Best Productivity Tools Every Lawyer Needs to Boost Efficiency

Studies show lawyers spend 48% of their non-billable hours on administrative tasks, while another 33% is dedicated to business development. Leveraging specific productivity tools for lawyers, like outsourcing legal transcription projects, can provide lawyers with a much-needed reprieve from paperwork. 

Professionally, lawyers have duties to carry out, such as arranging appointments, organizing documents, negotiating agreements, presenting themselves in the best possible light to attract new clients, etc., and managing all these responsibilities simultaneously can be exhausting. 

However, wanting to succeed is not enough; lawyers must also be equipped with the right tools to optimize their productivity. With that in mind, we’ve covered productivity tools to help lawyers make tasks more manageable.

In this article, you’ll learn how:

  • Productivity tools can help lawyers manage cases, automate documents, and collaborate.
  • Common productivity challenges for lawyers include completing administrative tasks, interruptions, tight deadlines, inadequate technology, and poor communication.
  • The right legal transcription provider is important for accuracy, security, and flexibility.

Importance of Productivity Tools for Lawyers

Productivity tools can be used for case management, document automation, and other ways for attorneys to stay organized. Therefore, lawyers can dedicate more time to important activities like legal analysis or strategic planning.

Putting that benefit aside, productivity tools can promote teamwork among legal professionals. These tools allow them to exchange information, assign tasks, and collaborate on complicated cases—factors that can improve the overall service provided to clients.

Factors That Hinder Lawyers’ Productivity

Maximizing productivity is crucial for lawyers and law firms. Now, let’s examine the common struggles that keep them from being efficient.

Administrative TasksNon-billable activities like document management, billing, and scheduling consume time, reducing focus on core legal work.
Constant InterruptionsEmails, phone calls, and disruptions hinder concentration and efficiency in completing complex legal tasks.
Tight Deadlines & MultitaskingPressure to meet deadlines and handle multiple cases simultaneously leads to stress and burnout, impacting productivity.
Inadequate TechnologyOutdated systems and tools slow down workflows and hamper collaboration among legal teams.
Lack of Clear CommunicationPoor coordination within legal departments results in duplication of efforts and wasted time.

Best Tools For Lawyers To Boost Their Productivity

We’ve listed the tools and legal technology – though not limited to – that could help lawyers improve productivity. 

1. Google Workspace

Although not entirely for lawyers, Google Workspace can improve a lawyer’s productivity.

For starters, Google Workspace offers cloud-based tools, like Gmail for secure email communication, Google Drive for sharable file storage, Google Docs for documents, Google Sheets for data analysis or tracking, and Google Calendar for scheduling management.

In addition, Google Meet lets lawyers conduct virtual meetings with clients or colleagues. At the same time, Google Chat can be useful for instant messaging across the team—an easy-to-use, all-in-one solution.

2. Case Management Software: PracticePanther, Clio, MyCase, etc.

Case management tools provide a centralized platform for lawyers to securely store case files, automate document creation, and track deadlines. Secure client portals within these platforms enable client communication and provide streamlined access to case updates.

In a recent survey of firms with 50 to 99 lawyers, 78% reported having case management software. Many case management solutions also offer mobile apps, which means they can still access case information or perform tasks whether you’re working remotely or at home. 

3. Document Automation: HotDocs, TheFormTool, Smokeball

Automating the repetitive process of creating documents is a surefire way to save a lawyer’s time.

With the help of document automation, lawyers can create customizable templates for frequently used legal documents like contracts and agreements. Users can input specific information into the templates, and the software populates the data throughout the document, though manual checking is necessary to avoid errors.

According to a past study, lawyers spend nearly 18% of their time on legal research. Platforms like LexisNexis, Westlaw, and Fastcase can improve a law firm’s productivity by providing access to legal information databases. Each has search tools that let lawyers quickly find relevant legal authorities—more time saved than traditional search methods.

Many of these platforms also provide citator tools, such as Shepard’s or KeyCite, which help lawyers determine the validity of a particular case by analyzing its subsequent treatment by courts. The platforms often include features like case summaries, headnotes, and legal analytics to smoothen the research process.

5. Time Tracking and Billing Software: TimeSolv, Timecamp, Toggl

Simplifying the recording of billable hours and generating invoices can also boost lawyers’ productivity. Luckily, solutions like TimeSolv, Timecamp, and Toggl let lawyers easily track time spent on various projects. The technology automatically assigns tie entries to the appropriate matters, though you must check the time indicated to ensure accuracy.

Many of these solutions also have customizable invoice templates to make creating professional, detailed invoices that include expense receipts, time descriptions, and payment terms easier.

6. Project Management Tools: Trello, Asana, Monday

Project management tools—Trello, Asana, and Monday—can also help lawyers improve their productivity by providing a centralized platform. Lawyers can create visual boards representing different cases, allowing them to break down projects into manageable tasks.

Anyone in the law firm or the team can be assigned specific tasks with due dates, attachments, and comments, promoting clear communication. Many platforms also offer features—calendar views or Gantt charts—that help lawyers visualize project timelines.

7. Note-Taking and Organization Apps: Evernote, OneNote, Notion

However simple, note-taking apps like Evernote, OneNote, and Notion can help improve lawyers’ productivity as they can serve as a workspace for accessing important information

These tools help lawyers create notes, documents, and multimedia content in various formats. Then, users can organize their notes into notebooks, folders, or tags to make it easier to find information when needed.

8. Secure Client Communication Platforms: MyCase, Clio Connect, Liscio

Secure client communication platforms offer encrypted messaging, document sharing, and file storage to protect sensitive client information from unauthorized access. Now, clients can easily access these platforms through a portal to view case updates, send messages, and upload or download documents.

Some of these communication platforms can also integrate with other legal software, such as case management systems or billing tools, resulting in a smoother overall workflow.

9. E-Signature Solutions: DocuSign, Adobe Sign, HelloSign

E-signature solutions like DocuSign, Adobe Sign, HelloSign, etc., can enhance lawyers’ productivity by speeding up the process of obtaining signatures on legal documents. 

Lawyers can send documents electronically to anyone involved, so there’s no need to print or fax physical copies. Recipients can easily review the documents from any device with an internet connection and sign them using legally binding electronic signatures.

Transcribing legal documents is undoubtedly tedious, which can greatly contribute to inefficiencies. Lawyers often handle many recordings, like client interviews, depositions, court proceedings, etc. 

Luckily, outsourced legal transcription services can help solve this problem. 

Transcription professionals use a combination of human expertise and productivity tools specifically for transcribing legal documents to accurately produce a written version of a recording, removing the daunting task from lawyers’ shoulders. 

However, choosing the right transcription services is critical for anyone involved in legal matters because even the smallest mistakes in transcription can have major consequences. 

The right legal transcription company will help you, as an attorney, be more organized and save valuable time. However, the benefits don’t end there.

Here are other perks that will move the needle for legal professionals:

The Correct Document Format

You’ll receive the correct document format for your needs. The finished transcript can include timestamps, line numbers, and page numbers, and the speakers can be identified by name. 

This information allows attorneys to track the event’s timeline and flow of information, which is crucial for finding inconsistencies in a witness’s testimony and formulating your case.

Easier to Note Critical Points

Typed transcripts make it simpler to highlight the document’s critical parts. Likewise, note-taking is faster with a transcribed document right before you. 

Uploading and accessing a written document is painless, and digital formats allow quick searching through a document to find keywords and phrases. 

Helps Support Evidence

Legal transcripts will also help you support the audio or video recordings presented as evidence. 

Transcriptions are useful for jurors and others involved in the hearing or trial. With a transcript, everyone receives the same information from the submitted evidence, which reduces the risk of misinterpretation.

Gives You A Wider Understanding

If you’re handling a complicated case with conflicting reports from the people involved and several witnesses, a legal transcript of the corresponding audio or video evidence can help you grasp the evidence and information. 

A more comprehensive view may produce a positive result for your client’s case.

Helps Stay Organized

Having digitally stored legal transcripts makes it simpler to organize, locate, and search for information when you need it. It’s also handy to share information with others working on your cases with you, inside and outside your firm.

Transcriptions Are Flexible

Legal transcripts can be translated into many different languages, allowing anyone to follow along regardless of whether or not they can understand English. 

Transcripts also benefit people who are not physically present during the hearing or for those with hearing disabilities, as they allow them to follow the trial proceedings without missing a thing.

In North Carolina and some other jurisdictions in the US, the appellant is responsible for providing the complete record of the previous trial. You need to have it ready when your client wants to file their appeal. Having all of your transcripts in one place, all in the same format, helps you prepare new strategies with ease.

Outsourcing legal transcription to a competent transcription provider benefits you by saving you money, time, and energy. Your legal transcription provider understands your requirements in the legal industry and helps you perform at your best.

Choosing the wrong legal transcription provider can make you jump through hoops to get a transcript you can present in court. Worst of all, an error in a transcript can lead to an innocent person being falsely accused and receiving an unfair sentence.

Moreover, choosing to save money and forgoing human transcription services for automated solutions can lead to messy transcripts, incomprehensible formats, and guaranteed errors on every document. 

The best transcription services have human transcribers with a proven record of operating in the legal field. That way, the transcriptionists know the ins and outs of every recording and document, making the transition from audio to usable text as smooth as possible. 

Service Features

It’s a good thing that Ditto checks all the boxes and more. 

Let’s discuss how we measure up against (and exceed) the competition: 

  • Stringent Security Measures: Our CJIS compliance and robust encryption protocols will protect your confidential information optimally. We’ll answer any questions you have about our security and will be more than happy to provide proof of certification. We also have existing clients, like Patrick W, who have experienced the full scale of our security measures, including non-disclosure agreements. 
  • High Accuracy: One of Patrick W’s paralegals characterized error-checking transcripts as “stressful and exhausting.” All that stress disappeared when they chose to work with us. Our professional human transcription service provides the highest possible levels of accuracy—more than 99%, as close to perfection as they come. 
  • Flexible Turnaround Times: Depending on the project, we can provide rush transcripts within one or two days for those who need things done quickly. One of Patrick W’s 
  • Proven Track Record: We’ve provided high-quality transcription services to the legal industry since 2010. So, rather than relying on untested providers or fancy AI tools, put your trust in our long, proven history.
  • Flexibility: Need timestamps or verbatim transcripts? Say the word, and we’ll get it done.
  • No Long-term Contracts: Pay for what you need, when you need it, without worrying about getting tied up with long-term service commitments (though I guarantee your firm will be back for more.)

Let’s Talk Business, Shall We?

Ditto Transcripts has extensive knowledge of legal processes and terminology, can work within any timeline, and provides the highest levels of quality. 

Our transcription process ensures 99% accuracy every time. We don’t use automated transcription, and everyone on our staff—transcribers, transcription editors, and customer service managers—is an expert in the field. 

Ditto Transcripts is a CJIS-compliant, Denver, Colorado-based transcription company that provides fast, accurate, and reliable legal transcription services for individuals and companies of all sizes. Call (720) 287-3710 today for a free quote, and ask about our free five-day trial.

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