Calendar Management Tips
If your only legal calendar is the giant paper one on your desk that’s full of scratched-out dates and phone call doodles in the margins, it’s time to do yourself a favor and upgrade to a better process.
Cloud-based calendar software allows you to update your calendar from anywhere with any device and help your remote employees stay in the loop for every important update.
Calendar management will help you save time in your work day, increasing efficiency, decreasing stress about priorities, and facilitating effective collaboration. Let’s look at how attorneys can use calendar software and integrations to streamline workflows and better manage rules and deadlines.
1. Efficiently manage deadlines
One of the most important responsibilities as a lawyer is to hit all the filing deadlines. That means you need a legal calendaring system that makes it easy for you to efficiently encourage collaboration and manage your court deadlines.
Automated reminders and calendar invites
Tools found in legal practice management software can help you manage deadlines in your calendar. Set up automated reminders for an upcoming deadline to be notified days in advance so that you won’t miss any filing dates.
Use calendar invites to ensure every team member knows when an important meeting is coming up. You can even use various colors to mark a different client for events, and save the information you regularly use to create calendar events. After a while, you’ll find the calendar configuration that works best for your team to communicate.
And one of the most helpful tools in cloud-based calendar management is the automatic calculation of the statute of limitation. You don’t have to worry about accidentally counting the days wrong in a paper calendar because your cloud-based calendar tools do it for you.
LawToolBox is a court and rules deadline management provider that syncs with popular legal calendaring systems like Rocket Matter, Microsoft Outlook, and Google.
Their software reduces your risk of malpractice claims by automatically updating your court deadlines into your calendar service. With LawToolBox, you can automate rules-based calendaring for case actions in state and federal courts in the US. Plus, deadlines are automatically updated when the court rules change.
There also may be times when you want to use customizable rule sets. LawToolBox helps you customize your specific case as needed by removing, modifying, or hiding irrelevant events.
2. Monitor task progress
When mapping out a case from beginning to end, you need to assign tasks for each lawyer or paralegal to complete for each stage of the legal process. Powerful legal calendar tools let you assign tasks to your team from inside the calendar.
Give certain tasks priority by assigning them due dates. This highlights which tasks need to be done first. You can receive email notifications when your employees finish projects, allowing you to better monitor matter progress. To create a productive, efficient schedule, assign yourself tasks from the calendar so you can prioritize your work.
If you want to be able to filter through your tasks, use tags to assign them by client or matter. That way, if you want to focus on one client or see what else needs to be done for a particular case, you can see upcoming or overdue tasks by clicking on the corresponding tag.
3. Seamlessly track time
Time and billing can be a real thorn in a lawyer’s side, but you can use your legal calendaring tools to monitor both your hourly and flat fee billing. When you use a comprehensive legal practice management software, you can bill for the time in your tasks with timers that start when you open a document. Or, you can manually add the time after completing your task.
You can also capture billable hours from your calendar. (With Rocket Matter’s Bill-As-You-Work technology, you can track billable time during or after an event that has taken place.) You can even submit time for certain attendees in calendar events. This feature helps you track your exact billable hours (if you bill hourly) or better understand the profitability of different case types and clients if you bill at a flat rate.
4. Communicate with clients
A robust legal calendar makes it easier to communicate with your clients. Use a legal CRM like Law Ruler to automate the intake process and set up appointments. Law Ruler syncs with the calendar system that you use so you can automate appointment setting. Not having to play email tag trying to find a time that works for you both? That’s a big win.
Law Ruler lets you send your clients a link with all of your open times available. It’s easy for them just to click and reserve the time slot that works. You’ll never accidentally book a client for the same time slot because, well, Law Ruler won’t let you. These appointments automatically sync with your Google, Outlook, and practice management calendars—you’ll never miss when a client schedules a meeting.
Plus, you can send automated reminders to your clients that an important meeting is coming up. Send them via email or text, and your clients have the option to cancel or reschedule appointments as needed. This takes out the admin work of scheduling, allowing you to focus on the high-priority legal work at hand.
5. Must-have calendar integrations
Calendar integrations with your legal practice management software make it easy to manage your schedule. Look for software that syncs with Google Calendar and Outlook, so you never miss an important calendar event or deadline.
Google and Outlook calendars are powerful tools for docketing. You can keep everyone on the same page with recurring events to keep track of weekly meetings, and they receive email reminders of when the meeting is about to start. Plus, you can organize events in the day from low to high priority, meaning everyone knows what to complete first.
Create matter-specific calendars so that everyone can add events or tasks as needed. Then, they can look at that calendar to see what’s left to do in a specific matter. And when you use practice management software that integrates with Google or Outlook, you can sync them up to use data from both sources.
Rocket Matter streamlines legal calendaring.
Make the most of your legal calendaring by choosing a practice management software that offers integrations to simplify your scheduling and court deadline management. Rocket Matter streamlines legal calendaring with integrations to all the tools that you need, including
- Microsoft 365
With Rocket Matter, you can use tasks created in your calendar to bill for the time that goes straight onto invoices. Never miss a billable hour again.
Rocket Matter’s internal messaging tools make it easy to create an event while you’re talking about it with your co-workers. Simply type in verbiage like, “Schedule depo for Wednesday at 9 a.m.” A prompt will appear to add the event to your calendar.
To learn why our clients say that “Rocket Matter demonstrates an excellent understanding of the business needs of law firms,” schedule a demo with us today.