The average adult spends ten minutes a day looking for something they lost.
So it makes sense for any business, especially one with lots of paperwork like a law firm, to organize their documents in the clearest, most accessible way possible. Paper documents are easy to misplace if someone forgets to file them in the correct place right away—but paperless document management tools ensures your files stay organized, complete, secure, and accessible from anywhere.
When you choose to go paperless with your legal practice, your firm will:
- Save time by improving document organization
- Streamline workflows for sending, receiving, and collecting signatures on documents
- Reduce daily operational costs associated with printing and mailing
- Ensure your team can access (and search for) key matter documents from anywhere
- Create a more eco-friendly workspace
- And more
Interested, but not ready to take the plunge? Check out these six benefits of running a paperless law firm.
1. Better document organization saves you time
Everyone wants more time in their day.
Running a paperless law office gives you that time.
Instead of an employee tearing apart their desk for that FL-100 they swore a client already filled out, they’ll be able to quickly find it on their computer’s practice management software. Plus, everyone in your company will be able to access these files (so long as you’ve granted that team member the right permissions). Instead of needing to track down the only paper copy or using a machine to duplicate it, an employee can access the file directly from your practice management system.
To make document organization effective, implement a clear naming system for your files. This way, everyone knows how to save files to the system and find what they need. If you’re not sure where to start with this, consult Rocket Matter’s file structure and file naming conventions for a paperless legal practice.
2. Going paperless makes the process easier for your client
Every law firm hopes to make stressful situations easier for their clients. Going paperless means you don’t accidentally lose any important files or waste their time by spending five minutes trying to find a form they’ve previously filled out.
When you use paperless practice management software, your clients don’t even have to come to your office. Secure file sharing means that your clients can receive, send, and sign documents securely from their home computers or phones and send them straight to you. They don’t even have to add any stress to their day by driving to your office. (Unless, of course, they just want to spend some time with their favorite lawyers!)
3. A paperless law firm spends less money
On average, an office worker uses 10,000 pieces of printed paper per year. And out of all that paper, 45% of it goes in the trash. Even though there are some upfront costs to consider, there’s no doubt that paperless law firms save money over the long run. When you go paperless, these are just some of the costs deducted from your law firm’s budget:
- An expensive industrial printer
- Thousands of reams of paper
- Three-hole punches (if there’s no paper, there’s no need for punched holes)
And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Take a look around your office: anything to do with paper, you don’t have to buy anymore (cue celebratory music here!).
When you decide to go paperless, there will be a few startup costs. For example, you’ll need to digitize documents to upload all your current client’s data to your practice management software. This means you’ll either buy a scanner (if you don’t have one already) and assign this task to one of your employees, or hire a company to digitize documents for you. Regardless, the other benefits you’ll gain will quickly overshadow these costs as time goes on.
4. Allows your firm to work from home
A study from Tracking Happiness shows that remote work increases employee happiness by 20%. Happy employees are also 13% more productive, so when you go paperless, you should look for a cloud-based practice management software that lets your employees access the documents they need from anywhere.
The right software can allow your attorneys and staff to work on a more flexible hybrid model, and you save money and increase efficiency because they’re also more productive with their time.
5. Practice management software automates simple tasks and reduces redundancies
Certain tasks at your law office seem so easy that a computer could do them. When you implement practice management software, simple tasks become automated. You can create legal documents in seconds with client information already stored in the software. This way, you don’t spend hours hand-writing a client’s address over and over again.
And when you use the right practice management software, employees won’t accidentally work on the same document at the same time without knowing it. Redundant work is removed because employees can see the status of a document in your practice management software.
6. Paperless law firms save trees
Recycling paper actually uses more harmful fossil fuels than throwing the paper into a landfill. So if you really want to do right by the environment, consider not using any paper to begin with. When you become a paperless law office, you’re generating far less harmful greenhouse gasses and doing your part to protect the health of the planet.
Rocket Matter gives you a rocket boost in the right direction
Make the switch to a paperless law firm with the help of Rocket Matter’s legal practice management software.
Rocket Matter’s document creator notifies you instantly of any missing information so your documents stay error-free. And with our seamless Microsoft 365 integration, you can upload directly to Rocket Matter from Word and Excel for easy document management. You can even seamlessly track your time as you work on documents through Rocket Matter.
Making the switch to paperless operations takes some investment, but our experienced software team is here to make the process as seamless as possible. Schedule a free demo today to see how our legal management software leads to higher profits and happier clients.