This post originally appeared on the NetDocuments blog on March 17th and is reprinted with permission here.
Remote work is here to stay—and not just because of COVID-19. The “always on” business mentality that prevails in most areas of the world is causing higher employee burnout rates than ever, with Deloitte noting that 84% of millennials have already reported burnout at some point in their short careers.
It’s no surprise then that as younger generations are tackling leadership roles they are also questioning the wisdom of traditional work habits. In fact, in Upwork’s recent release regarding their third-annual Future Workforce Report, Upwork CEO Stephane Kasriel noted, “We know already that the most in-demand professionals place high value on flexibility,” and as the younger workforce continues to grow, employees “will increasingly have managers who not only understand this priority but will themselves expect it.”
This is why, pandemic or not, giving your legal team flexibility is crucial in 2020 and beyond. Firms who have embraced the tools and technologies that make remote work easy are already reaping the benefits and building their competitive advantage for the future.
Here’s three simple ways your firm can support remote work today and for the upcoming workforce:
1. Develop a Cloud-First Approach
Digging through documentation that can only be accessed in the office is not the kind of efficiency that attorneys want or need in order to serve clients best. Additionally, on-premises systems can make remote work difficult for IT teams if they need to step in for support.
When your firm’s systems are in the cloud, everyday employees and IT teams alike can access a suite of cloud-based tools that support efficient, effective work—whether in the office, at home, or on-the-go. Many NetDocuments customers who adopt a cloud-first approach note these three benefits:
- Centralized Work: Clunky, slow VPNs are a thing of the past. When everything is in the cloud, it’s easier and faster for attorneys to find what they need and IT to support it.
- Remote Access: Cloud systems means work can be accessed anywhere on any device, keeping attorneys and administrators productive no matter where they are.
- Enhanced Collaboration: When employees can access work from anywhere in the world, they can more efficiently provide feedback on other attorney’s work and communicate with clients quickly.
To learn more about why firms are moving to the cloud, download our guide, Why Are Law Firms Moving to the Cloud?
2. Build Your Best-in-Class Tech Stack
When working remotely, you want the experience to be seamless. That seamless experience begins with an integrated tech stack.
Choosing a core, cloud-based system as a platform to support the rest of your tech is the first place to start. As the backbone of any firm, document management systems (DMS) are quickly becoming the go-to platform for many firms.
No matter which DMS platform you select, ensure it is cloud-based with an open API and robust partner ecosystem like NetDocuments, which will allow you to integrate the following common tools (and more) to increase efficiency and automation across the firm:
- Practice Management: Keep everything in sync when you integrate your practice management platform with your DMS.
- Billing: Sync your billing system with the DMS so your team doesn’t have to bounce between systems to record their work.
- Analytics: Get insights into platform use statistics, track documents, and monitor security from centralized systems.
- Artificial Intelligence (AI): AI comes in many forms. Choose from any number of tools to create the tech stack that fits your unique needs.
3. Work Securely from Anywhere
Security can be one of the biggest concerns with remote work because increased flexibility between tools, devices, people, locations, etc., can lead to increased risk. For attorneys who are ethically bound to protect much of their data, this is a critical issue.
What you may not know is that many of the tools that make remote work possible actually deliver more security to your firm and attorneys, not less.
NetDocuments, for instance, helps teams get the mobility they want with the security they need. Access rights give you control over who sees what while instantaneous backups provide peace of mind. Individual document encryption ensures that even if one of your documents is hacked, the rest of your content won’t suddenly become accessible to the hacker. Meanwhile, NetDocuments has your back by staying on top of all major compliance regulations so you don’t have to worry about them.
If You Fail to Plan, Plan to Fail
If the COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated anything to business leaders, it’s that companies who are prepared for remote work are the ones who will continue to remain productive and profitable in even the most difficult circumstances. And, while there may not be a pandemic every day, there will be future employees who demand employers provide the ability to work remote — even choosing the flexibility over other benefits.
Don’t sacrifice talent and profit in the future. Start planning your move to remote work by scheduling a free consultation with a legal technology expert to assess your team’s remote-readiness, and learn more about how you can even implement the solution while being remote! Call NetDocuments at (866) 638-3627 today.