Top Tips To Run A Virtual Law Firm
According to a recent report published in The Law Society Gazette, an estimated one-third of lawyers will be working in virtual firms by 2026. Just a few short years ago, the idea that a law firm could operate virtually would have seemed a little ludicrous. However, when remote working became mandatory during the pandemic, many legal professionals noticed the benefits of running a ‘virtual’ firm.
For example, virtual law firms tend to report higher levels of employee satisfaction, likely because employees can establish a better work-life balance. As such, it’s hardly surprising that companies offering hybrid or remote working opportunities report lower attrition rates, even during the great resignation.
Running a virtual firm can also save drastically on overhead costs, which is good news for those looking to conserve their funds or cut down on spending. Finally, the necessity of remote working during the pandemic accelerated the development of new technologies and software that make long-term remote easier than ever.
With that in mind, here are some tips you can use to run a digital law firm.
Invest in the right equipment.
While going remote does give you the chance to cut down on your annual overhead costs, it does come with a price tag – at least when you are in the early stages of the process. After all, you must ensure that all employees have access to the appropriate tools and equipment to get the job done.
In many cases, they must be able to replicate your pre-existing office environment in their home, as this will enable them to continue to carry out tasks to a high standard. As a result, you may want to allocate a portion of your budget to buying equipment such as computers, laptops, and other technological devices.
You should also offer to cover the costs of general office equipment, such as ergonomic chairs. While this may seem more of a luxury than a necessity, it’s important to take into consideration that legal professionals spend a lot of time at their desks. In fact, the average full-time lawyer will spend 49.9 hours a week at work. If they are not working safely and comfortably, this could lead to a range of health complications, alongside higher levels of stress. Conversely, “using an ergonomic chair can drastically improve your posture, reduce back pain and ultimately improve productivity,” according to Office Reality.
Work on your communication skills.
Communication lies at the core of any successful law firm – whether this relates to the internal communications between administrative staff and legal professionals, or the formation of attorney/client relationships. When going virtual, you lose the opportunity to enhance these relationships through face-to-face interaction. As such, you must find new ways to maintain high levels of communication.
Thankfully, there are various ways in which you can achieve this goal. For example, while you may have grown accustomed to using Zoom software to connect with friends, innovative platforms like Zoom “have made it possible for lawyers to collaborate and become closer than ever before. With video, audio, and real-time chat, the functionality of these tools has led to greater collaboration” across the board, according to a report in Business Law Today.
Outsource, outsource, outsource.
Outsourcing certain duties is one of the easiest ways to streamline your daily operations, which can make it much easier to operate a virtual firm. This way, your remote team is not met with an ever-growing list of tasks when they sign in each morning, resulting in low productivity and, eventually, burnout.
Furthermore, outsourcing allows you to establish your law firm as one of the best firms in the area – as all tasks are carried out by experts in the field, as opposed to somebody simply trying their best to complete a task. For example, when you hire a fractional CFO through FinOp Group, you’re putting your finances in the hands of an experienced professional – not a lawyer masquerading as an accountant. This will make it easier to manage all of your financial operations, from bookkeeping to tax planning.
At FinOp Group, our team of experienced CPAs provides full-service law firm accounting solutions, including tax planning, payroll, budgeting, and billing. This means you can focus on what truly matters, running a stellar law firm. Schedule your free consultation today!