Lawyers are some of the busiest and most overworked professional people on the planet. It’s not uncommon for attorneys to work 60, 70 or even 80 hour weeks, especially when mired in the details of a current or complicated case. While all business owners are on the lookout for ways to save time and improve efficiency in their businesses, lawyers are among those that stand to benefit the most from such advances. One new way businesses are making these improvements is through cloud computing solutions and services.
It seems that these days everyone is talking about the cloud. This phrase has emerged from obscurity to become one of the most-used technological buzzwords of current times. As a lawyer looking to make your firm the very best it can be, you might be wondering: What is the cloud? How can it help me in my practice?
The New Way to Store Data
The cloud refers to the storage of files, data and information on remote servers provided by a cloud hosting company. This storage solution eliminates the need for a company or law firm to have their own in-house servers and other equipment, as well as paid IT staff or dedicated IT work hours to maintain the servers.
Files and data stored within the cloud are then accessible to any authorized user anytime, anywhere, as long as there is an available Internet connection and a computer. For a monthly fee, a business can outsource its storage needs in this convenient manner either in part or entirely. The cloud also offers document syncing services, enabling multiple users to have access to the most current version of a file as it is changed and developed over time.
How Cloud Solutions Can Help
The cloud is a revolutionary concept for law firms. Never before has it been possible to stay this connected and on the same page with fellow attorneys and support staff in such a comprehensive way. This is possible even if staff members are working remotely in different cities across different time zones.
Cloud computing can be particularly helpful during the building and unfolding of class action suits. Some of these cases require access to the information of thousands of clients. Larger and longer cases often require the contributions and services of multiple lawyers and staff members as the case evolves. Cloud computing featuring document syncing services can really help under these conditions and serve to expedite the workflow, making sure all staff members involved are on the same page.
With cloud computing, productivity and efficiency can improve exponentially. File sharing services allow all users to email files securely and contribute at any hour of the day, and the most current version of a document is always available. Also, if needed, there’s a revision history feature that allows users to look back and see each version of a document as it evolved. Users are able to tell who made specific changes and they can revert back to an earlier version of a document if conditions warrant.
For busy law firms, cloud computing just makes sense, as long as you use it sensibly. It cuts down on the need for physical documents to be transported among lawyers both in house and in different geographical locations. Best of all, it speeds up the completion of all facets of the workload while keeping everyone on the same page. This means less stress, more productivity and ultimately more cases handled effectively.