Future-Proof Your Law Firm

Use the Cloud to Keep Up with the Pace of Technology

It’s no secret; technology has accelerated the pace of change – in work and in life. There are a few ways that your law firm can go about adapting to these changes.

You could:

1. Bury your head in the sand and insist on the traditional ways of doing things.

2. Throw money at the problem, amassing all the new software and gadgets available and hiring experts to teach you how to use everything.

3. Make a simple change to the way you do work and handle your data.

Of course, the third option is making the change over to using a cloud environment, such as Legal Workspace. Using the cloud is an easy way to set up your firm for any future tech innovations, in addition to the other advantages it promises, like security and flexibility.

Why the cloud allows for rapid change

When a law firm operates from on-site servers, it lacks the kind of agility that using a cloud environment can provide. For example, what would happen if your biggest client suddenly placed regulations on your firm? How would you go about making sure you could meet those requirements? How much time, effort, and money would it take to give them what they wanted?

And if you were able to pull it off, would the client still be there, waiting for you to bring your security to their level?

Taking advantage of law firm cloud services removes that worry. Legal Workspace, because it was created specifically for law firms, utilizes military-grade security for all of its clients and can accommodate special requests from firms who use its services. HIPAA compliance obligations and any other high-level security requirements can be quickly applied to ensure that your clients’ data is protected.

That kind of behind-the-scenes agility is important because it also allows you to make changes to the way you do business. For example, if you’re not already taking advantage of legal document generation automation to streamline your attorneys’ workloads, you can select one of the applications that is compatible with Legal Workspace, work with its team of experts to customize the program to your preferences, and increase your efficiency.

Beyond that, the simple fact is that workplace culture is changing. Many attorneys are putting in the same number – or even more – hours than they ever did before, but they’re not necessarily doing it from the office. A cloud work environment, like Legal Workspace, allows attorneys to access their workspace from anywhere, on any device, at any time. If an attorney has a big realization while watching their kid’s soccer game, they can grab their smartphone and get moving.

The future is in the cloud

When you migrate to the cloud, a big chunk of worry falls away. No fretting about your data security’s adequacy. No concern about making the right software and application choices. No restrictions for your attorneys with regard to when and where they choose to work.

Now, which of these three options sounds like the best strategy:

1. Stick to tradition and hope your firm remains viable?

2. Throw money at the problem and try to do it yourself?

3. Or, lean on experts to take care of your technology issues by using a cloud environment?

Who Wants Budget Stability? A New Year, Better Predictability

The year’s end is a time for reflection and projection. You look back at what happened over the past year, and you think about what the future holds. Some of this process is subjective, and some of it is speculation – but some of it is hard numbers.

Take your law firm’s budget, for example.

How was your IT spending in 2017? Did you stay within the parameters, or did you experience any major technological fall-out that caused you to dip into another line item?

What about next year? How’s your server holding up? Will this be the year be the one that results in multiple repair bills or the cost of a replacement server (and the associated migration costs)?

Good news: There is a way that you can stabilize your law firm’s IT budget for 2018. Migrate to a cloud environment, such as Legal Workspace, and you will experience predictable monthly costs instead of highly variable IT repair and maintenance bills.

Consistent bills, consistent budget

Because a cloud environment like Legal Workspace is constantly upgrading its software, servers, and security, those costs to your law firm – and that worry – can just disappear.

The responsibility is on Legal Workspace’s shoulders, not yours. No longer will you have to pay for upgrades. You won’t have to stretch a dying server’s viability until its last gasp. Instead, your data will be stored on up-to-date, state-of-the-art equipment.

You’ll simply pay for a predictable, unchanging monthly bill. Now that’s easy to budget.

Quicker client payments

Not only will you be able to stabilize your law firm’s IT budget, but you can utilize Legal Workspace’s tools to get paid faster, too.

Administrators can spend hours reviewing invoices. They might allocate a significant portion of their day to sharing invoicing information with attorneys – and attorneys might be wasting their time on clunky timekeeping and pre-billing. The Legal Workspace team can work with law firms to determine the best technology and processes for streamlining billing.

Working with Legal Workspace on this issue results in faster payment. As Diane Kuhre, firm finance manager for Davis Schilken, PC, puts it, “Since I can complete monthly billing in half the time, invoices get out the door in two days. The firm gets paid much more quickly now.”

 

All-in-one solution

Other headaches can fall by the wayside, too, when you start to use a cloud environment. Constantly adjusting to hackers’ increasingly adept and creative ways to penetrate law firms’ shields is a major annoyance – and it takes significant expertise (not to mention serious dollars) to protect your firm’s data adequately.

That’s one of the many reasons so many law firms now take advantage of a cloud environment for data storage. Law firms no longer need to worry about security updates or maintaining back-ups; it is all taken care of for you.l

Adopting the use of a cloud environment like Legal Workspace results in many benefits – not least a healthier bottom line. Just one simple decision can stabilize your IT budget, take away headaches about security and back-ups, and get your law firm paid more quickly.

Server or Cloud? A law firm deliberates

We get many calls every week from law firms that are debating between the cloud and maintaining local IT resources. Yesterday, we received a call that a law firm is losing productivity because of unexpected server downtime. Concerns about data loss overwhelm the managing partners. What if the server fails?

The law firm is being proactive and looking into solutions. One option is working with their IT vendor, which wants to upgrade their server hardware. But the estimate for that project is prohibitive: $15,000 for server hardware and 40 hours of work at $175 ($7,000). On top of that, they can expect the usual costs for network upkeep that come from quarterly updates, 6 hours of work every quarter ($4,200 annually), and monthly maintenance, four hours of work each month ($8,400 annually).

The managing partners wonder: What if there’s another way to protect our data and reliably keep our firm up and running? Is there a more sustainable option to stabilize costs and eliminate downtime?

There is.

It’s the cloud.

An instant productivity boost

The law firm has an IT administrator on staff who deals with server downtime and other day-to-day tech issues. From his arrival to his departure at the office, he spends every day running around troubleshooting. What would his day look like without the hassle of damage control? He could spend his time evaluating new technology, customizing legal applications, and training new employees — all in the service of maximizing billable hours.

Other, smaller firms have a slightly different IT problem: Attorneys and staff members have to figure out what to do when technology fails. Imagine that problem disappearing. They could get back to focusing on revenue-generating activities.

Were the law firm to migrate to a cloud environment, such as Legal Workspace, the IT administrator, attorneys, and staff members could reclaim their time. Legal Workspace’s data centers have a history of more than 14 years of 100% continuous uptime.

Wasted time eliminated.

More than convenience: Safety

That concern the managing partners have about data loss if the server fails? It’s a real problem that could occur whenever you use an onsite server. Cloud solutions such as Legal Workspace have geographically redundant data centers that render data safer in the cloud than it could ever be on an onsite server. Here’s a video that illustrates the difference between server and cloud security. Legal Workspace has advanced security measures in place, such as:

• Limited physical access to servers
• Staff that’s available to react if a problem occurs
• Firewalls with sophisticated detection system
• Advanced data encryption

Using a solution like Legal Workspace also allows law firms to provide the tightest security available to their clients. For example, a firm that works with healthcare providers will need to be HIPAA compliant. Legal Workspace has a HIPAA-compliant version of its cloud environment and will even sign a business associate agreement. Other special security mandates from financial institutions and government contractors are easy for a solution such as Legal Workspace to meet and exceed.

Security concerns eliminated.

What choice would you make?

What choice do you think the law firm made? Did they plunk down $21,000+ and upgrade their onsite server, or did they jump at the chance to advance both productivity and security by switching to a cloud environment? Did they decide to eliminate downtime and stabilize costs?

The choice seems pretty clear.

Q1 Newsletter: The Latest from Your Law Office in the Cloud

IN THIS ISSUE

Spring Referral Deal

 

Do you know a firm that could use Legal Workspace? If you refer a law firm to Legal Workspace we’ll send you a $100 visa gift card.

Send your referrals to info@legal-workspace.com.

Offer ends June 1, 2017.


2 Easy Ways Legal Workspace Helps Users Tighten Security

 

Law firms have an obligation to keep client data secure. As hacking becomes an ever-increasing threat to businesses of all sizes—especially those that store and transmit sensitive data—two options, Two-factor Authentication and Email Encryption, can help put up barriers.

Read the article >>


10 Tips To Streamline Case Management Software

 

Practice and Case Management applications empower attorneys to streamline their law firms. Over time, the databases need to be cleaned-up to preserve data integrity and accuracy. Here are 10 tips to keep your practice management database trim, relevant, and running at optimal speed.

Read the article >>

Feel free to reach out to our legal applications team to learn more about customizing, automating, or upgrading your applications.


Support Whenever You Need It!

 

Legal Workspace’s helpdesk is monitored by experienced engineers capable of resolving desktop, practice management, legal applications, or workstation problems quickly and efficiently.  Our staff will troubleshoot your problem using the latest remote support tools and escalate the call, if necessary, to a specialist to resolve critical issues.

Monday – Friday 7AM – 6PM (MST)     Call (877) 713-8302, option #2

Should you have an after-hours emergency, please call the support line and a member of our technical staff will return your call within one hour.  Please note that after-hours labor rates and minimums apply. (877) 713-8302 | helpdesk@legal-workspace.com


Make Legal Workspace Better

 

If you see opportunities for improvement in either the service we deliver or product enhancements we are always here to listen. Email your feedback to feedback@legal-workspace.com.

Work Smarter, Not Harder: June 2016 Newsletter

IN THIS ISSUE

Work smarter, not harder

 

Christine Anderson recently joined Legal Workspace as our Legal App Specialist. Christine has over a decade of experience optimizing efficiency and profitability for legal firms. While she is familiar with most legal software apps she is particularly well-versed in PC Law, TimeMatters, Juris, ProLaw, Bill for Time, and QuickBooks.

Whether you’re looking to streamline accounting or improve productivity, there’s an app for that.

Looking for a better way to streamline case management?

  • Christine recommends Amicus for smaller firms and TimeMatters for larger firms. Both programs offer comprehensive, efficient case management to help you stay ahead of the workflow.

Do you need a billing system that also handles full accounting and financial reporting?

  • Christine recommends PCLaw or Tabs3 for smaller law firms and Juris for larger firms. With fully integrated time entry, billing, payables, receivables, and management reports, both of these will help you capture more hours, maximize revenue, and control costs.

Looking for an all-in-one solution for billing, accounting, and case management?

  • Christine recommends ProLaw, a fully integrated, robust, highly customizable system that allows front and back office to share the same client and case data.

If you’re interested in learning more about how legal applications can support your firm, please reach out to Christine at CAnderson@Legal-Workspace.com.


Legal Workspace Featured in Westlaw

 

Westlaw is an online legal research service for law related materials and services. Legal Workspace CEO Joe Kelly’s article about data ownership was selected for inclusion in the Westlaw database. The article highlights data-ownership rights in the cloud. With free and low-cost cloud storage services, lawyers might not even own their intellectual property after they upload it to the cloud. As tempting as iCloud, Google Drive, Dropbox, or other sites may be, lawyers need to do their research first before uploading.
Read the article >>


Client Spotlight

 

Has Legal Workspace helped your practice? We want to hear all about it.
We’re looking for clients who can answer a few short questions about how the cloud has helped their firm.
The answers will be turned into a case study and will position you and your firm as technology leaders and illustrate how Legal Workspace helps support your firm. Email TStork@Legal-Workspace.com to learn more and get started!


Support Whenever You Need It!

 

Legal Workspace’s helpdesk is monitored by experienced engineers capable of resolving desktop and workstation problems quickly and efficiently. Our staff will troubleshoot your problem using the latest remote support tools and escalate the call, if necessary, to a specialist to resolve critical issues.

Monday – Friday 7AM – 6PM (MST) Call (877) 713-8302, option #2

Should you have an after-hours emergency, please call the support line and a member of our technical staff will return your call within one hour. Please note that after-hours labor rates and minimums apply. (877) 713-8302 | helpdesk@legal-workspace.com


Make Legal Workspace Better

If you see opportunities for improvement in either the service we deliver or product enhancements we are always here to listen. Email your feedback to feedback@legal-workspace.com

Referral Special

Refer a firm or 2 or 3…Do you know a law firm that needs Legal Workspace? When you refer a friend or collage to Legal Workspace we will help them succeed and you will get a free month of service! Send your referrals via email to feedback@legal-workspace.com

What’s Killing Your Law Firm’s Productivity?

According to LexisNexis, the majority of non-billable hours are spent on practice management or administrative tasks. Process and workflow automation is as important for law firms as it is for any industry. Although your “product” is not tangible, it is nevertheless measurable. The “commodity” produced by attorneys is knowledge. This knowledge is often in the form of advice given, agreements achieved and documents produced. However, the value of all of these is usually measured in time. Therefore, in order to remain competitive, maximize productivity and minimize costs, attorneys must manage proactively and strategically the production of the time commodity.

Time management is where case management software can be of great benefit and provide a significant return on investment.  

What if you could:

— Ensure that you never miss a deadline?

— Generate documents (and find them later) with only a couple of easy steps?

— Create billing entries from any task (documents, calendar, notes, research, etc.) with just one button?

— Quickly turn those time entries into invoices that can be sent via email for faster payment?

— Find any document, file, note, message, etc. with one global search field?

— Access all items related to a case (calendar, documents, email messages, notes, contacts, etc.) from one window?

 

Practice Management Applications and Document Generation Software

 One key to maximizing revenue is to maximize the number of billable hours, and reduce the amount of time spent on non-billable activities. Although some of your non-billable tasks may not be related to a case, such as practice management and administration, often time is spent on case-related actions for which you would not want to bill your client, such as searching for a document, email, or notes that may not be organized as well as they should be.

At a rate of $300/hour, 10 minutes spent searching for stealth information is $50 of billable time wasted. You can easily see how this wasted time, protracted out by several cases, can result in a significant decrease in productivity and, ultimately, profitability.

 The good news is that Legal Case Management and Legal Accounting software can greatly reduce your number of non-billable hours as well as maximize your production of billable time.  There are several systems available that will help you accomplish all of the goals listed above, and more.

For case management we recommend Amicus (for the smaller law firm) and Time Matters (for medium to large firms). Both programs offer comprehensive, efficient case management and legal document generation to help you work more efficiently and meet deadlines.

 

Billing and Accounting Software for Attorneys

If you’re working long hours to increase revenue and not seeing a return, it might be time to look into a legal billing application. Thankfully there are many time and billing software options for attorneys to ensure you’re capturing all of your billable time and easily generating invoices for individual cases or en masse.

For small firms, Tabs 3 and PCLaw are complete time, billing and accounting systems with functions to meet the unique needs of legal billing and accounting. PCLaw has the added (optional) benefit of a front office module which also handles case management functions. For large law firms, Juris provides the scalability, flexibility and reporting requirements unique to firms with multiple attorneys, a large support staff and complex billing requirements. These systems provide easy methods for capturing all of your billable time and easily generating invoices either on an individual basis, or en masse.

These apps will help you capture more hours, maximize revenue and control costs with fully integrated time entry, billing, payables, receivables and management reports.

 

 Leveraging the Cloud

Most legal applications require dedicated space on your server. That’s where Legal Workspace comes in. Our clients find that maintaining their own server’s security, upgrades, repairs, support maintenance and uptime is time-consuming and costly. With Legal Workspace, we manage your server and IT needs so you can spend more time practicing law and less time worrying about server and IT maintenance.

Our secure legal cloud is the perfect environment to host your virtual law firm. Work from anywhere using any device to maximize efficiency while on-the-go.

 

Legal Workspace is a complete solution created exclusively for law firms.

— Full IT management and maintenance

— Enterprise-grade security to protect against online threats

— Access Legal Workspace from anywhere using any device

— Military grade data centers located in the US

— Easy and affordable scalability as your firm grows

— Host all of your legal and business applications, no on-site servers required

 

Download this blog post here.

 

Owning Your Data in the Cloud

As many law firms are discovering, the cloud can be a wonderful business tool. With cloud services, lawyers on the go can access their data wherever they are, on their preferred devices. They aren’t tethered to the office or cumbersome physical servers.

Some sites even offer free storage, which may be conveniently tied to email or smartphones. Yet as tempting as iCloud, Google Drive, Dropbox, or other sites may be, lawyers need to do their research first before uploading their important, confidential, or privileged information to these types of free and low-cost services.

Many of these sites are geared toward consumers, not law firms. Such sites may lack key security provisions, and it may not be clear where the data resides or whether users surrender their ownership rights to information in that particular cloud.

When weighing whether to use a cloud provider for any type of information storage, lawyers have a responsibility to know where their data is, feel confident that it won’t be lost or stolen, and understand who truly owns it.

Who Owns the Data?

With free and low-cost services, lawyers might not even own their intellectual property after they upload it. Terms of ownership can vary across sites such as Google Drive, Dropbox, Apple’s iCloud, and Microsoft’s SkyDrive. Clicking “agree” to extremely long-winded service agreements and uploading data often means that users automatically abide by the provider’s terms. As Microsoft says on its Services Agreement page, “By using or accessing the Services, or by agreeing to these terms where the option is made available to you in the user interface, you agree to abide by this Agreement without modification by you. If you don’t agree, you may not use the Services.”

These “free” services may not cost money, but that doesn’t mean they are truly free. Consider that Google sells ads based on the data it collects, which means someone at the company is looking at the data.

Many of these sites also retain the right to determine whether data is offensive or violates copyright or intellectual property law. For example, Apple reserves the right to delete any information in iCloud that it finds objectionable.

According to Apple’s service terms: “However, Apple reserves the right at all times to determine whether Content is appropriate and in compliance with this Agreement, and may pre-screen, move, refuse, modify and/or remove Content at any time, without prior notice and in its sole discretion, if such Content is found to be in violation of this Agreement or is otherwise objectionable.”

How Secure is the Data?

Data breaches are becoming a distressingly common occurrence. When hackers can penetrate the online defenses of highly sophisticated companies and publicize their most sensitive business information, lawyers should rightfully worry about the security of consumer-grade storage. If users have questions about security features and approaches, it may be difficult to even find someone at the provider’s organization who can answer questions thoroughly and knowledgeably.

These types of storage approaches are often associated with emails that require few log-in steps. If a user has her Gmail account stored on her smartphone and accidently loses it, whoever finds the phone may have an easy time accessing all the files connected to the cloud through that email address.

Where is the Data?

With something called the “cloud,” users should not be surprised that data can be located anywhere. Google alone operates data centers in South Carolina, Iowa, Georgia, Oklahoma, North Carolina, Oregon, Chile, Taiwan, Singapore, Finland, Belgium, Ireland, and the Netherlands. If lawyers need to find their data quickly, it may be far more time-consuming than they initially expect. If the information resides in countries with different privacy laws than the United States, lawyers may also find themselves with cross-border jurisdictional headaches.

Finding the Right Cloud Provider

While free or cheap cloud providers may seem like a bargain in the short term, they can be very costly in the long run if data is left vulnerable or lawyers have unwittingly surrendered their ownership rights to their own information. Law firms would be better off paying a little more for legal-specific cloud providers to get the security and peace of mind they need.

When looking at different cloud providers, there are several things to consider.

Thorough Security Protocols. While free and low-cost services certainly try to keep data secure, it may be difficult for lawyers, or any user, to find out exactly what protocols, firewalls, and operating systems are in place to protect information. When weighing whether to use a cloud provider for any type of information storage, lawyers have a responsibility to know where their data is, feel confident that it won’t be lost or stolen, and understand who truly owns it.

It may also be difficult for users to find out which employees have physical and virtual access to their data and what background checks have been performed on those employees.

Legal-specific Software and Infrastructure. While many of these cloud services are easy to use, they may not integrate well with the other tools and software the firm uses. This means that data may be difficult to access and merge with the other technology.

Trained and Vetted Staff. When lawyers using free cloud storage have questions, they may not know who to contact for information. It may also be difficult to determine the level of training and expertise of those they do speak with. If a lawyer has trouble getting data in the cloud, finding someone who can help could be a serious issue. There may also be little recourse if the data cannot be recovered.

Conclusion

“Free” doesn’t always equate to inexpensive. Lawyers looking for cloud storage options should be willing to pay a little more for enterprise-grade, legal-specific data storage. Otherwise, they may find out too late that they don’t truly own their data or that someone else has taken it.

Q4 Newsletter: The Latest from Your Law Office in the Cloud

IN THIS ISSUE

Security Enhancements

 

Intrusion Detection System – A couple of months ago during our maintenance window, we implemented new redundant firewalls and an intrusion detection system. An IDS monitors the network traffic in and out of Legal Workspace for malicious activities. By identifying suspicious patterns it can prevent an attack from someone or something attempting to compromise your system.

Another optional security enhancement we now offer is two-factor authentication.  For a nominal fee per user, this service provides a second layer of security to your remote desktop login.  The way it works is that anytime you enter your password to access Legal Workspace, you will receive a pop-up message on your mobile device, you will have to hit yes to let the system know it is in fact you that entered the password. While we do have controls in place to lock an account if multiple incorrect passwords are entered, this second layer of security will protect you if someone ever gains access to you password.  Contact our team to learn more about adding two-factor authentication to your Legal Workspace plan for a low monthly cost.


Support Whenever You Need It!

 

Legal Workspace’s helpdesk is monitored by experienced engineers capable of resolving desktop and workstation problems quickly and efficiently.  Our staff will troubleshoot your problem using the latest remote support tools and escalate the call, if necessary, to a specialist to resolve critical issues.

Monday – Friday 7AM – 6PM (MST)     Call (877) 713-8302, option #2

Should you have an after-hours emergency, please call the support line and a member of our technical staff will return your call within one hour.  Please note that after-hours labor rates and minimums apply. (877) 713-8302 | helpdesk@legal-workspace.com


7 Advantages of the Cloud for a Law Firm

 

Do you know anyone that is still deciding between a cloud-based IT solution and on-site IT for their firm? There are multiple reasons why moving your law office to the cloud will make technology more accessible, security more reliable and your IT budget cost efficient. Here is a great article about some of the advantages.

Read the article >>


More Law Firms Embrace Cloud-Based IT

 

More and more law firms continue to make the switch from traditional on-site technology to a secure cloud-based approach. A cloud-based work environment provides many benefits such as enhanced security, scalability, encrypted data and operational efficiencies that are associated with the ability to work from any device or location 24/7. With law firms experiencing a surge in progression to the cloud it is only a matter of time before traditional on-premises IT is thing of the past.

Read the article >>


Have You Seen Our Video?

 

See how our cloud-based solution simplifies the business of practicing law.
Watch the video >>


Client Spotlight

 

Has Legal Workspace helped your practice? We want to hear all about it.

How has the cloud helped your practice? We’re looking for clients who can provide a short quote that shares their experience with Legal Workspace. In the end, your firm will be positioned as a thought leader by Legal Workspace with marketing activities to help increase your website performance and visibility for your law firm.

Email rblakely@legal-workspace.com to learn more and get started!

 

“I highly recommend Legal Workspace for the primary reason that it helps me sleep at night and focus on my cases. Being a small firm owner, it is easy to spend crucial time, money, and emotions on technological issues. Not us! Our technology system is organized, streamlined, accountable, and secure. We have the ability to have multiple users log into our system no matter where they are and I am never worried that I am going to lose data, calendar or contact information or files. I simply cannot imagine my practice without Legal Workspace.”

– Dustin Compton, Founder, Compton Law Firm

Make Legal Workspace Better

If you see opportunities for improvement in either the service we deliver or product enhancements we are always here to listen. Email your feedback to feedback@legal-workspace.com

Referral Special

Refer a firm or 2 or 3…Do you know a law firm that needs Legal Workspace? When you refer a friend or collage to Legal Workspace we will help them succeed and you will get a free month of service! Send your referrals via email to feedback@legal-workspace.com

Legal Workspace Ranks as Leading Solution for Practice Management in the Cloud

Legal Workspace, a leading provider of cloud-based work environments designed specifically for law firms, today announced that it has been voted as a “Best Practice Management in the Cloud” solution in the Texas Lawyer Business Department’s “Texas’ Best 2015.”

The poll, in its sixth year, calculates the votes of hundreds of lawyers as they select the best of legal service and technology providers.

“It is truly an honor to be recognized as a preferred cloud-based legal technology solution,” said Joe Kelly, founder and CEO of Legal Workspace. “Law firms interested in adding efficiency and stronger security are increasingly moving to the cloud. Our experience with office and legal-specific software enables lawyers to easily log in to their cloud-based desktop and have every solution they need to operate efficiently and productively.”

“Legal Workspace was exactly what we were looking for,” said Randall Doctor, founder of the Doctor Law Group. “All we had to do was select the software we wanted and Legal Workspace handled everything from there.”

In addition to partnering with leading legal software providers, Legal Workspace also recently announced the launch of the Legal Workspace HIPAA Compliant Edition. The solution enables law firms considered business associates by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) Omnibus Final Rule to meet the necessary security regulations by offering an HIPAA Business Associate Agreement.

Visit the Texas’ Best 2015 report to view the complete results.

7 Advantages of the Cloud for a Law Firm

Law firms make one important choice that affects numerous other aspects of their business: whether

  1. to set up their own IT infrastructure and house data onsite or
  2. use a cloud-based solution to host all of their applications and data.

Here are the seven ways in which a law firm will benefit from the cloud:

  1. Maximize Internet Security

The Legal Workspace (LWS) solution has four internet providers protected by redundant enterprise-grade firewalls and an intrusion detection/prevention system that has the ability to do dual-factor authentication.

7 Advantages

This level of security is difficult—if not impossible—to replicate in an onsite IT environment. Certainly it’s out of reach for small firms with limited budgets. As a result, many small firms end up with imperfect solutions, such as a consumer-grade firewall protecting their onsite server.

Joe Kelly, Founder and CEO of Legal Workspace, says, “We’re able to offer small law firms better internet security than most Am Law 100 firms have in place.”

  1. Reliable Physical Security

Some people question the importance of physical data security. After all, if someone were to penetrate a firm’s physical defenses, they’d still need to log in to the server. But, physical security is very important: Backup media could be stolen; it’s even possible that someone could take the whole server.

LWS’s servers are located in secure data centers. To gain entry, authorized LWS employees must provide biometric identification as well as an ID card. “Only our people have the code to physically access our servers,” Kelly says.

  1. Immediate Disaster Recovery

Our enterprise-grade equipment is housed in two data centers in different states. “Only our full-time employees have physical or electronic access to these redundant systems,” Kelly says. That means that if something were to happen at the data center in Colorado, our cloud services could still operate because of its intact center in Texas.

That’s one of the disadvantages of storing data in onsite servers: Should something like a fire happen onsite, a law firm would be able to eventually access its latest backup in the cloud. But, restoration could take a few weeks—which could be devastating to business.

That problem doesn’t exist if a law firm uses Legal Workspace’s cloud services. In the same situation, “They could go to any electronics store, get new laptops, log into their secure cloud environment, and they’ll be right back where they were. Even their Windows desktop is sitting in the cloud,” Kelly says. Nothing lost, no delays.

  1. Predictable IT Budgeting

Technology equipment has to be depreciated over five years, but firms often have to buy the latest version of document management software or a new server every two or three years. It’s hard to anticipate what will be needed when.

LWS’s regular monthly fee means IT spend will be a known quantity with 100% predictability. And, with that monthly fee, customers automatically are upgraded to the latest versions of legal software included in the package they select.

  1. Eliminate IT Distraction and Hassle

“Every law firm has to run a little IT department,” Kelly says. Even if a firm only consists of three people, the managing partner still has to spend time and energy configuring technological needs and managing vendors. A larger firm might have a full-time IT person on staff.

None of that is necessary if a firm uses our all-in-one cloud solution. For a monthly fee, all IT worries evaporate, and lawyers can get back to doing what they excel at doing: practicing law.

  1. Inherent Remote Access

Typically, configuring remote access for firm lawyers and staff can be a painful experience with a lot of extra work and expense. Larger firms might need to set up a terminal server or a Citrix server cluster. Small firms might utilize a service such as GoToMyPC, which allows subscribers to access their desktop remotely for a fee.

Those options can work, but they don’t have all of the advantages of a solution like LWS. Our whole cloud system is remote: Even when lawyers are sitting in their office at a desktop, they’re accessing the files remotely when they’re logged into LWS. In other words, setting up remote access is just part of the process of working with LWS and not an extra step.

  1. Experienced Law Firm Cloud Services

Hundreds of law firms that want the advantages of a cloud-based solution have been using LWS’s services for years. As a result, LWS has seen what methods and strategies work well, which means they get it done right the first time.

Kelly says, “There’s no guess work for us. We do this work over and over, and it’s all we do. We pass along the benefit of our experience to our customers.”

A cloud environment makes technology more accessible to every member of a law firm, regardless of size. But, a cloud environment like LWS does much more than that. From security to ease of use to predictability to flexibility, LWS removes the obstacles of working with technology. It renders technological issues invisible, which allows its users only to see—and benefit from—its advantages.

7 Advantages of the Cloud for a Law Firm