Legal teams are seemingly drowning in paperwork at every angle. Storing it all isn’t the only issue. How do you find what you need when you need it? How many copies do you keep on hand for clients?
Wading through piles of data isn’t just time-consuming, it’s also costly.
The digital age has brought us paperless capabilities to help combat the war on paper. However, the word “paperless” for law firms isn’t as self-explanatory as it seems. In fact, if you eventually achieve a completely paperless office, you may have performed the impossible.
Let’s look at what it means to go paperless in your law firm and see how paperless solutions can help you run a better practice.
What Does a Paperless Law Firm Look Like?
We now live in a world where just about any piece of information you want is available within a few keystrokes and clicks. And, thanks to the increasing use of the smartphone, this information is readily available wherever you are. People are exchanging digital data through email, text messages, and file sharing programs like Dropbox.
Because of this widespread availability, it simply doesn’t make sense to keep paper records on hand. Digital files are already part of a lawyer’s daily business, and keeping unnecessary paper in the mix can complicate your ability to serve your clients.
However, having a paperless law office doesn’t mean eliminating all paper. Rather, think of it as significantly reducing your paper usage, limiting yourself to printing only what’s absolutely crucial and keeping the rest in the digital world.
For law firms, this means managing cases and documents from your computer rather than a paper file. It’s emailing documents rather than using the postal service. It’s using eFiling to help you meet deadlines.
In short, investing in a paperless solution can give you the flexibility to manage every area of your practice – even if you’re not in the office.
Taking Your Law Practice Paperless
There are several benefits to adopting a paperless practice. For starters, you’ll save money on paper and toner by keeping files on the server. You can find and retrieve documents easily to serve your clients faster. It’s a smaller impact on the environment. And it offers more security than having papers scattered throughout the office.
Before you commit to taking your law firm paperless, there are a few things you should look for:
Cloud computing has given data management a boost by relieving you of maintenance and associated costs. It’s safe, secure, and makes it easy to share information between team members rather than having documents residing on a single computer.
Your paperless solution should eliminate the security concerns of paper records. By ensuring only authorized eyes are able to access certain information, you’re protecting your clients’ private data and your firm’s best interests.
You should look for flexibility to ensure you’re investing in a system that works how you want it to. Having a customizable approach can help reduce your learning curve so you can start enjoying the benefits faster.
The world continues to gravitate toward digital solutions, and law firms are stepping up their adoption rates. Once you make the transition and see how much it’s improved your practice, you’ll wish you’d started sooner.
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