Ten Tips for Outsourcing Back Office Work At Your Law Firm

When you decide to outsource your legal back office work, it can be a great way to help your law firm grow without causing you to incur significant costs related to hiring additional legal staff or moving into a larger space.

Yet, while the benefits of outsourcing can be numerous, many law firms are still on the fence about sending their work to others. That is why to help ease some of these concerns and worries, we have prepared the following blog post. In it, we will go over some tips you should consider when outsourcing your back office legal work.

close up of report on conference table with four workers gathered around

Identify Your Goals

Before outsourcing the back office, it is important to first identify your goals. This way, you can better understand precisely what types of back office services you will need. For instance, do you want to outsource certain tasks to save money? Or are you looking for help to free up your lawyers to work on other critical tasks?

Once you have a better idea of what specifically your firm needs, you will be able to find the right back office legal services for your firm.

Find Experts

After you determine what help you need, you next need to find the right people to take on this work. The worst thing you can do is hand off critical tasks like billing and collections to those who are not prepared to take on these tasks.

That is why you should look into experts who are qualified to take on these duties, are willing to help your firm, and are ready to help you and your legal team every step of the way.

Investigate Them Thoroughly

The best thing you can do when you find professionals that specialize in back office services for law firms is to investigate them thoroughly, such as verifying the company's processes, their background, and the work that they are best known for.

You also want to verify that working with this outsourcing firm does not create conflicts of interest or threaten your firm's ethical standards. If you discover any of these issues, it is important to discuss them with the company right away.

Explore All Outsourcing Options

In general, when most firms or businesses consider outsourcing, they think it involves sending work to other countries such as India, where the cost of living is less, and the labor is often cheaper. While this may provide your company with some benefits, you may also want to consider other outsourcing options, including domestic outsourcing. 

For example, according to the American Bar Association Journal, outsourcing particular legal work to companies in the United States can actually be cheaper or the equivalent to finding work overseas. Plus, there is also the added bonus that when you work with teams in the United States, you know they are familiar with the ethical guidelines and the laws of the country.

Ultimately, it is up to you and your firm to explore both of these options and figure out which one works best.

Consider Shipping Costs/Delays

A bill of lading or BOL is a legal document issued by a carrier to a shipper that details the quantity, the type, and the destination of the shipped goods. This bill of lading also serves as a shipment receipt when the carrier delivers the goods at the destination.

Because the right BOL can help you avoid unforeseen freight charges and unnecessary time constraints, such as when the shipment is delivered to the wrong address, it may be in your best interest to consider domestic support to ensure many of these issues are avoided.

Obtain Consent

Whenever you are doing any legal work, it is important to verify that the actions you take are within the ethical rules. That is why before getting into any contracts with a back office outsourcing firm, you should make sure you retain all the appropriate agreements and obtain consent from the clients to use these services.

This will not only help you keep everything in the open, so everybody knows what is going on, but it will also ensure that you are staying compliant with the ethical regulations that are required by the legal profession.

Optimize for Time Zones

One of the benefits of outsourcing internationally, or more specifically to areas in different time zones, is that your work can get accomplished faster, primarily because while you are sleeping, the work you are having outsourced is getting done.

For these reasons, when you are considering sending your work overseas, keep in mind how these time zones can work in your favor.

Heed Privacy Concerns

Another important concern you need to consider before sending work to outsourcing companies is their privacy protocols. It should be a top priority for your firm to make sure your client's information and your firm's private details remain private. This will not only ensure your firm does not break any laws but that your clients' needs and rights are met.

Consequently, before you work with a company that handles back office services for law firms, you should first confirm that these companies are familiar with the privacy standards of the United States and can sign the proper disclosure agreements if necessary.

Bill Carefully & Ethically

One other critical issue that may arise when outsourcing your legal work is your billing, primarily how it affects your outsourced legal work. According to the American Bar Association, a law firm should not ethically add a surcharge to any work done by an outsourced paralegal or lawyer. This means that the rate the firm is charged by the outsourced company should be the same rate billed to the client.

For these reasons, you want to find a back office outsourcing company that meets these billing requirements.

Supervise

One reason many law firms are wary about outsourcing their legal work to other companies is they worry about losing control of their firm and their work. However, when you work with the right back office outsourcing firm, this issue will not be a concern. In fact, your firm will be there front and center, supervising those engaged in this legal work.

This should be something else you consider when outsourcing your firm's tasks to other countries, as it can be challenging supervising those overseas.

Back Office Services for Law Firms

If you are thinking about outsourcing some of your back office legal work, but are unsure about this process and how it can help you maximize revenue and your operational efficiency, do not wait any longer to get these concerns answered. 

Instead, reach out to Back Office Legal today for a free consultation and let us show you how we can become more than just your contractor but rather a part of your firm. 

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