3 Steps to Make Legal Document Assembly Software Pay Off

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3 Steps to Make Legal Document Assembly Software Pay Off

Imagine you are part of a small-to medium-sized law firm (for many of you that may be extremely easy) that is considering the implementation of document assembly software in your practice. What might on the top of your “must have” column when deliberating such a decision?

Is it “a chance to be labeled an innovator?” Or, “a need to keep up with the times?” Maybe those are on your list, but I’ll bet you’ve saved the top slot for “get a return on investment.” And, I certainly don’t blame you. When spending money on integrating any new technology, you want to know that — eventually, quickly — it will be worth the up-front expenditures.

#1 Start with a Baseline Measurement

Understanding whether you will get that return on investment (ROI) requires accurate measurements of what you spend and what you will get back. That in itself might involve some data gathering. Before you spend a dollar on automation, it’s a smart idea to know how much time and person power — and therefore, money — go into the workflow tasks of your office.

How long does it take to create a legal document? How many partner hours go into it? How about the time commitment of your support legal secretary, paralegal or admin staff? Remember, you can’t measure anything effectively without good data.

#2 Define Your Win

Even if you have a clear measurement on how much time and money currently goes into your document assembly process, the concept of ROI is not defined universally across all law practices. For some firms, ROI is measured in minutes saved, and those minutes translate to time that can be spent on client work or other billable hours.

According to a 2011 study by LegalFutures, taking instruction and drafting one of several common legal documents requires about 86 minutes on average. When using an automated system, that time can be cut by an average of 50%. That time saving can be passed on to more premium billable hours, and over the long term, can generate substantial new revenue.

Some firms may measure that ROI in increased efficiency. Document assembly software streamlines processes, manages version control, and reduces typos. Whether your firm handles high-volume, low-profit margin documents or low-volume, high-profit ones, production time for producing high-quality contracts or agreements without multiple rounds of revisions is slashed.

#3 Calculate the Numbers

Many firms may want to use dollars and cents to measure the advantage of incorporating document automation into their offices. Researching cost and scope of software alternatives — and there are many — can give you a better idea of what kind of system would be most advantageous to your infrastructure and current staff. Using the simple ROI formula of:

Net Profit/Total Investment x 100 = ROI

to determine your short-term and long-term returns will help calculate cost-benefit analysis.

ROI can be measured in many ways, but at JurisDOC, we believe that time is money. Our software — with legal document assembly, time tracking, billing, and processing payment functions — is newly priced at only $50/month per user, which delivers a quick return on investment, no matter how you measure it.

We’re so sure that you’ll find JurisDOC useful that we offer a free trial. Click here to learn more or click here to download your free trial. You’ll be amazed at how quickly you can start saving time and money.


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Why Customer Service Should Matter to Law Firms

Fellow lawyers, here’s a quick question for you: If I were to ask your last few clients what most impressed them about your firm, what would they say? Would they marvel at your ability to put together a flawless legal brief? Would they sing the praises of the wording choices on your non-disclosure agreement? How about your skill in breaking down your billable activities on an invoice?

I’m guessing none of those things really impress your clients. Because they’re probably not lawyers. And, although obtaining legal advice and representation is a commodity that folks are willing to pay substantially for, increased competition and access to information online means a broad range of choices for potential customers.

In fact, a recent survey found that 60% of corporate clients had replaced one of their primary law firms in the past 24 months due to dissatisfaction. Just like companies in any other service industry, law firms are increasingly expected to provide more than just the requested forms and motions; they are required to deliver outstanding customer service.

So, how can you make sure that you are keeping your clients happy enough, not only to stay on with your firm, but refer you to others? Provide a level of service and care that your customers can recognize as above and beyond.

Be Available — and, I Mean YOU
Your clients are paying top dollar for your advice, so when you don’t respond to their voicemails and emails, or have your assistant make a call for you, they can feel cheated. Not to mention, legal proceedings can be confusing and anxiety provoking for non-lawyers; they need to know you’re handling their case effectively. Make sure you are keeping your clients informed and get back to them promptly when they reach out to you.

Listen to Your Clients — and, I Mean REALLY Listen
Clients want to know they are more than just the 2:00 p.m. slot in your Outlook calendar. Building customer loyalty means learning about your clients and understanding their unique needs and perspectives.

Think about client interactions beyond the case particulars and instead consider how successful ones can enhance your professional relationships and strengthen loyalty. Remembering a child’s name or an interesting hobby can go a long way towards providing that warm and fuzzy feeling.

Value Can Be Priceless
If customers feel they’re being nickeled and dimed, I can guarantee they won’t recommend you to others. Be clear on your invoices as to what is being charged and why – make sure clients understand how every activity billed supports their case.

And, remember that value goes beyond dollars and cents; it’s a feeling you want your clients to experience. Figuring out how to provide that to each person you’re helping is priceless.

Use Technology to Your Advantage — and Your Client’s
Implementing technology to cut down on the time it takes to serve your clients helps them and you. Whether you’re storing contacts and leads in an online database, incorporating a customer relationship management solution in your office or leveraging JurisDOC document assembly software to make your firm more efficient, you should be taking advantage of leading-edge tools that make customer service a heck of a lot easier.

Great customer service should start with the first client interaction and should end…well, it shouldn’t end. At JurisDOC, we pride ourselves on providing an outstanding level of customer service to our lawyer clients, and that commitment has paid off.

Are You Ready for a New Opportunity? We’re Hiring!
JurisDOC continues to grow, and we’re excited to expand our team. We’ve got the software and law aspects of the business covered, and we’re looking for a person who will focus on sales — introducing potential customers to JurisDOC and helping them get up and running with the software.

The ideal candidate will come equipped with successful experience in tech sales and also be knowledgeable about law office operations. We’re offering a commission-only compensation arrangement that can deliver significant income to a successful salesperson. If that’s you — or someone you know — please contact me directly at gtharris@jurisdocpro.com.

And, if you’d like to learn more about how our automated document assembly software can make your law office more efficient and productive to keep your clients coming back for more, you should consider a free trial of JurisDOC. There’s no better way to see how quickly you can save time — and money.


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6 Reasons Lawyers Should Take on Pro Bono Work

It’s easy to pass on pro bono work when you’ve got a demanding caseload and are already working long hours. In your free time—you want to relax! But, before you stretch out on the backyard hammock or head to the idyllic vacation spot, consider these compelling reasons to do pro bono work, not the least of which is that it will make you happier:

Help People Who Really Need It
As a practicing lawyer, you are in a unique position to help people desperately in need of services you can provide, but they cannot afford. You have the opportunity to impact their lives in a meaningful and significant way – protect them from eviction, ensure their electricity stays on, or some other urgent issue. Whatever the issue, it’s a chance for you to make the legal system work for those who have nowhere else to turn.

Gain New Experience
Pro bono work can be a great opportunity to learn. For more experienced attorneys, it’s a chance to handle a different type of case. For junior attorneys, who don’t yet have much autonomy, taking on pro bono work allows you to get into the courtroom and obtain valuable experience appearing before judges, building client relationships, arguing motions, etc. Here’s a great article in the ABA Journal about several attorneys’ experiences with pro bono work.

Discover New Opportunities
Pro bono work is a great way to network and ultimately explore new opportunities. You can meet people with different backgrounds and interests, and who would not otherwise enter your daily world or work. It can lead to new business by connecting you with local business leaders or others in need of services; new professional opportunities, like serving as a board member for a nonprofit; or simply lead to new friends. Regardless of whom you end up meeting, chances are the experience will benefit you in some way.

Work on Issues That Interest You
Maybe you’re already in your absolute dream job and work on issues that you feel passionate about. If so, that’s great! Sadly, for many people, that’s not the case. Pro bono work offers such a wide variety of opportunities, you’ll likely be able to find an issue that legitimately interests you. If you’re wondering what kinds of opportunities exist near you, check out the ABA’s Directory of Pro Bono Programs.

It’s Not the Time-Sucker You Think It Is
Because most pro bono cases do not contain complex legal or factual issues, the amount of time you invest in the work tends to be relatively small. Most clients simply need a lawyer to evaluate their legal rights and present their case.

You’ll Be Happy You Did It
Pro bono work is very rewarding. Studies show that helping others makes people feel happier, and pro bono work is no exception. We are social creatures – biologically predisposed toward creating social connections – and pro bono work gives us the opportunity to make social connections through engaging in service to others. I think we’re also happier when we engage in pro bono work because we know it’s the right thing to do – a chance to practice kindness in a world that can often be unforgiving. There’s a lot to be said for that.

Whatever pro bono work you decide to take on, it always helps if you have more time to do it. JurisDOC can help save you time in your practice by making it easier and faster to generate pleadings and other legal documents. The software also helps you tabulate billable hours (for attorneys and staff) and manage invoicing and receivables.

You can learn more about JurisDOC at our website, and, to make you a little bit happier, we’ll let you test the software through a free trial.


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