Are Simple Admin Tasks Killing Your Law Firm’s Profitability?

//Are Simple Admin Tasks Killing Your Law Firm’s Profitability?

How much time do you and your staff spend on non-billable administrative tasks when you could be building your business or billing for substantive legal work? My guess is you’re spending far more time than you realize on:

  • Searching for emails multiple times a day for a specific client
  • Forwarding, cc-ing, or copying emails to try and keep your team in the loop
  • Keeping track of up-to-date addresses and phone numbers for the myriad of people you deal with
  • Finding a court or county form
  • Typing the same client and opposing counsel’s details into multiple documents and so on

Unless you have the right systems in place however, you will continue to spend a significant portion of your day on administrative tasks to ensure all tasks are followed up or completed.

In a small law firm, your time is valuable, yet less than 50% of small law firms utilize a case or practice management system to help them manage their workload and get more work done in the day.* You simply should not have to spend extra time searching through emails, entering repetitive data, forwarding, uploading and downloading multiple items just to keep yourself organized and up-to-date.

Spending too much time on administrative tasks dramatically affects your bottom line. The right tools will help you spend 30-40% more of your day on billable work, and the best tool is a case or practice management system designed for legal work like Smokeball.

If you don’t have a law practice management system in place currently, here are 4 simple tricks you can implement to reduce the time you spend on admin tasks:

  • Create email rules based on the from address or subject and move into a specific folder for each matter
  • Create templates to ensure consistency is maintained when drafting and creating documents
  • Set up calendar reminders to ensure you’ve completed tasks on time
  • Create a centralized database of all contacts

Smokeball’s integration with Microsoft Word and Outlook makes managing your documents and emails seamless. All your emails sent and received by anyone on your team save directly to the matter, eliminating your admin tasks of downloading, uploading or filing that email to a specific folder.

Smokeball’s case management software comes complete with a library of legal forms with over 6,000 court and county forms across every area of law. All forms auto-populate your case information, from your client’s details to the case number, Judge and more. This eliminates the time searching for the form as well as typing the same case details over and over again. Smokeball’s integration with Microsoft Word automatically fills your documents with the case details in less than 3 seconds.

Do you come across times when you’re not sure if you or someone else in the office hasn’t followed up with a client? Smokeball Law Practice Management Software makes it so easy for you to see all the emails sent and received, tasks completed and calendar dates coming up. Reduce the headache of searching, dragging and dropping documents and emails to make sure it’s filed somewhere. Smokeball will automatically organize everything for your client so that you don’t have to.

Stop spending your valuable minutes on non-billable administrative tasks. Let automation rules or software solutions guide you to success in making sure your client is happy. The more efficient you and your team can be, the better services you can provide to your clients and the more clients you can serve.

*Solo and Offices up to 9 attorneys in the 2016 ABA Survey Technology Report Page xxiii

By |February 6th, 2017|

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.