Digitise Each Day To Keep Resignations at Bay
Are you an entirely paperless law firm (both on and off-site)? If so, congratulations! You needn’t read any further.
If, however, like the vast majority of firms, you continue to receive post every day, or you pay gigantic archiving costs, or paper is piled up on the desks in your offices (or maybe all 3!?), then this will definitely be worth a few minutes of your time.
Put simply, the paper in your organisation costs you time and money; it creates significant data risks; and, because it ties people to the office, it could be the cause of resignations.
Here then are our top 3 compelling reasons for digitising your documents expertly and quickly:
1. Saving money
Fact 1: Your lawyers are both your ‘money-makers’ and your most expensive resource.
Fact 2: You most likely use a document or case management system.
Fact 3: The optimum scenario is for all documentation (be it the daily post, email attachments, returned searches etc.) to be correctly indexed against the correct matter in ‘the system’ ASAP.
Anything short of that, one way or another, is simply haemorrhaging cash. Scenarios include:
- Lawyers having to index (or, even worse, scan and allocate) their own post.
- Post never getting scanned at all, leading to half-digital / half-paper files and ultimately, higher storage and archiving costs, not to mention the wasted time.
- More office space than is actually needed – because to access your post in a timely fashion you need to be at your desk.
Fact 1: Paper documents are easier to lose, damage, or steal than electronic copies.
Fact 2: Once an electronic copy is in your case/document management system, it is password protected at least once (at PC level) and often twice (at system level).
Fact 3: Once digitised, a document is not only factually more secure, it is demonstrably more secure. In other words, you can demonstrate to the SRA, auditors, clients, insurance providers, etc., that your document management systems are robust.
Anything short of an auditable post room operation that takes ownership of the daily post from the moment it arrives in the building until it is digitised (and then either securely stored or destroyed) presents a data risk you could easily do without.
3. Retaining and attracting talent
If 100% of your talented employees (current and future) are itching to get back into the office full-time, the following may not apply, otherwise, read on:
Fact 1: The vast majority of employees favour either an entirely remote or a partially remote role, with just 4% wishing to return to the office full-time.
Fact 2: Most businesses (78%) are able (and happy) to offer that level of flexibility and will attract some of the best talent by doing so.
Fact 3: The systems you will need to facilitate effective remote working are going to be far less costly to your business than a ‘brain drain’.
Given the statistics on what employees now seek in terms of working patterns, failing to build flexible working practices into your firm is simply waving goodbye to a whole heap of talent, be it retaining existing employees or attracting new ones.
In order to facilitate remote working and, therefore, flexibility, you will need to invest in systems and processes. In the legal sector effective and daily digitisation should be at the very top of the agenda given the timeliness and nature of our work.
As with any business transformation, a commitment to daily digitisation requires an element of investment.
The choices are:
- A lot of admin time – in terms of your people doing slow manual work.
- A sizeable cost – if you choose to outsource the function entirely.
- A bit of both – utilising customised software to speed the job along.
- When the alternative is increased risk, higher overall costs and, (following C-19) an inability to attract/retain the best people in the market, any of the above alternatives start to make a lot of practical sense.
Author: Tom Bailey, PostPartner