4 web apps that keep my business jetting through the cloud

My business is my law practice. I’m a small practice so being efficient is critical. I cannot have technology be an obstacle, it must be a benefit. That is where cloud services come in. The benefits of a local application, anywhere you can access the Internet, without the maintenance requirements. Below are four applications that are vital in running my business on a day to day basis:

1. Google Apps for Business. ($50 per user, but there is a free version). The suite of products that includes mail, calendar and contacts is the backbone of my communicaiton and contact management. The Gmail-like mail is super-flexible and it is nice to be able to login in almost anywhere and see the same interface.

2. Bill4Time. (plans starting at free trial, plans starting at $19.95 a month). Without billing, I would be operating a charity. To meet my billing needs, I use Bill4Time a web-based service that allows fairly detailed time tracking, invoicing and invoice management. It appears to be written for attorneys and CPAs.

3. Google Reader. (Free) I need to current on news and cases to communicate with my clients. I accomplish this through Google Reader which easily integrates without almost every other product I use.

4. Google Voice. (Free) My go-to service for managing communications, both spoken and textual. Google Voice allows me to have one telephone number that can forward to multiple numbers and the ability to text from the same number. The ability to manage my Google Voice account to a granular level from the web is also a plus.

What web-apps are critical in operating your business?

Posted by Shawn Roberts

On this blog, I write about and try to answer practical Oklahoma legal questions. My focus and most experience is in estate planning and business issues including Oklahoma non-compete law. I make a living as an attorney in the law firm I founded, Shawn J. Roberts, P.C. in Oklahoma City. I live in Edmond with my wife Amy and my two children, Sam (19) and David (11). We live precisely in the path of where the "wind comes sweeping down the plains."