The average person spends 28% of the workweek reading and responding to email.
With so much of one’s day spent on this task, it should come as no surprise that numerous studies have shown that email can lead to anxiety. One of the major causes of this stress: it feels like it’s never done.
During our recent ALA webcast, The Flexible Law Firm: Is your practice ready to embrace a work from home program?, there were dozens of questions around technology solutions required for successful implementation of a work-from-home program. You need the right devices, the right processes and the right software that enforce accountability, keep your team connected and make your data accessible (while keeping it secure).
A work-from-home policy presents many benefits and drawbacks for a modern law firm. With a virtual law office, your firm will save on monthly rent costs and is likely to experience less employee turnover. However, remotely participating in meetings with clients and employees can be challenging when employees must rely on technology alone for critical communication. Luckily, there are affordable technologies available that will alleviate some of these challenges.
Inspired by the latest Netflix binge craze, “Tidying Up with Marie Kondo,” millions of Americans are decluttering. In the series, organizing expert Kondo travels to homes of stressed-out Americans to help them discard items that no longer spark joy and organize their living spaces in a meaningful way. Kondo contends that having little time or energy to organize can lead to anxiety and tension. As she explains in her best-selling book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing: “In essence, tidying ought to be the act of restoring balance among people, their possessions, and the house they live in.”
The New Year is the perfect time to reassess how you’ve been doing and make adjustments. Have you thought about cleaning house and moving to paperless? Running a paperless office has never been easier. With the advances in legal technology, the days of large scale cabinets filled with files in disarray are gone. Now, with law practice management software like Zola Suite, you can digitalize your entire office’s case files and communications. Going paperless will save you time, money, and add appeal for potential clients.
We can all clearly picture a lawyer that has been in practice for decades. They are trapped behind a desk piled high with client files, various documents, and correspondence long needed to be sorted and filed. They complain that they can’t ever find what they are looking for in the pile of papers they have amassed. Notes about important client meetings fall by the wayside. The dreaded end of the month comes and they have to enter their billable hours they have scrawled down on a piece of paper. These kind of lawyer problems are a thing of the past with advances in legal technology.
This year’s hurricane season has been disastrous for many people and their businesses. Those that were affected by the storm, and even those that weren’t directly in the storm’s path, experienced devastating encounters that made it difficult, if not impossible, to operate under normal conditions. “In times of need, the legal community is a crucial link in providing help to secure housing, file insurance claims, replace wills and emergency directives and other urgent legal services,” said our CEO Fred Cohen. However, in many cases, the storms made it challenging for lawyers to access files and communicate with their clients during a very vulnerable time.
The idea that legal technology could be better suited for the less tech-savvy lawyer sounds counterintuitive. The truth is that Zola Suite, next generation legal practice management software, provides lawyers who are less familiar with technology with a leg up. This is due in part to the fact that law practice management solutions streamline the use of many different legal tech tools such as accounting programs, document management systems, email, and interoffice communication systems. With legal practice management software, all of these different tech tools fall into one, more manageable program.
Here at Zola, we can understand why so many legal practice management programs make grand claims of being fully integrated, all-in-one solutions. Software with capabilities to meet all your law practice management needs in one user-friendly interface is appealing. The fact of the matter is that these claims are often misleading. You end up stuck with practice management software that relies on third-party applications and integrations to meet many of your key needs. The bottom line is – you can’t be an all-in-one practice management solution if you are relying on third party applications for important functions such as email, accounting, and document management.
“All anyone asks for is a chance to work with pride” – William Edwards Deming
The principles of total quality management (TQM), spearheaded by William Edwards Deming decades ago, continue to be exceptional tools for practicing attorneys. Given the competitive landscape currently facing the legal community, it is essential for any law firm to offer best-in-class service. After all, the name of the game is client satisfaction and their happiness drives referrals. These principles are not for rainmakers only, however, and it is critical for your entire team to buy into TQM.