What US law firms can learn from the COVID-19 pandemic

What US law firms can learn from the COVID-19 pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted everyday life in an unprecedented way. With several places across the United States bearing lockdowns and/or shifting policies as new developments arise, most (if not all) industries were forced to change the way they operate. For the legal sector, law firms like yours had to adopt remote work arrangements to keep their cases moving forward.

To better adapt to the continuously changing circumstances, you must seriously consider the lessons the COVID-19 crisis is teaching law firms:

1. Invest in your office’s digital transformation

The legal industry has been and continues to be notorious for being a technology laggard for the following reasons:

  • Lack of digital awareness
  • Focus on the immediate demands of the job, not the “big picture”
  • Resistance to change

But with the COVID-19 response requiring social distancing, lawyers suddenly had to leverage technology to be able to work from their homes. Some US state and federal courts were even able to successfully hold proceedings and hearings using video conferencing tools. From this experience, it’s evident that the entire industry must move forward with digital transformation to improve its resilience.

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More than providing the basic tools for remote work, you must also work on securing your staff’s mobile work setups to safeguard against data breaches, which may threaten client confidentiality.

Further reading: 4 Ways law firms can adapt to the new challenges brought by the COVID-19 crisis

2. Take care of your employees

Keep in mind that the people in your company are your greatest assets. They are the ones who help the firm make it through this global health crisis. As such, before you even consider laying people off, you should consider alternative strategies. After all, it will take significant time and effort to recruit, hire, and train new employees to fill in those empty positions again once budget allows.

To illustrate, you can resort to personnel changes, reduced shifts, or pay cuts to stay afloat. Just be careful not to overburden your employees. Doing so will only lead to poor employee morale, exhaustion, and burnout, which may negatively impact your client relations. On the other hand, if you grant your staff flexible hours and check up on how they're doing outside of work during these trying times, they will work hard and stick with you for the long haul.

3. Prioritize your clients

It’s during crises like these that clients rely on you the most because their legal priorities and financial capacities may have dramatically changed. Make sure your law firm and firm’s partners proactively get in touch with clients and find ways to extend help, such as presenting flexible payment terms, alternative fee arrangements, or one-time discounts. Offering compassion and understanding will go a long way to solidifying lawyer-client relationships and propelling you to success as the economy recovers.

4. Take advantage of outsourcing

With all the travel restrictions and safety measures in place, some of your regular tasks — especially those that require a lot of legwork — are a lot harder to accomplish. A good example of this is the time-consuming task of obtaining paperwork.

Further reading: Tasks US law firms should consider outsourcing

By outsourcing your law firm’s record retrieval needs, you’ll be able to acquire paperwork more easily, accurately, and speedily. Not only that, but you’ll also free up your staff for higher-value work (that can be done from the safety of their homes) and ultimately save money in the process.

Position your law firm for success during and after any crisis by partnering with Record Retrieval Solutions. We can help you do more while helping you reduce your overhead expenses. Learn more about our services today!

Obtain your paperwork fast and hassle-free when you partner with Record Retrieval Solutions.

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