In order to increase income, long time ago, lawyers started billing their clients based on the number of worked hours. In order to keep track of those hours, they used the most basic work time trackers - timesheets.
After some time, technology developed and a new industry emerged, the time tracking industry, and lawyers aren’t the only ones who can benefit from this product.
Timesheets Need to be Replaced
Once upon a time, timesheets were the only way to track time. Lawyers would sit down at the end of the week, month or even quarter to write down their billable hours for each client. They would do this from memory, based on their calendars, maybe even call logs. Then, these sheets would reach the Administrative department, who would then manually enter all billable hours into the billing system.
This system is flawed in several ways. Attorneys can easily forget that they’ve done something and forgot to bill it, meaning that they would charge less to the client, but also be paid less. On the other hand, your law firm could end up overcharging the clients because someone cheated on their sheet. Either way - your company suffers.
It doesn’t matter if the lawyers are using a pen and paper to enter their hours, or Excel sheets - it’s an unreliable system, and it’s really surprising that some companies still resort to this instead of using a law office time tracking software.
What Should You Track?
If you’re finally on board with switching from outdated timesheets to a legal time tracking software you’re probably thinking what should you track? Well… pretty much everything. Even the non-billable hours!
When tracking billable hours exclusively you’ll get accurate payments from the clients, and that’s excellent. But what happens if you’re spending too much time on administrative tasks that don’t fall under billable hours?
The idea is that you track all hours to see where your time goes. If you’re spending more time on non-billable activities you’re costing your company more than you’re earning. Once you’re aware of how you spend your time, you’ll be able to optimize your workload and minimize non-billable hours.
How Legal Billing and Time Tracking Software Work Together?
We already mentioned that time tracking in the legal industry is important for client and employee billings. But besides giving your clients the exact number of hours you spent working for them, you can also give them proof of work.
Law firm time tracking software usually has time tracking with screen capture option, and you can provide clients with the screenshots so they have no doubts about how much time you spent on their case. Furthermore, a handy dashboard with project and task tracking will also allow them to see what you’ve done for them.
Some time tracking software options, like Insightful, also have a feature called “Client login.” Thanks to this option, clients can safely login to the program and see all time tracking data related to their cases, without having access to anything else.
If you have managerial or admin access to the best time tracking app of your choice, you’ll be able to set the hourly payment amount for each of your lawyers, and their payroll will be automatically calculated. This feature will save hours to your accounting team, and all your employees will be happy because every minute of their work (including overtime) was paid fairly.
Who wouldn’t want to be able to get accurate payments from the clients and pay their employees fairly, while keeping the profit at the same time? Simple time tracking software options can be free, and if they’re paid - they are budget friendly, so you can’t say you won’t have a good return on investment from that.
You’re still here? Go on and find the best online time clock software for your law firm.