A significant portion of the conversation surrounding legal practice management software centers on its time-saving capabilities. Of course, it is undeniable that automating your firm will do wonders for its efficiency; this is a tremendous benefit of legal software. However, the unilateral focus on time-saving can do legal software an injustice. The benefits of investing in a sophisticated, intuitive practice management software abound, not the least of them being the wonders these platforms do for optimizing your firm’s communication, both with clients and within.

Lead your firm to more growth

Terrible headline pun aside, the implications that automation has for communication with your firm’s leads are an underrated and potentially revolutionary avenue for profitability. Legal software (the good ones, anyway) should equip your firm with an arsenal of tools to make communicating extensively with prospective clients as easy as possible. For one, your software should absolutely offer intake form automation. These forms should not just be customizable but automated to allow you to make the most of your prospects. This means prioritizing legal software that will populate incoming clients’ information into a new Contact form for your firm automatically. It also means making sure that your software alerts you when this occurs, thereby ensuring that your follow-ups are as timely as possible. Legal experts agree that a leading reason for lost business amongst attorneys is a failure to answer the phone or otherwise get into contact with leads. In fact, over two-thirds of legal clients choose their legal provider based on their efficiency in following up. By receiving text message notifications from your software the moment a lead submits an intake form, you’ll eliminate this potential threat to your business with virtually no effort.

Happy clients, happy firm

Of course, remaining in thorough and consistent communication with your clients is a cornerstone of providing quality legal services. Unfortunately, the strains placed on attorneys’ time can make it taxing to do so, particularly for those clients who are particularly exigent. This is why it is crucial to be supported in your communication efforts by your firm’s legal software. A client portal is extremely important to be included in your practice management software, as it provides a secure and efficient platform for you to share documents, questions (and answers), and any relevant evidence or forms with your clients in a streamlined manner. To supplement the materials shared in your client portal, look for a legal software that syncs to your calendaring platform and sends you direct reminders about upcoming tasks, deadlines, and meetings with clients, ensuring that you are both diligent and accessible. A tremendously valuable feature in a legal software is to invest in a platform that offers a direct integration with your email. This will allow you to create or edit new contacts and matters in your software right from your inbox, as well as to save emails and ongoing correspondence to your software (also from your inbox). Streamlined communication makes for optimized efficiency, resulting in optimal client relationships.

Internal communication is key

Too often, questions and comments between colleagues get lost in a pile of unread (and then archived) emails. Time-sensitivity is a major component of any legal interaction, particularly one between colleagues, and it is paramount that your legal software keeps up with the pace. This is why it is inexcusable for your practice management software not to have an internal chat function. The chat should notify your colleagues immediately, on their browser and on their phone, about incoming messages from you, allowing you to communicate as efficiently as possible in order to get the answers you need within the frame of time that you need them. To supplement this sophisticated communication feature, definitely look for a software with automated workflow generation. This allows you to assign tasks and set deadlines associated with each of your cases to your colleagues one time, then save these scheduling templates by matter type so that, when activated, they automatically assign deadlines and tasks to your associates. To read more about PracticePanther’s intuitive automated workflows, click here.

Legal software and you

When shopping for or evaluating your practice management software, consider its benefits to your firm from a multifaceted standpoint: instead of considering time-saving alone, consider it in conjunction with the benefits legal software will have for your client interactions, particularly when it comes to streamlining the cornerstone of it all: communication. By harnessing the various features offered by your software to this end, you’ll establish a productive and lucrative communication pattern within your firm for the long-term.  

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