As you turn the page on a new year, now is a perfect time to clean up your calendaring system.
Managing deadlines and dates is a crucial skill for lawyers. Yet too often legal professionals rely on outdated tech and clunky systems to keep their calendars up-to-date.
Here are 4 practices that will help you stay ahead of deadlines, attend to client needs, and have more peace of mind in the year ahead:
1. Integrate calendars
Many of us use more than one calendar app or software, to benefit from different features. Google Calendar and Outlook are ubiquitous in the legal world, but they don’t provide many of the features useful specifically for lawyers. Case management calendars, like those in Filevine, provide advanced legal deadline tools and matter-specific calendaring options.
Reap the benefits of all of them by integrating your calendars together, so the events from one automatically show up in the other.
Filevine integrates with Google Calendar and Office 365, so Gmail and Outlook users can easily access a combined calendar. The deadlines generated in Filevine will show up on integrated Google Calendar and Office 365 calendars, and the events you schedule in
To get an event on a specific project’s calendar, either schedule it within Filevine or add the project’s email into the invitee list. For an easier option, use the Google Add-on and Outlook Add-in for Filevine, which lets you easily link events with a specific project in your case files.
As you integrate calendars, it’s best practice to edit events in the calendar where they were created.
2. Automate deadlines
Don’t worry about figuring out what’s due next in a case you’re working on. Don’t waste time counting dates. Use automation tools to automatically schedule key deadlines for each legal matter.
Filevine’s deadline chain feature lets you fully customize the kinds of deadlines you deal with, based on jurisdiction and case type. Input one key date, and all the dates before and after are automatically populated in your calendar for that matter.
They’ll also be available to everyone who’s a follower for that project, making sure the entire team can deal with issues at the right time.
3. Use project calendars
In addition to your personal work calendar, it’s helpful to have calendars linked to specific matters. Within Filevine, clicking the Calendar tab in a project will let you see all the deadlines, appointments, and special dates specifically connected to that matter.
The ‘list view’ option is especially valuable for seeing all these dates in one place, without needing to scroll through different months in a calendar. Use ‘list view’ so your team can get a full overview, and when meeting with clients to help them understand what’s ahead for their matter.
4. Add time-tracking
Filevine’s calendars can also automatically add time-tracking for events, making it easier to record the billable hours you’re putting into a matter.
When you create the event in Filevine, you can track time for some or all participants, choose your billing code, and select whether it’s both billable and chargeable. This time will be tracked within Filevine, where you can then generate automatic invoices for your work.
Your time is your most important resource. Make sure you’re spending it well by using better practices when it comes to your legal calendars.