Julie Bays (@juliebays) is a Practice Management Consultant for the Oklahoma Bar Association. She works with the OBA`s Management Assistance Program to help lawyers use technology and other tools to effectively manage their offices, and teaches a variety of continuing legal education courses. Bays is also involved in OBA`s access to justice initiatives such as Oklahoma Free Legal Answers. The popular annual guide to legal technology is back with its 2020 edition. The Guide to Legal Technology for Solo and Small Firms is the only book of its kind that helps lawyers in solo and small law firms find the best value for their legal technology dollars. In clear and understandable language, there is a vendor-independent overview and recommendations for computers, servers, network devices, legal software, printers, security products, smartphones, tablets, and more. Whether you choose to do it yourself or work with an IT consultant, this book contains the information you need to narrow down the selection to a manageable set of proven options. What will you focus your technology spending on law firms in the coming months? Our experts are at your side to advise you. Cybersecurity should be a top priority for all lawyers, regardless of the size of their law firm. Ransomware attacks have increased at an alarming rate, especially since the beginning of the pandemic, when lawyers were working on their unsecured home networks.
Some reports put ransomware growth at 150% or more. I understand that, and I am very much in favour of full transparency here. I developed the first turnkey cybersecurity solution for individuals and small businesses. It incorporates these layers of security and is specifically designed to be affordable and accessible to solo lawyers and small law firms. Traditional antivirus software is no longer enough to protect your computer systems from attacks. Yes, you should always keep your investment in your antivirus/malicious apps, but there is another security protection that you need to implement. Small businesses should invest in some form of terminal detection and response (EDR). The truth is that sole proprietorships and small businesses need to do more when it comes to proactively addressing the threat of security breaches, but the solutions most often touted in legal publications are designed for medium-sized to large law firms, leaving solo firms and small firms completely alone. The premise of this book is simple: to help lawyers in solo law firms and small law firms find the “sweet spot” of legal technology – the best value for money. This guide can help the lawyer sort through a wide range of tools that are not covered in most core law school programs. The authors` expertise, drawing on their years of experience in creating previous editions of this book, makes this publication an exceptional value for the solo lawyer or small law firm. In 2020 and 2021, your business may have had to make changes quickly to meet the new standard remotely.
For 2022, it`s time to review: what works and what doesn`t? The good news is that a great resource for lawyers in small law firms looking to invest in new technologies has just been published by ABA Publishing: The 2020 Solo and Small Firm Legal Technology Guide, written by Sharon D. Nelson, John W. Simek and Michael C. Maschke. Focus first on people, then on processes, then on technology. Don`t let technology (and technology spend) lead you to expensive products that might not meet your needs. Start with your customers and employees to identify current pain points and imagine what you want to see for a seamless workflow. Work with your team (or if you`re a true solo, talk to your colleagues) to identify the essentials to run your practice from your laptop, with documents at your fingertips. Catherine Sanders Reach (@catherinereach) is director of the North Carolina Bar Association`s Center for Practice Management, providing practice technology and management support. She was co-chair of the ABA TECHSHOW 2020 Planning Board. Previously, she was director of the American Bar Association`s Legal Technology Resource Center for more than 10 years and was among the first Fastcase 50s.
Join your fellow executive partners, practice group leaders, and other law firm leaders to have brain-like discussions about some of the most pressing issues facing law firms today. Microsoft Licensing Tip: Small businesses shouldn`t spend technology dollars on perpetual Microsoft Office licenses. Buying a Microsoft 365 subscription is a much better alternative. When you purchase a perpetual license, you only get the features available at the time of sale, and support is limited to just a few years. The subscription model provides you with constant updates (security and bug fixes) and all new features. There`s no doubt that the subscription model is the best – and safest – way. Over the past two years, the pace of technology adoption has accelerated as companies automate their practices for remote work and virtual practice. We wondered what tools or initiatives small businesses could open for the coming year. Brett Burney (@BBurney) is a director of Burney Consultants LLC, an independent legal technology consulting firm. He is also a sought-after trainer and facilitator for lawyers looking to integrate Macs and iPads into their practice.