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Summer is over (even if it takes a few weeks for the autumnal equinox to make it official). Now is the time to go back to school - and WIN something in the process!
Elementary, Middle School, High School, College. Everyone is heading back to school, so why not join them? If you read this newsletter, you already know about Affinity University: through our one-hour webinars we give you access to some of the most highly sought after legal technology speakers in the country - Sandy Adams, Steve Best, Cindy Emmerson, Debbie Foster, Barron Henley, Britt Lorish, Paul Unger...and many more are at your disposal, from the comfort of your own workspace, for a fraction of the cost of a traditional seminar.
We recently upgraded our training platform to provide you more of the features you asked for:
- The ability to register for more than one course at a time
- The ability to watch recorded sessions
- Full tech support throughout the session for any audio/video questions
SIGN UP TODAY! Create your Affinity University (AU) account (click on the AU link, then the green Log In/Sign Up button). Do this by September 15th and receive a 50% discount on any courses through the end of October. You'll also be registered in a drawing to win a $500 AU gift certificate to be used for AU classes.
What are you waiting for? Make this the year that you truly put your technology to use (at a fraction of the cost of traditional training!)
This month's newsletter continues our popular series of Microsoft Word tips, the Green Corner column, and the Current Versions list. So head back to school with our educational law office technology services, training, and tips.
| Feature Article - Let Affinity Help YOU Build a Foundation of Education|
- Affinity Welcomes Jennifer M. Ramovs, Esq., as Director of Education
If there is one thing we have learned in helping hundreds of law firms and legal departments implement all kinds of technology, it's that the best software in the world is useless if you don't know how to use it to its full potential. Every single project we undertake always includes training - as consultants we make sure that our clients learn how to use what they have.
But what about the new employee who comes on board after that project is complete, or the lawyer who needs a quick refresher on how to use Worldox? With that in mind, in 2009, we created Affinity University to provide easy to access, online training taught by consultants who are sharing what they've learned from decades of experience. And now, we are thrilled to announce the addition of Jennifer M. Ramovs to our team as Director of Education to direct Affinity University.
Read this month's Feature Article on Affinity University and our new Director of Education, Jennifer M. Ramovs.
|Affinity Announces New Default Services Division!|
- Assisting law firms handling mortgage foreclosures and related services
Affinity Consulting Group is pleased to announce the creation of our Default Services Division! This new team is based in our Miami, FL office and is comprised of consultants who all have extensive experience working with and for default services law firms and mortgage servicers.
Our Default Services Division specializes in assisting law firms that represent servicers and banks with mortgage foreclosures and other related services/practice areas with implementation of process management solutions. With over 25 years of combined experience in this area, our consultants review internal firm processes in detail, make recommendations for increasing efficiency while maintaining accuracy, and put adjusted processes into place within the process management software solution selected by the firm. Additionally, our team helps firms with their needs in the areas of billing and accounting, the paperless process, mail room automation and training.
Read the complete announcement introducing our Default Services Division.
| Affinity University - 29 Classes in September|
Affinity University is the go-to resource for online training on the legal software you and your team use every day. Focusing specifically on real world tips and tricks, our certified experts provide training on popular Practice Management, Time/Billing/Accounting, Document Management, Productivity Software and even Microsoft Office. Read about our account registration promotion in the Introduction to this newsletter. When you register for an AU class by September 15, you will be entered in a drawing for a $500 AU gift certificate.
This month we offer 29 AU classes to help you better use your practice management, time and billing, document management, and office suite software. As always, our goal is to provide you with convenient and affordable web-based training on the software you use most.
Special Notice to Local Bar Leaders and Members: Contact us to learn more about our local bar program. Send an email to email@example.com.
- PCLaw Front Office - Sept. 2, 11 a.m.
- Tabs3 Reporting - Sept. 2, 1 p.m.
- Microsoft Office Outlook 2010 Email Management - Sept 6, 11 a.m.
- Amicus Attorney Premium Edition Basics - Sept. 7, 11 a.m.
- Time Matters Basics - Sept. 7, 1 p.m.
- Amicus Attorney Small Firm Edition Basics - Sept. 7, 3 p.m.
- PracticeMaster Clients and Matters - Sept. 8, 3 p.m.
- Amicus Attorney Premium Edition Contacts and Calendar - Sept. 9, 11 a.m.
- Amicus Attorney Small Firm Edition Contacts and Calendar - Sept. 9, 1 p.m.
- Tabs3 Month End Best Practices - Sept. 9, 3 p.m.
- Microsoft Outlook 2010 Contacts, Calendars, and Tasks - Sept. 12, 11 a.m.
- Amicus Attorney Premium Edition Document Templates and End User Reports - Sept. 12, 1 p.m.
- Amicus Attorney Small Firm Edition Document Templates and End User Reports - Sept. 12, 3 p.m.
- Microsoft Word 2010 Basics - Sept. 13, 11 a.m.
- Microsoft Excel 2010 Basics - Sept. 14, 11 a.m.
- PCLaw Trust Accounting - Sept. 14, 1 p.m.
- Time Matters Contacts and Calendar - Sept. 14, 3 p.m.
- PracticeMaster Contacts and Calendar - Sept. 15, 3 p.m.
- Tabs3 Billing - Sept. 16, 3 p.m.
- Time Matters Matters - Sept. 19, 11 a.m.
- Amicus Attorney Small Firm Edition Files - Sept. 19, 1 p.m.
- Amicus Attorney Premium Edition Files - Sept. 19, 3 p.m.
- PCLaw Reporting - Sept. 20, 1 p.m.
- Tabs3 Trust Accounting - Sept. 21, 11 a.m.
- Worldox GX2 Advanced - Sept. 23, 1 p.m.
- Microsoft Word 2010 Advanced, Introduction to Styles - Sept. 23, 3 p.m.
- Amicus Attorney Premium Edition - Managing Communications - Sept. 28, 11 a.m.
- Amicus Attorney Small Firm Edition - Managing Communications, - Sept. 28, 1 p.m.
- Time Matters - Managing Communications - Sept. 28, 3 p.m.
| LexisNexis Practice Management Annual Conference (PMAC) Sept. 22-23 |
The year's LexisNexis PMAC is September 22 & 23 at the Loews Royal Pacific Resort at Universal Orlando. If you use a LexisNexis practice management or time/billing/accounting product such as PCLaw, Time Matters, or Juris, this is a terrific opportunity to learn how to better use your software. Affinity Consulting Group consultants Sandy Adams, Steve Best, Cindy Emmerson, and Alex MacDonald will be presenters at PMAC.
The setting will also be a huge attraction. People have always been captivated by the allure of the South Seas. At this year's PMAC, you can experience the wonder of such island paradises as Fiji, Bali and Hawaii without sailing halfway around the globe. The Loews Royal Pacific Resort is a AAA Four Diamond AwardŽ winning hotel that transports guests to the enchanted isles of the tropics.
Read more about the 2011 LexisNexis PMAC.
|Events in September |
September 1 - Affinity Partner Paul Unger presents a Trial Technology Workshop for the Ohio State Bar Association in Columbus. Live repeat in Fairfield on September 8 and Cleveland on September 13.
September 2 - Affinity Partner Barron K. Henley presents Start It Up, Reboot or Reload, a complete guide to law office technology for the Ohio State Bar Association in Columbus.
September 5-8 - Affinity Partner Steven J. Best will provide PCLaw training to the Australian LexisNexis Management Team in Sydney, Australia.
September 8 - Affinity Consultant Rian Fehrman speaks to the Carrollwood Community Bar Association (Northwest Hillsborough County, FL).
September 15-16 - Affinity Partner Barron K. Henley presents on a variety of law office technology topics at the Solo & Small Firm Institute held in conjunction with the State Bar of Michigan Annual Meeting in Dearborn.
September 15-17 - Affinity Consulting Group will be attending the Association of Legal Administrators (ALA) Region 3&4 Conference in Kansas City, MO.
September 19 - Affinity Partner Barron K. Henley presents The Lawyer's Ultimate Guide to The Best Technology for Your Practice for Minnesota CLE in Minneapolis.
September 19-23 - Affinty's Default Services Division holds its first annual "CaseAwareŽ Administrator Bootcamp" in Ft. Lauderdale, FL, for those firms that are utilizing the CaseAwareŽ Case Management Suite.
September 22 - Affinity Partner Debbie Foster speaks to the Austin, TX, Chapter of the Association of Legal Administrators (ALA) in Austin.
September 22-24 - Affinity Consulting Group consultants Sandy Adams, Steven J. Best, Cindy Emmerson, and Alex MacDonald will be presenters at the LexisNexis PMAC in Orlando, FL (see article in this newsletter).
|Microsoft Word Tip of the Month - Set Your Default Zoom Level |
We've visited many law offices and observed lawyers and staff working in Microsoft Word (all versions) with less than optimal Zoom settings. Too often, the Word window will stretch across the screen, but the document will be confined to a narrow area in the middle of the screen, making the text small and hard to read. In most cases, you want your Zoom setting to stretch the entire page width across Word's application window. When working with an especially small screen, such as a netbook or many of today's ultra-light notebooks, you may want to boost visibility by stretching the margin width across the Window.
Read our Microsoft Word Tip of the Month to learn how to set Word's default Zoom level.
Learn more Word tips by registering to attend our Affinity University Word 2010 Basics and Word 2010 Advanced on-line classes.
| Review - DisplayLink App Turns Your iPad into a Second Monitor for your Windows PC|
The benefits of using multiple monitors when working at your desk have been much discussed in this newsletter and on our
blog. Enjoying these benefits while using your notebook or netbook computer on the road has been more difficult to do. Who wants to carry a typical computer monitor with them on a business trip or vacation? There are portable monitors designed to be used with notebook computers, but they can be fairly bulky and often require a separate AC power connection. But there is a simple and free way to use a second monitor while traveling, if you have an iPad.
Read the DisplayLink for iPad review
|Mark Your Calendar Now for October PCLaw Training in Columbus, OH|
- Learn how to maximize PCLaw in your practice!
When it comes to technology, simply having it and knowing the best ways to use it in your day to day business can be two different things. Join instructors Steve Best and Alex Macdonald, in Columbus, Ohio, on October 25th and 26th for our upcoming workshop where we'll teach you the ins and outs of PCLaw.
For more information, or to register, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or 614.340.3444.
If you can't make it to Columbus in October for this outstanding program (not to mention Fall colors, apple cider, and Buckeye football), enroll in one of our Affinity University PCLaw classes
|Visit Affinity at ALL of the ALA Regional Conferences
As the newest Association of Legal Administrators (ALA) VIP Partner, Affinity is proud to be attending all of the ALA regional conferences this year. So come by our booth - you'll have a chance to meet our team in person, see Affinity University in action, win some cool stuff, and much more!
- September 15-17 - Kansas City, MO
- October 13-15 - Pittsburgh
- October 20-22 - Las Vegas
- October 27-29 - Seattle
- November 3 - 5 - Charlotte
|Largest Ever Amicus Attorney Upgrade Discounts with Purchase of Amicus Billing!
This month Gavel & Gown, developers of Amicus Attorney, are offering their largest ever discounts on upgrades for firms purchasing Amicus Premium Billing.
Amicus Billing is a terrific new time and billing application that adds billing, collections and trust to Amicus Attorney, the award winning Practice Management software. Amicus Billing requires Amicus Attorney Premium Edition 2011. In order to make it easier for firms to upgrade to Amicus Premium Edition 2011 easier, Gavel & Gown is offering substantial discounts on upgrade licenses. For example, customers with Amicus Attorney Small Firm Edition who purchase Amicus Billing will receive the following discounts:
- Upgrade to 2011 Premium Edition - save 50% off upgrade licenses
- Upgrade to 2011 Premium Edition and purchase Support - save 65% off upgrade licenses
- Upgrade to 2011 Premium Edition and purchase Maintenance - save 75% off upgrade licenses
- Plus - receive a free introductory online training class on Billing
Similar discounts are available for Amicus Premium Edition firms who want to upgrade to the 2011 version of their software when they purchase Amicus Premium Billing. For details, contact your Affinity Consulting Group office. This is a fantastic opportunity to upgrade your Amicus software at the lowest prices they've ever offered. This promotion ends September 30, 2011.
Make the most of your Amicus Attorney 2011 upgrade, check out our Affinity University classes for Amicus Attorney Small Firm and Premium Edition users.
| Looking for HotDocs? We've Got It!
HotDocs is the industry standard when it comes to document automation. Whether you are simply looking to use existing templates, build your own, or deploy an organization-wide solution, HotDocs has the software for you - and we can help you get it!
As a Platinum Partner of HotDocs, Affinity Consulting is an authorized reseller of all of their products. Looking for a quote or are you ready to buy? Contact us at 614.340.3444 or via email at email@example.com.
|Dragon Upgrade Discount to v11.5 |
Nuance, the makers of Dragon NaturallySpeaking speech recognition software, is offering discount upgrades to its latest version, v11.5, until September 30, 2011
. If you have Dragon 9 or 10 Legal, you can upgrade to 11.5 Legal for $199.99, a $100 savings. If you have Dragon 9 or 10 Professional, you can upgrade to 11.5 Professional also for $199.99, again a $100 savings. I
f you already have v11, the downloadable upgrade
to v11.5 is free of charge and available for download. In order to take advantage of these savings, contact our Affinity Store at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Dragon NaturallySpeaking 11.5 has improved correction features and better speed and accuracy. It also features the new Dragon Remote Microphone capability that, depending on your office or home wireless network configuration, lets you use your iPhone, iPod Touch, or iPad running iOS 4.2 or later as a wireless dictation microphone.
Visit the Affinity Store to see the full range of Dragon NaturallySpeaking software and compatible hardware. And make the most of your software and hardware purchase by enrolling in an Affinity University class designed specifically for legal users of NaturallySpeaking.
| Affinity Offers Managed IT Services
In addition to our expert consulting services in the area of law office software, Affinity Consulting Group offers a full range of Managed IT services.
Small and medium-sized law firms can rarely afford a full-time IT staff. Let Affinity serve as your IT staff - we can manage your technology resources for you and correct any problems, often before you know anything is wrong.
For information on the many IT services we can offer your firm, contact your Affinity Consulting Group office.
| Green Corner - Reduce Paper Waste in Your Firm|
According to Reduce.org, we waste a lot of paper in U.S. workplaces:
It doesn't have to be this way. Going digital by changing your primary work-product output to PDF instead of paper goes a long way toward eliminating paper waste. Think of paper less as a final product and more as a container for information. Then recognize that digital information containers, such as PDF files, are much more portable, flexible, secure, and efficient.
- The average office worker uses 10,000 sheets of copy paper each year.
- The United States has less than 5% of the world's population yet consumes 30% of the world's paper.
- Over 40% of wood pulp goes toward the production of paper.
- Printing and writing paper equals about one-half of U.S. paper production.
Switching to digital output instead of paper is much more feasible now than in the past with courts accepting electronic filing and clients, co-counsel, and opposing counsel accustomed to receiving by email and reviewing digital rather than paper documents. You may consider adding a clause to your fee agreement allowing clients to authorize sending only digital copies of documents, freeing your staff from the time-consuming process of printing and mailing paper copies and saving paper in the process.
| Current Versions of Law Office Software |