• Tim Kenney

The Treasure Map in Plain Sight - Time Policy Management

If you were given a map to a buried treasure that would renew itself monthly and would take minimal effort to retrieve, you’d be tempted to use it wouldn’t you? What if the only “catch” to retrieving that monthly treasure was to actually adhere to standards you’ve already agreed to follow? What if this was not only safe and easy to do, but would have tangential benefits, for example, improving relationships with your clients? You’d be insane not to use it, wouldn’t you?

Well, apparently, most law firms are insane! That’s because although many realize it may be a problem, they still don’t effectively enforce and manage their agreed upon time entry policies.

I have been in legal technology since 1995, following four years of practicing law. I started in legal tech with a software company that had a product called DTE (Digital Time Entry – later purchased by Intapp). Even back in those dinosaur days, the benefits of entering time daily, in a detailed and consistent manner and billing it rapidly and as agreed upon was well understood.

Let’s face it, those of us who have billed time for a living know that tracking your time can be a little tedious. But we also know its importance. And with the very excellent time entry software that exists for law firms today, properly and accurately entering time isn’t difficult - it just requires discipline. Time entry discipline applies not only the timekeepers to track their time, but law firm administration to enforce the tracking of the time through time policy management.

All firms have written time entries policies. It’s usually explained to Associates and Laterals their very first week of work. Not properly managing and enforcing time entry policy has significant financial consequences. That’s why we at Enable have created a breakthrough product to help law firms with this called TimePolicyManager. It works with all major legal software time entry products and makes sure that time is entered according to firm requirements.

Positive results of enforcing time entry policies can lead to “treasure” which includes:

  • Time billed sooner is likely to be more accurate and less likely to be written down/off resulting in greater realization of revenue. This is where huge savings will be found.

  • Time billed sooner less likely to be disputed or incorrect which leads to better client relations

  • Cost of money to float firm finances to support WIP and Accounts Receivables changes considerably.

  • Any CFO can tell you time billed sooner results in carrying less “inventory” and dramatically increases cash flow

Dubious you can move your time to bill from two months or more to two weeks (or less)? Contact us at Enable to discuss how we have achieved this in part with our TimePolicyManager (TPM) software for law firms. Time policy management is the treasure map that your firm can use almost immediately. Contact Enable to discuss our TimePolicyManager software to start your savings!

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