Taking risks is not what they teach in law school. However, most attorneys take the positive risk of starting a small law firm. This task requires a lot of hard work and due diligence such as picking the right small law firm billing software. This task is one way to improve billing efficiency.
Hours in the Office aren’t Always Billable Hours
One way to improve efficiency is by getting a handle on time management. Many attorneys and paralegals track their entire time in the office. The goal isn’t to account for their billable hours. It’s also to determine how they spend their non-billable hours. By analyzing the non-billable time, attorneys and paralegals can see how and where they spend the chuck of time. This allows attorneys to refocus their priorities to make money, not waste money.
Look for Opportunities to Give Non-Billable Hours to Someone Else
It important to keep track of non-billable and billable hours. This helps support staff contributes to the completion of non-billable tasks. This gives attorneys a way to determine how time is spent that they aren’t getting paid to do. One way to improve efficiency is to give support staff the non-billable work. This will allow attorneys and paralegals to make more money because they are focused on tasks they can include in billable hours.
Place Non-Billable Hours in a Different Category
Most small firms use codes to denote billable hours. Sometimes they can include non-billable hours with billable hours. One example is using a different code for email and phone communication. Choose to break hours into subcategories to improve time management. For example, professional development and marketing should have separate subcategories.
Use Simple Invoices for Clients
Some small firms have complicated invoices that seem like a bill within a bill. These complicated invoices are too hard for many clients to understand. This can cause them to question whether they are getting billed for important work. Complicated invoices mean clients are less likely to make timely payments because they are questioning the bill. Simple and easy-to-understand invoices allow attorneys to get paid faster.
Avoid Constant Write Downs when Billing Clients
It’s very easy for attorneys to get into the habit of writing down bills without clients prodding them to do so. It may be goodwill to write down billable hours. However, it can decrease the value of an attorney’s work. Instead of writing down billable hours, wait and provide them with a simple invoice.
Legal Technology is Makes Improving Efficiency Easier
Attorneys will find a lot of accounting and billing software to fit their needs and improve efficiency. However, they must pick one that is especially designed for attorneys. It must include things unique to attorneys needs and ethics in addition to e-billing compliance. For solo practices, these tips may sound like way too much to do. However, it is the first step to meeting business goals. These tips are also the way small law firms grow.