Solicitors in private practice are often so busy with their individual files that they don’t have time to think about how their practice as a whole could be managed better. While in the past, law firms kept paper files, in recent years it has become common to utilise a number of different digital platforms to keep track of various aspects of a practice.
Good Legal Practice Management Software program can provide solicitors with a single customisable dashboard that provides an overview of their practice that is accessible in the cloud via mobile devices as well as from a computer. It allows lawyers to see at a glance the items in their calendar, funds held in trust, the number of open files, the total amount they have billed per quarter, and the number of outstanding and overdue invoices. It also allows them to view all the information relevant to a single file in one place, whether they are in the office, at court or on the road.
It is important to ensure that a Legal Practice Management System can be customised for your needs and is available to team leaders and to the accounts team.
Why is it important for law firms?
Legal Practice Management Software allows lawyers to remain one step ahead of client demands. It ensures finance departments remain on top of billing and debt recovery. It means that clients are always kept up to date with accurate invoicing and simplifies the supervision of solicitor work. It should also make it quicker and simpler to accurately assess the firm’s performance.
Whether you are running an existing law firm or starting your own law firm, legal management software can make your job simpler and help you to avoid making errors or missing deadlines. This law firm software helps with risk management for lawyers and provides a global management system for the firm.
Document Management System
In a paper filing system, documents tend to be messily piled up in chronological order. With document management software, which can be integrated into your Legal Practice Management Software, documents are sorted into folders so that you know exactly where to look. This means that solicitors can remain focused on their substantive work – advocating for clients and fighting to achieve the best possible outcome – rather than drowning in reams of paperwork.
Document management software keeps all documents relating to a matter in the same place. Solicitors and other staff working on the matter can see at a glance everything that has happened and is currently happening in the matter. This includes every document and email communication, invoicing, financials, upcoming court dates and trust receipts.
It is important that the Legal Practice Management Software is a complete package and contains trust accounting in its law firm software. It is imperative that the accounts department can do bulk invoicing to clients and carry out receipting of trust money and reconciliations simply and efficiently. This saves time and reduces the number of accounts staff required.
Your trust account system must be fully integrated for ease of use with auditable data trails to ensure Auditing is a breeze. It is imperative that it is also fully compliant with all legal and regulatory requirements in accordance with the various law societies within Australia.
Email management software for law firms
We’ve all experienced knowing that you received an email from your client or from the other side that contains exactly the information you need, but not being able to remember where you stored it. This can be particularly frustrating when it happens in court or during negotiations with the other side.
For this reason, it is essential that Practice Management Software has email management which allows solicitors to file emails with a single click. This means that correspondence with clients and other parties can be effortlessly saved in the right place so that it is easy to find during the next conversation with the client or the next court appearance. Information can be retrieved on a laptop, iPad or even a smartphone.
A powerful search function is also important. This allows you to easily find the document you’re looking for, making document management easy, especially when you’re in a hurry or under pressure.