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Realize your limits… Now is the time for an annual resource assessment

End of year is the best time to plan and organize your business goals for the next year, one aspect of which is to review the performance of available resources. Proper allocation of such resources is a crucial element to your success, and one that needs to be assessed regularly.

When analyzing resource management, there are several questions to consider:

  • Did you achieve your business development goals?
  • Did your practice manage all projects ably and efficiently?
  • Are your in-house procedures flexible enough to handle ebbs and flows in work?
  • Was there adequate vacation/holiday coverage to maintain service levels and abilities?

The fourth quarter offers an excellent opportunity for attorneys to take stock of their available resources for future planning. Year’s end is the best time to determine whether existing resources were strained during periods of high volume or critical deadlines.

Thinking ahead, a viable option to enable practice growth would be to create a flexible staffing plan that utilizes skilled resources through virtual means. These highly qualified personnel can perform tasks from the simple to complex, managing and completing a diverse range of projects that may otherwise be referred outside your practice.

Virtual paralegals are your secret weapon to achieving growth in 2017. However, before working in the virtual realm, there are some things you need to do to ensure a productive and rewarding experience:

  • Take stock of the knowledge and skills of your staff, which will enable better alignment of supplemental resources who can fill the gaps
  • Review IT and office systems, making sure they’re configured properly to interface with cloud computing workflows
  • Assess data storage and security protocols to determine adequacy, ability for remote access and scalability

Taking the steps outlined above will help yield the best possible results when working with virtual paralegals. Something else to consider: taking a deeper look at these crucial areas of your practice may be the difference between increasing billable hours or having to turn away work.

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