What is Practice Management Software?
Now that we’ve clearly defined what Document Management software, lets dig into the other half of our article: Practice Management Software.
Legal Practice Management (LPM) software, as the name implies, helps a law firm manage their practice. If Document Management software is designed to manage the documents, email and content of a law firm and its cases, it’s fair to summarize Practice Management software as managing cases and the business side of a law practice.
Practice Management Software Capabilities
While the exact functionality within Practice Management software will vary from one application to another, typically Practice Management software will include:
- Customer and Contact database – a central, firm-wide contact and client database.
- Case database – including (sometimes) details unique to different areas of law and types of cases.
- Calendaring – ranging from a basic firm-wide calendar to sophisticated rules-based calendaring and deadline management (docketing).
- Time Tracking – Recording of billable (and non-billable) hours.
- Billing – Invoicing clients for time and expenses.
- Form/Document Assembly – The automated creation and population of specific court forms and fillings.
- Accounting – Some LPM applications include built-in, full-fledged accounting. Others require you to maintain accounting in other software, such as QuickBooks
- Basic Document Storage/Linking * – More on this shortly
Popular Practice Management Applications
Popular Legal Practice Management applications include: