In-house legal teams are often on call, fielding requests from all over the business. But there’s no pager; instead they’re bombarded with emails, phone calls, and Slack messages. Keeping track of all those requests and projects is no easy feat.
In a time when legal teams are being asked to do more with less, streamlining intake and task management processes is more than just a nice-to-have, it’s a game-changer for teams looking to work faster and get more done.
But what exactly is legal intake and legal task management? Are they two sides of the same coin or completely different beasts? As it turns out, it’s a little bit of both. While legal intake and task management are different processes, they go hand-in-hand.
What Is Legal Intake?
Legal intake is the process of gathering the need-to-know information about legal matters and requests to review agreements, IP concerns, HR issues, compliance questions, or marketing materials. You can think of your legal intake process as the front door of your team. To arrive at the legal team, everything must go through the front door.
But the front door looks different for different teams. For some, it can be as manual as keeping an eye on their inbox and jotting down requests in a spreadsheet. Others might use tools like Zendesk or Google Forms. And for those looking for a more automated, turnkey solution, there are tools designed specifically for legal teams.
No matter the process, in order for it to truly work, it’s critical that teams get the info they need up front. Forms are a handy way to do this, helping you capture the information you need at the start to prioritize and execute on the request, skip the back-and-forth, and save time for both your team and the requester. And to make sure everyone's on board with the new process, try embedding or linking the form in tools your team already uses, like Slack or your intranet.
It’s easy for legal teams to overlook the intake process and spend their budget elsewhere. However, without a proper intake process, teams end up wasting precious time and money hunting down requests or playing ping-pong with requesters for more info.
A centralized, standardized intake process helps legal teams stay focused and get more done.
What Is Legal Task Management?
Intake is just the beginning. The real legal work starts once a request comes in.
Once the request has been submitted through your intake process, a legal team member can kick off the task management process. They'll review the request, prioritize it, and assign it to the right team member.
As with intake, there are countless ways to handle legal task management. Some legal teams stick to old-school methods like spreadsheets, notepads, or even whiteboards. And while they can make it work, they often outgrow it or simply grow tired of spending time managing it.
Others might use project management tools like Jira, Asana, or Monday.com to cut costs. But while these might save on expenses, they don't always save on time. These general-purpose tools don’t cater to the unique needs of a legal team, leaving some teams managing agreement tasks in their CLM and everything else in their project management tool.
Moreover, using a tool the entire company can access makes some legal teams nervous. To avoid others stumbling across sensitive information, they may choose to handle these types of tasks in yet another location.
Using Tech to Improve Legal Intake and Legal Task Management
Using a single tool for legal intake and task management reduces the risk of requests falling through the cracks so you can work faster and get more done. Plus, it gives you a bird’s-eye view of the types of requests coming in and where potential roadblocks might be.
Even better — adopt a legal task management tool that is connected to your CLM. This way, you have all the context you need to complete all your tasks, from content review to agreement tasks and approvals. LinkSquares Prioritize is connected to the LinkSquares Cloud, so your team can access requests, documents, and approvals in one place.
Legal intake and task management are the dynamic duo of the legal service process - while they're two different things, the success of one depends on the other. So if you want your legal team to zip through requests and keep the business engine humming, it’s time to standardize your legal intake and task management.
See how LinkSquares Prioritize can help you manage intake and tasks – request a demo today.
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