Legal work is a little bit like waiting for a bus – nothing for ages and then lots arrives at once. If you’re a sole practitioner or a small firm you oscillate between (a) twiddling your thumbs waiting for work, and (b) being so busy that your private life suffers as you struggle to keep up. This is just one of the reasons why you should use a virtual assistant.
Another aspect of legal work – particularly for sole practitioners – is the administrative side of your practice. Somebody has to keep track of fees and expenses, open the post, manage your diary, answer the phone, and do all of the things that go with running a legal practice. As a sole practitioner that person (at least until you’re earning a good and steady income) is usually yourself.
When it’s a choice between doing it yourself and hiring a salaried employee (and providing the workspace and work equipment for that extra employee), the DIY option usually wins. Who would take the risk of taking on an employee without a guaranteed future income to cover that cost? Who would want to pay a salaried employee when the fallow periods arrive and there’s nothing for the employee to work on?
I think you see where I’m going here – another reason why you should use a virtual assistant is…
Outsourcing has been around for a long time. The idea is that you remove specific tasks from your to-do list and hand them over to somebody else to complete for you, paying that person on an hourly, weekly, or monthly basis (some people have taken outsourcing to extremes – like this software developer who outsourced his entire job for 20% of his salary).
If you have a paper based practice then there are limited outsourcing options available to you. Sure, you can outsource your dictation typing – but you still have to print out the resulting document, attach it to the physical file in your office (and do whatever packing and posting is necessary). I won’t go through all the limitations but believe me – there are many (I’ve been that soldier).
On the other hand, with a paperless practice, your outsourcing options are virtually unlimited. A virtual assistant can be given remote access to your whole office setup – your files, your e-mail, your calendar, your expense records, your billing system, your research tools, even your case and client notebooks. Any task that doesn’t require your legal expertise can simply be passed to the VA.
Virtual assistants come in all shapes and sizes, and can be experts in office administration, web design, social media marketing, content management – anything you can think of really.
Getting a smartlegal virtual assistant means getting a VA who is:
- familiar with (and probably has prior experience of) legal practices;
- trained in paperless methodologies and software;
- capable of fast turnaround of work when required;
- conversant with data protection principles;
- committed to complete confidentiality.
Worried about your data security? If you hire a virtual assistant through smartlegal you will be provided with a Data Processing Agreement and a Service Agreement and your data will be treated carefully and in accordance with law at all times.
Get in touch with us today and we’ll set you up with a VA. You’ve nothing to lose – if you don’t like it, don’t use it!