There are numerous ways to run a business, and the processes we have in place are how things get accomplished. Within the legal field, there is an important group who works behind the scenes to support in-house legal teams in delivering excellent service to clients: legal operations (or legal ops).
Legal ops teams handle important aspects of the business such as:
- Financial management — planning legal spend and managing budgets
- Data analytics — analyzing performance data to improve future decisions
- Strategic planning — aligning legal team goals with larger stakeholder priorities
- Information governance — ensuring compliance and managing corporate risk
- Organizational design — managing team setup, talent and performance
- Innovation — using technology to implement new ideas and create more efficient processes
Legal ops teams manage some of these departments’ toughest challenges. In a recent survey, legal operations professionals named their top challenges as:
- Business process improvements
- Cost containment and savings
- Staying abreast of law department technology
In the past, legal ops has focused on risk management and keeping outside counsel costs down. Over time, legal ops has shifted its gaze toward strategic initiatives and improving internal processes.
Why Legal Operations?
Legal professionals are often responsible for managing their own administrative tasks to support clients—which are sometimes too numerous to count. These admin tasks can take up significant time and money.
By shifting some of these time-consuming activities to a dedicated cross-functional team like legal ops, legal professionals can spend more time focusing on strategic initiatives that impact the business, such as closing more cases and increasing client satisfaction.
A Better Way to Operate: Legal Operations Management Software
With so many responsibilities and cross-functional teams to work with, many legal ops teams have turned to legal operations management software to run their business operations more effectively and efficiently. Legal ops software helps you manage:
- Legal spend
- And more
With the ability to keep all communications and resources within a single location, legal ops teams receive a number of key benefits.
- Increased efficiency and productivity.
Managing outside counsel can be time consuming, as it requires more than one dedicated team member. Some organizations don’t have the resources to dedicate an employee specifically to this task. Plus, balancing an existing workload can cause work quality to suffer.
With legal operations management software, you can streamline important, repetitive tasks like billing directly to the software to free up time and focus on more important initiatives. Additionally, workflow features repeat tasks automatically, resulting in saved time and money.
- Boost cost savings.
Legal operations management software has built-in expense tracking features that allow you to monitor costs of any kind. This helps with managing the department budget, tracking accruals and forecasting through an up-close look at all incoming and outgoing funds.
Armed with all the information you need, you can work directly with the finance team to identify spending trends, as well as potential cost savings and efficiency opportunities. Legal operations management software provides budget and cost management insight across different practice areas, matters or matter types. It also naturally encourages time and expense tracking with features that establish billing rates for users and cases, tax rates and pro-forma invoices automatically.
- Better understand data.
With so much data required in legal case and matter management, it can be hard to keep a pulse on all the information going in and out of the organization. With reporting dashboards and analytics tools within your operations software, you can view data from a new lens. Quantifiable data analytics that provide metrics and measurements help you make more informed decisions and improve processes.
With a single location to store all your important information, you can also use the software to create a records management program complete with retention schedules, policies and processes.
- Streamline operations.
Legal ops team members are always thinking about how to make things easier and better for the legal professionals they support. One easy win with legal operations software is the ability to collect, store and organize documents and content relevant to a given matter.
In addition, the platform allows you to automate the generation of standard forms, letters, contracts and other case-related correspondence. This seamless access to a comprehensive legal and departmental knowledge base containing templates, policies, memos, processes and more can help boost your team’s productivity. There’s no need to look multiple places to find what you need—and you always have the right information just when you need it.
Legal Operations Software Creates a Well-Oiled Machine
Legal operations management software allows you to build a system that works for you, not the other way around. Complete with reporting and analytics tools, a centralized knowledge base, automated workflows and expense tracking and budgeting, you’ll have everything you need to help your legal organization become a well-oiled machine.
Legal operations management software is the fully customizable solution every organization can use to help their operations run seamlessly and better support their in-house and outside counsels the way they were meant to.
It’s this tailored approach that sets Legal Files apart from other legal software providers. With a dedication to customer feedback and continuous improvement, Legal Files ensures your legal operations perform the way you expect.
“We’ve set it up so that the Legal Files notification system will automatically send reminders to people at our branches—people who don’t even use Legal Files. We save a tremendous amount of time not having to do follow up, repeatedly calling or emailing someone. Legal Files does that for us, allowing us to focus on more meaningful tasks.”
Samantha Corso, Legal Operations Manager
Heritage Crystal Clean, a Legal Files Client
With more than 30 years of experience supporting organizations across a number of industries, Legal Files gives teams the customization and personalization they need to focus on accomplishing more activities each day with less resources and time.
Request a demo to learn more about how we help organizations like yours manage what matters most.