up-to-date.


4. Cloud or Networked Storage

In 2014, no small law firm should need to transfer important documents between lawyers by thumb drive or email attachment. All important information should be digitally available to everyone in the firm who needs to use it. This not only saves time but lessens the risk of confusion between multiple versions of a file. Try using Dropbox for Business or a cloud solution like Smokeball.


5. Digital Filing

Smokeball enables small law firms to digitally store all of their paperwork, eliminating the need for disorganized filing cabinets and messy stacks of paper. Documents and matters stored on Smokeball’s cloud system are accessible from anywhere, offline and online, and are easily searchable.


Think your firm could benefit from a technology upgrade? Take a tour of the time-saving features offered in Smokeball’s productivity software for law firms!


By |September 16th, 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.