By LEAP Legal Software, AAML NJ Silver Sponsor
Law firm owners and senior partners are responsible for ensuring that their practices are running at the highest levels of efficiency to maximize profitability. It is no secret that consistent profits and cashflow are what allow law firms to continue to provide their clients with high-quality legal services. In the face of the legal skills shortage, there has never been a better time for New Jersey family law firms to assess their business and optimize their resources. This article covers the four easy changes New Jersey matrimonial attorneys can implement today to optimize for consistent cashflow while mitigating feeling the impacts of the legal skills shortage.
Focus on Billable Tasks by Leveraging Automation
According to a recent study, 43% of law firm fee earners reported spending more than 35% of their time working on non-billable tasks. These manual workflows cost law firms thousands of dollars every week in missed revenue. Additionally, it can cause staff members to become frustrated as they have to stay later to provide case updates, complete time sheets, and work with other staff members who were busy throughout the day. As a solution, New Jersey family law firms can implement legal automation software to digitize and streamline the manual tasks that hinder their staff from focusing on billable work during standard business hours. Instead of working longer hours to compensate for lost time, firm staff can complete their work faster, which also helps them take on more cases in the same amount of time to improve the firm’s overall revenue and financial health. Workflow automation that matrimonial attorneys should look for in a software solution includes:
- Matter creation and management
- Email and correspondence
- Document creation and management
- Time tracking
- Billing and invoicing
Establish Flexible Work Options
Another major expense for New Jersey law firms is maintaining adequate office space. Rent, utilities, and resources can create high overhead costs that impact how a practice can reinvest the money they earn. A way to avoid overspending on office resources is by establishing hybrid and remote work options. As law firms spend less money each month to accommodate their staff in person, they add more cushion between their revenue and operating expenses.
Hybrid and remote work options present additional benefits to a law firm. 50% of legal hiring managers report that many legal professionals expect remote work options and actively seek job opportunities that offer the flexibility if their current role doesn’t fit their needs. This shift means that New Jersey family law firms can reduce their current operating costs by providing their staff with flexible work conditions so they can maintain their current people resources and not spend money on recruiting new top legal talent.
Develop New Revenue Streams
Another benefit to increasing flexibility around staff location is the opportunity to begin servicing new jurisdictions and areas of law that may not have been possible in the past. For example, a New Jersey family law firm that expands its recruitment efforts can bring in the top attorneys in other counties or even states to increase its reach. They can even begin to service new practice areas and take on more cases if attorneys are licensed and experienced outside of family law. These opportunities create new revenue streams without the added cost of bigger or additional office spaces and commuter benefits.
Of course, this cannot be achieved without the right legal software to provide all staff members with real-time case information to view and provide updates, collaborate with staff and clients, and time-tracking tools for accurate billing and invoicing. Cloud-based software offers the accessibility and security needed to seamlessly implement these revenue streams without increasing current resources. Improve Transparency with Staff Members Ultimately, the best thing a New Jersey family law firm can do is be transparent with its staff members to establish open dialogues. Senior attorneys and partners in the practice should have regular firm meetings and one-on-one check-ins with junior and support staff to discuss potential changes, develop a career plan, and set individual and group expectations to help mitigate staff uncertainty. By leveraging legal software to automate manual tasks, the firm’s senior members will have more time to dedicate to these check-ins and show their commitment to developing a transparent and supportive culture without asking them to make up this time by working after business hours.
It is best practice to review law firm operations to identify ways to reduce operational and overhead expenses while improving firm productivity. New Jersey family law firms that implement the right legal cloud software solution to eliminate inefficiencies, reduce spending, improve employee retention, and create new revenue streams to improve cash flow are setting themselves up for even greater success. The LEAP legal practice productivity solution is the only fully-integrated, cloud-based solution that provides New Jersey family law firms with everything they need to run a productive and profitable business from anywhere, at any time. See how LEAP can help optimize your family law firm’s operations today!