Why would a lawyer go virtual? Cost. Work Life Balance. Solitude. Flexibility.
When we talk about reducing costs, we often look at expenses. Law firm expenses can range from rent and salaries to file folders, legal pads and pens. We hope you are getting a great deal on pens, but the TRUTH is, saving money on office supplies is NOT going to be the reason you stay in business.
The big ticket items - rent, salaries, insurance, taxes…these are things that make your overhead seem unbearable. Your efficiency and ability to bill (and get paid for) the time you spend also play a big role in whether your firm is financially successful, but that’s a topic for a different blog.
We understand that some law firms MUST have a physical presence, and not everyone can go virtual. But just in case you can, here are some things to think about.
If you are a solo attorney with no support staff, going virtual is easier for you. However, if you have even 1 staff member, you need to be sure that your remote locations will still enable you to work together, collaborate, and communicate easily on client matters.
- How will you save and share files?
- Will you rely on Cell phones, or VoIP and softphones?
- Will you provide cell phones to your staff?
- Will you pay for your remote staff high speed internet?
- Will you have an instant messaging system so you can quickly reach your remote staff?
- Will you use a cloud based practice management system so you have access to case details?
- Will you use a cloud based document management system?
- Will you use a cloud based Time, Billing & Accounting system?
- How will you get bills out, and where will clients mail payments?
- Will you have a P.O. Box?
- Where will you meet clients? If meeting clients at their home or office is not an option, are their executive office suites available in your area?
The foregoing list is not mean to dissuade you from going virtual – there are ways to accomplish everything on this list without paying rent for physical space. We just want you to think about what you will need, and how you will be organized.
Whether you are a seasoned attorney or a brand new lawyer, a virtual office could be the right fit for you. Interested? Contact Katie Kennedy. We can help you figure it all out.