7 Surprising Benefits of Using HotDocs Document Automation Software
The legal industry is changing rapidly.
Among the challenges, there’s pressure to cut costs coming from your clients, as well as a move to charge fixed fees. In addition to this, you’re being pushed to be more productive, in the same amount of time you’ve always had.
As attorneys move to new firms they often take the knowledge they’ve gained with them.
There is a solution, however. Using automated document creation can help with all of these issues. It can also help increase firms’ profit margins.
Understanding this new technology is vital. Any firms that don’t keep up with the times will be left behind in this competitive market.
If you’re curious as to how it all works, keep reading. This article will explain just how document automation software can transform your law firm for the better.
What Is Document Automation?
You may already be familiar with some form of document automation. Microsoft’s mail merge program is an example of automating Word document creation. This software feature adds address data into a document.
At its core, document automation software is using a computer system to create instead of a human.
For the most part, simple routine tasks are done by word processing programs. Software that is specifically tailored for legal agreements and forms are more complex. They work in a sophisticated and intelligent way that suits legal documents better.
1. Filling the Technology Gap
Compared to other industries, the world of law is lagging behind. At many firms, there is a gap in technology innovation. The support teams that attorneys work with are therefore not learning skills to be competitive.
By using document creation tools, you ensure that your firm is utilizing modern technology. You can schedule a training session to help staff understand the basics of the document automation. Once they are comfortable with the basics, they can grow and develop their competencies.
2. It’s Good for a Firm’s Bottom Line
Law firms are suffering the same fate as every other industry. There’s pressure to both cut fees and maintain profits at the same time. Part of a solution to this could be reduced unrecoverable hours.
Before contract automation, for example, an attorney may recover five hours. However, the time actually taken to draft that document is closer to ten hours.
With automated software, you can bill those same five hours. Now though, it takes only a part of that time to create the same document.
You get increased efficiency, a higher recovery rate, and possibly decreased overheads.
3. Increased Productivity
Once an employee knows how the system works, they are comfortable enough to work both quickly and accurately. No more time wasted on entering the same information over and over again.
For fee-earning associates and support staff alike, this adds up to the same work done in less time. We have found that the firms where we have implemented HotDocs, we have been able to see a 70% reduction in the time it takes to create documents.
4. Better Trained Junior Associates
The best way to automate is by getting attorneys themselves to create the documents. Associates who are more junior learn from dealing with automated documents on the job. There are a number of benefits to this.
One, there’s no risk of giving the work to those who aren’t experts in the subject matter.
Two, it’s easier for the template to be maintained.
Three, by customizing the templates, you create a sophisticated automation system. This is a sustainable solution that will work much better than a the standard copy and replace method that many law firms use.
5. Better Brand Management
Did you know that 270 billion emails are sent each day? Add to that about twice as many documents being created in word processing programs every year.
Each of these documents is part of your firm’s brand strategy. Every single one needs to be on-brand and legally accurate.
The American Bar Association highlights that brand strategy is part of an overall marketing message all firms should practice.
When you’re building a brand, every action and document you create reflects it. The image of the brand should always be cohesive and accurate, and document creation tools can help with that.
6. A Happier Workforce
Studies show that happy workers increase productivity by about 12%.
The effects are visible with the firms we work with and those who have automated their documents with us. Nothing is worse than doing remedial work that someone who makes far less should be doing. With document automation, you are able to focus on ensuring that the clients problems are being solved, and will be left with a happier workforce.
The main selling point of document automation is the idea of the “dynamic template”. HotDocs software turns documents into superior templates. They have the most recent language and have the ability to handle complex circumstances, without much effort.
In contrast, dynamic templates can be changed as needed. Individuals can control updates and when changes are needed, they can be rolled out throughout the whole organization.
The result of this is that documents stay flexible. As your firm’s needs change, so can the documents. This applies to changes to law, an address adjustment, changing a job title, email signature, or updating legal language.
Document Automation Software for Your Firm
We know that for many firms this is uncharted territory. However, those who embrace new technologies and systems will reap the benefits over those who don’t evolve.
Before you start a document automation initiative, you’ll need to find the right technology partner. Read more about us and then get in touch to see what we can do for you.