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10 Steps to a Digital Practice in the Cloud, 2nd Edition by Bryan L. Smith, John H. Higgins

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10

Workflow Software

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Of all the digital practice initiatives we are presenting in this book, workflow software is likely to be the one you are least familiar with. Ironically, this may prove to be one of the most important initiatives because in a certain way, it is the glue that binds all the other initiatives together. We will explain the nature of workflow software and provide guidance about how you can implement it in your practice to manage your paperless business processes.

The origin of workflow software is based in the need to provide a tool to manage the flow of engagements or documents in a paperless environment. Think about how many practitioners manage the flow of their engagements in a traditional model by relying on the use of red rope and Redweld expanding file pockets to store the engagement working papers, including current year, prior, and the permanent file. A typical scenario goes like this: The folders on the floor on the left side of the desk are the clients I am working on next; the folders on the floor to the right of my desk are the ones I am ready to transfer to the next person in line: the folders behind me on the credenza are the ones that I am waiting for information from the client; and the folder on my desk is the client I am currently working on. Does this scenario sound familiar to you? Chances are you have employed some variation of this workflow ...

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