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Implementing a software change at your law firm

Noel Peel

Written by

Noel Peel


June 3, 2021

2020 has been a year full of change, much of it unexpected. Law firms have had to adapt to working remotelyusing new technology and lawyer apps, and potentially even shifting their goals for the year. 

It’s no secret that humans tend to resist change – in fact, we recently hosted an entire webinar focused on stress management during times of turbulence. Not all change, however, has to have a negative effect. If you‘re considering updating your firm’s legal software, there’s never been a better time to get started. We’ve compiled a list of tips to help you succeed. 

Identify goals

The first step to committing to a change is identifying why you’re doing it. You might be transitioning to a new legal billing software with the ultimate goal of increasing your billing frequency from monthly to biweekly, or hoping to capture more billable hours through automatic time trackingHaving a clear goal by which you can measure your success will help you to stay on target. 

Create buy-in

If you work with a team, it’s important to get everyone on the same page before making a significant change to the way you work. Perhaps you can schedule a software demo for your entire team during the research process, or hold a Q & A session to dispel any concerns.  

Get help

Just as a client may hire a personal injury attorney to help them through a complex legal battleacquiring the appropriate expert assistance can make all the differenceWhether that means someone to help with a data transfer or a tech professional to assist in choosing new computers, don’t be afraid to ask for help! (And remember – Smokeball offers complimentary onboarding, training, and support for all clients.)  

Set deadlines

As the saying goes, “A goal is just a dream with a deadline.” Once you’ve made the decision to implement new legal software, it’s important to create deadlines that will help you track your progress. Avoid the frustration of setting unrealistic deadlines – break things up into manageable chunks! Perhaps you set one deadline for migrating client information into the new system, one for all staff to have completed onboarding training, and one more for being totally switched over to your new practice management system. 

Identify what’s not working, and adjust

Even the best-laid plans can have snags. The faster you recognize an issue, the faster you can take steps to rectify it. It’s much easier in the long run to schedule an extra training session for a colleague who’s feeling overwhelmed by new software, than to ignore the problem only to find that they’ve been carrying out a critical task incorrectly months later. 

Change can be intimidating, but is worth it in the end. Smokeball’s legal case management software helps law firms increase productivity and profitability through document automation and document managementautomatic time tracking, a secure client portal, and more. Contact us to get started.  

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