From meeting deadlines to filing pleadings and motions in court, lawyers face varied and unrelenting time pressures, many beyond their control.
Little wonder, then, that one of the most common sentiments we hear from lawyers is how they wish they could just have a few extra hours in the day to complete their work and still have a life outside the office. Difficulty achieving "work-life balance" in the legal profession has been cited as a significant contributor to high rates of professional attrition among young lawyers, and to the persistently high incidence of depression and other mental health concerns within the industry.
At LawMaster, we understand the importance of giving overworked, over-scheduled lawyers some time, and life, back. While we can't make the Earth rotate slower, we can help lawyers become more efficient through the implementation of Practice Management Technology. Here's how:
Wheel-Spinning: The Enemy
The study of law attracts young, talented people because, among other reasons, it holds the promise of working at the forefront of novel, complex issues affecting business and society. When they enter legal practice, however, many young lawyers discover that legal practice thrives in significant part on repetition of relatively rote tasks – preparing purchase and sale agreements, for example, or churning out complaints against insurance companies.
At the beginning of their careers, junior lawyers spend an inordinate amount of time "spinning their wheels" on these tasks. Some of this excess effort is a necessary part of the learning process, but a large portion of it is simply the result of law firms lacking the necessary infrastructure to help lawyers find and benefit from existing work product that would help them get their jobs done faster. Every young lawyer knows the extreme frustration of having a senior partner tell them "we did this in the such-and-such case, just find the document we prepared in that matter and adapt it," and then searching for hours for the specific document the partner meant, only to discover the partner's memory is faulty, or of that the document is missing from its file or stored off-site.
Legal Software: The Ally
A law firm's most valuable asset is the collective knowledge and skill of its human capital. But, humans are flawed vessels for all of this experience and ability. They forget, make mistakes, change jobs, and fall ill. To make the most of their accumulated wisdom and talents, they need the right tools.
In the war against lawyers spinning their wheels on duplicate tasks, there is no greater ally than the tool of Practice Management Software. Knowledge and document management systems like LawMaster's give lawyers the ability to organise, archive, and share a firm's entire body of knowledge in a single virtual location.
Take LawMaster's electronic cabinets and referral features, for example, which eliminate the inefficient and frustrating job of hunting through poorly-organised physical filing for work product and research. Instead, a central repository of documents in a cloud-hosted electronic format catalogues the firm's base of knowledge and output across a range of searchable variables. Lawyers of all ages need only conduct a simple, intuitive query to find the documents they need to get their work done faster, so they can head home to their families and lives sooner. Furthermore, use the intelligent workflows in order to remove repetitive tasks entirely. This will allow you to allocate staff to billable tasks of greater importance.
LawMaster Is Your Work-Life Balance Solution
At LawMaster, we recognise that achieving work-life balance is a fundamental goal of the Australian legal industry. We develop solutions to help lawyers at firms of all sizes eliminate inefficiencies, so they can recapture precious time and make the most of their careers. Contact us today to find out more about our client engagement journey.