Congratulations! You weathered the onslaught of the pandemic and transitioned to distributed work from home offices. That home office relocation is looking permanent for much of your workforce so it is time to harden the systems that make a work-from-home (WFH) law firm function. A digital mail room is one such system. Using existing scan-to-email utilities at the outset of the pandemic is not an effective permanent solution for a law firm’s mail operation. It was never intended to be, but most legal practices are just beginning to reconsider how essential operations like daily mail will function with a distributed workforce. It is now time to remodel your digital mail room into a permanent, effective operation.
Your firm isn’t going back to paper mail delivery distributed to desks in the city offices. That was a faulty, antiquated process anyway. Digital is better – you just need some finishing work to make it a reliable, secure operation. Your attorneys and staff need to stay productive anywhere they work. Legal technology professionals are now considering the daily mail operation as one of their firm’s greatest opportunities to improve. It’s time to make your digital mail room a permanent fixture of your remodeled law firm.
Here are three keys to remodeling your digital mail room:
- Deliver legal mail to the document management system (DMS)
- Embed quality controls, monitoring and reporting
- Make the mail room operation simple and efficient
Deliver legal mail to the DMS, not to email. Legal mail is mission critical and time-sensitive, and it contains confidential client information. Once mail items are scanned, the PDF files are destined for the DMS, their permanent home. It’s easy to set up daily mail folders for each DMS user, and when scanned mail items arrive, the DMS provides a move function so that users (or support staff) can place the PDFs into the proper matter folder. Routing scanned legal mail items through the email system is inefficient, and it’s a multi-faceted security risk. Using the email system to distribute scanned legal mail is not an acceptable long term solution.
Embed quality controls, monitoring and reporting in the digital mail room solution. Perfectly scanned mail items delivered reliably each day to waiting attorneys – that’s the standard. Attorneys working at home don’t have nearby staff to fix errors or tweak process for them. The digital mail room should have embedded software and process to ensure quality. Did every received mail item get scanned, with all pages and image quality checked, and the envelop scanned as a last page? Is the mail room technology connected to a help desk to assist when needed? Can we run reports to track volumes and productivity, so that peak days, growth and operational efficiencies can be anticipated?
Make the mail room operation simple and efficient. We hear many stories about how all sorts of exceptions and process variations were put in place to accommodate attorney requests when a firm first put a makeshift mail scanning operation in place. The result is spotty performance, jagged quality, and a high reliance on clerical staff memory and Post-it Note bulletins. A remodeled digital mail room needs a best practice approach with software designed expressly for this operation, and repeatable workflows like scanning stacks. This reduces dependency on staff heroics and it establishes much needed reliability in the operation. It also enables repeatability across multiple law office locations, or a better path to mail centralization across offices… A game changer for law firms embracing distributed work.
There you go. Three keys to remodeling your digital mail room, for the better future we’re starting to see. Of course, you will want a good contractor with the proper tools to do this remodeling job. That’s the unmatched expertise you get from DocSolid along with the Airmail2 software you need to create your Digital Mail Room.
Learn much more in this white paper
7 Reasons to Upgrade to a Digital Mail Room