A Place for Every Email and Every Email in its Place: Improving your inbox organization

  • April 02, 2020
  • Shawn Erker

In a modern law firm, it is not uncommon for the bulk of a file to be located in the lawyer’s inbox. This includes records of client instructions, agreements between counsel, strategy discussions, and scheduling confirmations. This can also include attachments and documents circulated between lawyers and clients that are sometimes never stored in a file management system or separate drive and are only accessible by digging through ancient conversations.

While your email application’s search algorithm can help navigate a cluttered inbox, it can quickly become frustrating when an old message requires either an accurate recollection of the precise language used in the relevant communication or a laborious review of triaged yet still-voluminous lists of old conversations.

Equally important: If a file must be shared or transferred to an associate or new counsel, making sense of a lengthy file-history can be frustrating if communications are only organized chronologically. You never know when a colleague may need to make sense of the way you have stored key information on the file.

Here are a few simple and straight-forward ways to keep your inbox organized, save time, and ensure your files are easily comprehensible.