Law firms send hundreds, or even thousands of emails a day. How can Thread Legal help firms with email management, firm management and more?
When you enter your law firm offices and sit down at your desk, the first thing you probably do is check your emails. Or you might even have checked your emails before this – whilst in your house, or on your commute. Why do we check our email inboxes so many times a day?
Information flows in and out of law firms continuously and email is one of the primary channels through which it flows. If you are behind with your emails, you are working in the past. New information, currently marked as ‘unread’ could be urgent new instructions from a client, a missing piece of information in your case or a critical issue that needs resolved immediately. This is why, despite the unnecessary group emails and spam that wastes time, lawyers and their inboxes are rarely parted.
The Advantages of Managing Emails Within Your Case Management System
When we were designing Thread Legal, we knew that email management within Thread would be a critical piece of the puzzle.
Emails are a critical channel for information, but their nature means they can also act as a barrier to this information flow. Information that the wider company needs can often get ‘trapped’ or lost within an individual’s inbox.
For example, imagine that a critical piece of information gets sent to a fee earner, but that fee earner is unable to access their inbox. Maybe they are in court, or meeting with a client, or travelling. Junior members of the team are available and able to act on that information, but it does not reach them.
Now imagine that one of your team has suddenly resigned and another employee has now, in addition to their own work, taken on the ex-employee’s cases. They have a case management system filled with documents, but no understanding of where the case is currently at, the communication history or the relationship with the client. They have to manually search through the ex-employees inbox, where emails were only sporadically filed and often have unclear subject lines. This takes the new case owner several hours.
One of the key advantages of using a software with email management functionality is that it frees up internal bottlenecks. Emails are available instantly on the file, meaning that the team can action them, even if the internal recipient is unavailable. This makes firms more efficient and responsive to clients.
Another advantage is that it provides firms with full case visibility. If files need to be transferred to someone new for any reason, it takes the new owner minutes rather than hours to get up to speed. This provides a better customer service and again takes time. It also helps de-risk your business. Individual contributors, however important, will not leave chaos in their wake if they leave suddenly due to illness or new employment.
A further advantage is that if queries ever arise over your handling of a case, the evidence is immediately and easily available. There are no questions of whether that email was sent to Fred or Sue, or who responded to the client. All the relevant information is in one place and can be quickly reviewed.
This is also very useful for internal reviews of a case and for more efficient management. Managers do not need to ask the case owners what is happening as all case information is easily accessible in one place.
How Thread Legal Manages Your Emails
Thread Legal is built with Microsoft 365, so managing emails within our platform is simple. We’ve provided options that suit all members of the firm!
You can send emails directly from your file, within the Thread Legal platform. All replies to your email will be automatically attached to your case file and you will receive notifications within Thread when one of your cases receives an email response. This helps you to cut out time spent reading spam and other irrelevant emails – as Thread only notifies you of those directly related to your cases.
When you receive an email within Thread Legal, it is just a couple of clicks to respond, save any attachments into the ‘Documents’ section of your file or set up tasks following on from the email.
You can also set up email templates within Thread, to save you time on regularly sent emails.
For those lawyers who love to stay in Outlook, we have created a desktop add-in. From the Add-In you can choose which file you want to add an email to and save attachments. It just takes a few simple clicks to transfer emails from your Outlook into Thread. Inbox organisation has never been easier!
Email Management is About More Than Just Emails
Emails are more than just electronic letters – these days they are a critical point of entry and exit for information and one that as a firm, you need to take ownership of. Using Thread Legal to manage emails takes the flow of information into individuals in the firm and spreads this information firm-wide.
This creates efficiencies, as all firm members can act immediately on information, not just the email recipient. It also reduces the level of risk within your business, as if an individual firm member becomes unavailable either temporarily or permanently, the information that firm member holds is not trapped within their individual accounts. It is also available to the whole firm, within a case-specific format.
Whatever area of law you are in, whatever the size of your firm, you can take control of your emails today with Thread Legal!
Are you a client? Email [email protected] for advice on setting up your email system within Thread Legal.
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