Nest Legal is a firm that provides wills, conveyancing, family law and all the legal needs that spring up as you start to build a nest for your family.
I started Nest Legal after I had my son and realised what a headache it was for working parents to see a lawyer. I brainstormed all the things that annoyed people about traditional lawyers (inaccessibility outside business hours, unclear pricing, poor communication) and designed a service that I would want to use. That ethos has stuck with the firm even today.
One of the things I love about Smokeball is the tasks management function, as it speaks to our firm's core values. For example, I can log on and see that Clarissa has eight tasks left for today; Jeremy's only got two; I've cleared mine, so I'll say, ‘Jeremy, you take two, I'll take two, and we will all leave the office at the same time.' That's in line with our firm's values — no one person has to stay back because one of their client matters has blown out.
Another feature I love is Communicate because it reduces the burden of email. As lawyers, we get so many emails that we don't need to add emails between team members. The messaging and file sharing platform is built directly into Smokeball; you can send and receive secure messages and files with your clients or third parties and quickly locate messages without searching through numerous emails.
We'll often think of new ways of doing things, and I love how open Smokeball is to hearing from us. We wanted to be able to use emojis in the Communicate app. The Smokeball support team said, 'Even if other law firms might not be open to having emojis in their Communicate, if it's really important to Nest Legal, we will look into adding smiley faces in the messaging system.' And they did.
The activity recording function, AutoTime is really valuable to us too. We don't record time because we are a fixed fee practice, but it's helpful to see where you spend your time. You can get an indication that you spent four hours on that Letter of Advice, so next time you scope it, you'll take that into account. I don't want to waste everyone's time by asking them to manually record everything, so it's useful having this function ticking away in the background.
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