It can be a tricky balance for lawyers – clock your required billable hours (usually in the thousands) while producing top-quality work. This can be difficult, especially when just starting your legal career, because there’s a lot to learn as you go.
A skill that isn’t necessarily taught in law school is how to maximize productivity when working on non-billable tasks. This type of ability, learned with the right tools, makes a lawyer incredibly valuable to a firm, and something that can be implemented throughout the company.
Here are three ways lawyers can maximize their productivity in order to get as many billable hours as possible.
Maybe the most important part of maximizing billable hours is to track all your time. After all, how can you get the most from your time spent working if you don’t account for all of it?
Time-tracking software is an important tool for law firms. It’s a simple way of increasing productivity and profits. There are a lot of different solutions out there, but a very popular one for legal professionals is TimeSolv. It helps those working in law firms track their time from anywhere, stay on budget, organize their hours, and much more. Plus, it helps lawyers with invoicing, managing documents and integrating with ABA billing codes.
Take the stress out of tracking your time manually in order to meet your required hours by having a software do it for you.
Template Automation Solutions
Legal professionals have to create hundreds of documents a week, from contracts to client presentations to legal memos. These tasks account for a lot of non-billable time – writing someone’s will can be billed, but formatting the clauses cannot.
And yet document creation solutions are not often utilized by enough firms.
Starting from scratch or reusing old documents each instance is a waste of time and efforts. The answer is to have templates in place with a template management system to keep them organized. With a template management system in place, firm documents are centralized and new versions are maintained in one place for quick, consistent looking documents each time.
Accuracy is another important factor when it comes to templates because the layout is created for you – you just need to plug in the variables. This ends up being way more efficient than any other method.
Staying organized may seem like an obvious point, but it’s an umbrella for a few best practices that lawyers should follow in order to maximize their time.
Don’t wait until Friday at 5:00pm to calculate your billable time for the week. The task in and of itself could end up taking longer than necessary, or you could forget something from the beginning of the week. If you take a few minutes at the end of each work day to document your billable time, you might even be able to make happy hour on Friday.
Another best practice is to not only count the time spent on billable tasks, but also the non-billable ones. If you realize you’ve spent a significant amount of time on something non-billable, you’ll be able to assess a better way of going about that task.
The expression “time is money” means a lot for legal professionals who are required to bill a minimum number of hours. Make sure you’re getting the most out of your workday by utilizing the above solutions.
For more information on document automation solutions to help your firm save time and improve productivity, please visit our website.