How Lawyers Use Tech to Be More Productive

Technology is crucial to lawyers’ ability to drive value for their firm. Lawyers who make the most of technological tools, apps and software are more productive, and more efficient firms are better poised for business growth and success. 

Of course, one size doesn’t fit all with legal tech. To improve productivity, firms need to choose software tools that best serve their practice areas and clients.

Benchmarking your peers

A good starting point is to explore what similarly situated firms are doing. A new benchmark report examines how firms are using technology to be more productive and make better business decisions.

The report focuses on how lawyers’ practice areas drive their workflows and processes. Part 1 of the report offers a glimpse into the technology tools and software making the biggest impact in three areas: time tracking, communications and collaboration.

Time tracking

In examining how lawyers track their time and which features increase the amount of time captured, a key takeaway involved passive time-tracking tools. These tools operate in the background, capturing lawyers’ work while they use a software program. Report data showed that 25% of respondents who used these tools recorded an extra 25 hours of billable time, per person, in 2021. This underscores how accurate time tracking is crucial to driving firm profitability.

Communications

The report found that the number of communications lawyers send to their clients varies significantly across practice areas. Clients in certain practice areas require much higher levels of interaction.

Report data like this is helpful because if your firm focuses on family law, for example, then investing in technology to streamline lawyers’ communications workflow is likely worth it. But if your firm concentrates on trust and estate law — which sees, comparatively, fewer client communications — you may want to prioritize other areas for tech investments.

Collaboration

Finally, the report showed differences in collaboration across practice areas. It noted lawyers created and shared fewer documents with clients in transactional practices than in family law, for example.

Think of all this data as other firms paving the path to productivity for your firm. Choosing which technologies can best help your firm operate more efficiently and effectively can be overwhelming. With a benchmark report as your guide, some of that work is already done, and you are ready to make an informed decision about your technology investment.