Productivity Tools for Lawyers is a broad category. It can range from simple auto-correct-like applications like TextExpander, to Personal Productivity Systems like Get Things Done (GTD). This portal, unlike others on our site, will highlight products instead of comparing them directly. After all, no one has ever asked whether they should use Grammarly instead of TextExpander.
Accordingly, one should not expect these products to tick every box in the Features category. Some will simply not be applicable to them. In fact, the Features portion of this portal simply categorizes and passes-on basic information. It doesn’t to draw one-for-one comparisons. Your most useful filter is likely going to be the “Type of Tool” category.
In this Productivity Tools for Lawyers portal you can learn about features, read community reviews, get additional details, and find the best application for your law firm. If you see an Affinity Partner badge, it means Lawyerist Insiders are entitled to a discount. (Already a member? Log in here. If not, register here—it’s free!)
How to Choose Productivity Tools for Lawyers
There are scads of tools out there purporting to enhance your productivity. Some are for lawyers specifically, while others are just generally for offices or small businesses. If you can think of a way that you could be more productive. Someone has probably built a tool for that. All of these options can overwhelm you, and it’s easy to begin in the wrong place.
In choosing productivity tools for their practices, lawyers should follow Steven Covey’s advice and start with the end in mind. You’ll get nowhere by looking at a shiny new product and asking, “how can I use this?” These tools must be a solution to a specifically defined problem. Stick to the basic ideas below and you should be able to select a product with relative ease.
Define your Processes
A productivity tool (especially for lawyers) is useless in a vacuum. Clearly defined processes and methods go much further toward creating productivity than any piece of software. Once you clarify these, you should see obvious places where technology can enhance your processes. If you need help starting, we have some great resources on Personal Productivity and Project Mangement. Additionally, if you haven’t done so already, go ahead and join our Lawyerist Insiders program to gain access to even more resources for free.
State your Problem with Specificity
Once you’ve defined your processes (and hopefully documented them), you can start to determine where you need resources. Is there a repeatable process that you can automate? Could you organize your information better? Or maybe you could benefit from a tool that will remind you of your tasks?
Test the Products
Most productivity tools will either give lawyers a free trial, or have a “freemium” pricing tier (or both). Don’t just select a single product and dive-in—however tempting that may be. Find a few products that you think will solve your problem and take them for a test-drive. Use them for a week and see how you feel about them. Many times, testing out one product will give you insight into the other one.
It is our experience that free versions of Productivity Tools for Lawyers often don’t provide the critical features of the product. If a tool is saving you time, it is likely saving you money. If that is the case, then it may be worth it to at least purchase an initial tier.
Additionally, if you do get the requisite benefits out of the free tier of the product, ask yourself why. Why are they offering this for free? If, like a personal Gmail account, or a free Zoom account, the provider is farming your and your clients’ information, then you may need to upgrade your subscription just for ethical reasons.
Productivity Tools for Lawyers (Alphabetical List)
- Review of TextExpander, cross-platform productivity software, for its usefulness with small to medium-sized law firms and solo attorneys. Learn more about TextExpander.
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