How We Work with Law Firms
Delivering a Comprehensive, Streamlined Bookkeeping Solution
Supporting Strategies offers a range of outsourced bookkeeping and controller services that will transform the financial management of your law firm.
If you have started or run a law firm, you know the importance of serving clients and growing the practice. But acting as a controller — or handling bookkeeping and other critical back-office functions — can distract you and your staff from these vital responsibilities. It’s no wonder that over 70% of small businesses choose to outsource at least one back-office function.*
At Supporting Strategies, small business bookkeeping and controller services is our core business. For over 15 years, Supporting Strategies’ locally owned and operated offices have served thousands of companies. Working with us eliminates the need to hire a controller, an HR administrator or an accounts payable manager. We can fill all those functions, giving your firm one comprehensive, cost-effective, long-term solution for your back-office needs. As a result, you and your team can focus on what you do best.
What you can earn per hour working on a legal case far exceeds what you will spend for an hour of professional bookkeeping services — so take comfort in allowing yourself to offload financial tasks and turn your attention exclusively to business development and client work. This will free you up to focus on navigating to the best possible outcome for your clients with confidence that your law firm is managing its financials effectively, from payroll to expenses and invoices. You will also steer clear of the frustration that comes with trying to manage every aspect of your firm’s operations — a choice that can lead you to burnout and potentially even lost revenue.
Keeping up with client billing and following up on unpaid invoices can be a considerable challenge while you’re juggling the workflow involved with multiple legal cases. Before you know it, you can end up with cash flow problems. By entrusting the financial inflow and outflow to Supporting Strategies, you’ll ensure that client invoices are prepared and delivered in a timely manner — and that accounts receivable is closely monitored and invoice collections are followed up on regularly.
Beyond knowing how to assign billable hours and ensuring that invoices are sent and paid on time, take advantage of budgeting and financial analysis services. Supporting Strategies can evaluate your day-to-day operations and suggest improvements that have the potential to transform the financial management of your law firm.
Many law firms are so busy managing demanding caseloads that even if they’ve invested in industry-specific software, such as Clio, Harvest, Sage Timeslips, or MyCase, they don’t have the time or in-house expertise to put it to its fullest use. Supporting Strategies recommends the use of Clio, which includes time tracking, invoicing, and an IOLTA (Interest on Lawyers Trust Accounts)/trust accounting feature — but regardless of the software chosen, adapting it to the firm’s processes is a top priority.
Having a time-tested financial structure in place for time tracking will come as a relief to both your firm’s employees and your clients, as you won’t need to worry about potential misallocation of worked hours or unorganized recordkeeping practices.
When holding money on behalf of clients or third parties, you need a trust account — which must be separate from your personal or business bank account. You need these accounts to hold retainer fees, legal settlements, and real estate transactions. Each state’s bar association regulates the handling of trust accounts and imposes strict penalties, including disbarment, for mishandling them. A professional bookkeeping service such as Supporting Strategies will help ensure that interest on these accounts is dealt with correctly, and that reconciliation of trust accounts happens in a timely way. These actions will mitigate your risks of incurring a penalty.
In many law firms, one employee handles all the bookkeeping and other back-office functions, leaving the company vulnerable during instances of illness, sick leave, or vacation. In those instances, Supporting Strategies can provide full back-office support and offer flexibility in meeting the firm’s staffing needs — from a controller role to HR administrator or accounts receivable manager.
Letting go of financial and administrative tasks allows you to build the kind of legal expertise that only you can bring to your casework, thus providing you with the most important and effective tool with which to grow your law firm and build your reputation as an industry leader.
We were in the middle of making a lot of plans, but the lack of data was holding us back. Eventually we realized it made sense to hire someone and not try to do this in house.
*Source: Wasp Barcode Technologies, “Small Business Report — Accounting,” 2015.