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In today’s technology-driven world, it takes a lot to remain competitive for Toronto law firms. And there are so many new and innovative Practice Management Software programs. Your staff will really excel if they have the right practice management software to work with. They’ll get tasks done faster with less stress and labor. This results in a more efficient workforce that better represents your Canadian law firm.
The hard part is deciding which program to choose. Smaller practices leave this up to their IT department, but this may not be the right strategy for your law firm. Often your administrative staff knows a lot more about what works and what doesn’t. Your IT people might know all about computers and servers but nothing about legal software programs.
Law firms can benefit by working with an IT Consultant. They have so much experience in software and hardware, so they can be a valuable resource. Do work with a consultant who is familiar with the legal industry and stays current on all the newest practice management software available.
A good IT consultant can answer your tough questions. They should be able to fill you in on the pros and cons of each practice management software program. This can save you lots of time and money.
Importing your database will most likely be the biggest hurdle. If you work with a managed IT services group like TekTonic, then they’ll handle this whole ordeal from start to finish. This can assure that everything is done right and it can take a big job off your plate. If you have an in-house IT department, then they should be able to get the job done during evening and weekends so that your workflow is not impeded.
Your accounting and billing software is an important function. How will the new practice management program work with it? Are there going to be conflicts? Is there any way to test the two programs to make sure they’re compatible? These are just a few of the concerns that attorneys have. In the world of billable hours, you can’t afford to have glitches and issues cropping up all the time. Everything needs to be compatible so your transition goes perfectly. That’s not too much to expect from a professional managed IT services group.
If you’re worried about doing away with paper documents, don’t be. Many law practices are moving in that direction. But with so many documents to deal with each day, you’ll need ample online data storage for your documents. Everything from emails to invoicing can be securely stored in onsite and offsite Cloud servers. This will save paper, shipping costs, and lots of time. Online storage also allows you to access your documents from anywhere there’s a secure internet connection. This improves productivity and flexibility for you and your employees.
There are lots of those today but make sure they offer support. Ask if they have a 24/7 hotline. You need to know if support will cost extra. When you first begin to work with a new software program, your staff will have questions and problems. A managed services provider can handle things like this very well.
Below are a few of the best-known practice management solutions:
Security has become a big issue these days—especially for law firms. The recent data breach at Dropbox exposed 68 million records to hackers. Many law firms were using Dropbox on a daily basis. Now the Bar Association is saying that Dropbox isn’t safe anymore. They are disallowing all free cloud storage programs. Your new practice management software should have the best security built in. But your practice could benefit from other security programs and this would be a good time to integrate those.
The pricing structure should be easy to understand and transparent. You should be able to see what you’re paying and what you get with this price. How long will it be before you start to make back the cost of your new practice management software? Make sure you ask about the ROI.
Some of these questions are easy to answer and some are harder. That’s why you can benefit from working with a great Legal IT Consultant. You’ll have someone on board who understands what’s at risk and knows the answers to many of these questions. They’ll be able to make solid recommendations and prevent you from making costly errors.