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|Affinity Is About More Than IT - Introducing YourExecutive™ Law Firm Management Program
For many years, Affinity Consulting Group has worked with thousands of law firms to improve their efficiency through the use of technology. But we have always been more than IT consultants. We are business management experts too.|
In order to make our business management skills more widely known and available to our clients, old and new, last month we announced Affinity's YourExecutive law firm management program under the direction of Liz Lamar in our Tampa Bay office.
Liz assists clients around the country in the areas of business process reengineering, strategic and crisis management, team building and conflict resolution. She is a certified Lean Six Sigma Sensei and is one of the co-founders of The Law Firm Revolution: Do More with LeSS.
Read the details about YourExecutive here or contact Liz Lamar via email or phone at 727-544-5400
| Tabs3 Connect - Best of Both Worlds|
Can't decide whether to keep your Practice Management software planted firmly on the ground, or to take a giant leap into the Cloud? You might not have to pick.
Tabs3 and PracticeMaster Platinum users are about to get the best of both worlds. With the release of Tabs3 Connect - you get access to your data from your mobile device - but your data stays put - safely at your office, on your own server. Whether you are using an iPhone, Android, iPad, Mac or tablet - any device with an internet browser - you can use Tabs3 Connect.
Please sign up for one of our Free, 30 minute Webinars, where Affinity Partner Britt Lorish will demonstrate the phenomenal features of Tabs3 Connect.
Monday, September 10, 2012 at 10:00 a.m. EDT
Wednesday, September 19, 2012 at 2:00 p.m. EDT
Tuesday, September 25, 2012 at 10:00 a.m. EDT
Read more about Tabs3 Connect here.
|Affinity University - 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. If you "attend" a live AU webinar, you can watch it again within 30 days of the original live date at no additional charge.
September 11, 11 a.m. - Word Basics with Barron K. Henley, Esq.
September 11, 2 p.m. - Adobe for Legal Professionals with Paul J. Unger, Esq.
September 12, 11 a.m. - Amicus Attorney Premium Edition 2012 New Features with Jennifer M. Ramovs, Esq.
September 13, 11 a.m. - Outlook Email Management with Jennifer M. Ramovs, Esq.
September 14, 3 p.m. - Worldox GX3 with Greg Bray.
September 18, 1 p.m. - Word - Introduction to Styles with Barron K. Henley, Esq.
September 19, 11 a.m - Cloud 101 with Debbie Foster.
September 20, 11 a.m. - Outlook - Contacts and Calendar with Jennifer M. Ramovs, Esq.
September 20, 1 p.m. - Excel for Legal Professionals with John Federico, Esq.
September 25, 1 p.m. - Word - Share and Compare with Barron K. Henley, Esq.
September 26, 11 a.m. - Time Matters - Basic Tips & Tricks with Jennifer M. Ramovs, Esq.
| Free Educational Webinars in September: Register, Log-in, Learn |
This month, Affinity offers a series of FREE thirty-minute educational webinars covering important law office technology topics. Here is the schedule:
The Case for Practice Management Software: Why Outlook Is Not Enough
Thu, Sep 6, 2012 1:00 PM - 1:30 PM EDT Register Here.
The Paperless Office: How to make it a reality in your practice
Fri, Sep 14, 2012 12:00 PM - 12:45 PM EDT Register Here.
Social Media- Networking or NOT Working?
Wed, Sep 19, 2012 12:00 PM - 12:30 PM EDT Register Here.
CLOUD 101: What it is, Who it is, and When its Right for YOU!
Wed, Sep 26, 2012 11:30 AM - 12:00 PM EDT Register Here.
|Upcoming Speaking Engagements |
- Adobe Acrobat for Lawyers
, Columbus, OH (with live simulcast to Perrysburg and Cleveland) - Paul J. Unger, Esq.
teaches the basics and legal-specific features of Adobe Acrobat.September 10-12
- Alaska Bar Technology Road Show
, Juneau (9/10), Anchorage (9/11), and Fairbanks (9/12), AK - Debbie Foster
speaks on a number of law office technology topics.September 14
- Solo & Small Firm CLE & Annual Meeting
, Columbia, SC - Steven Best, Esq., presents on Trust Accounting, Cloud Computing, and Tips for Small Firm Lawyers.September 14
- LexPort Tech Expo
, St. Charles, MO - Barron K. Henley, Esq.
presents on Email Management, Word Tips, and Document Automation.September 20-21
- Solo & Small Firm Institute/State Bar Annual Meeting
, Grand Rapids, MI - Barron K. Henley, Esq.
, speaks on several topics including Campaign Technology on a Beer Budget, Malpractice Avoidance, Business Continuity, Cloud Services, Anywhere Lawyering, Word and Tech Tips, and the Nuts and Bolts of a Personal Computer.September 21-22
- Florida Bar Solo & Small Firm Conference
, Orlando, FL - Debbie Foster
speaks on saving money and time by moving to a paperless law practice, the ethics of using social media, and technology tips.September 26
- Trial Technology Workshop
, Columbus, OH (with live simulcasts in Akron and Perrysburg, OH) - Paul J. Unger, Esq.
, speaks about the most effective uses of technology in litigation based on his experience in hundreds of cases.
| Worldox Tip of the Month - Dealing with Dates in Emails
Worldox is the perfect location to manage all of your Outlook messages as they relate to your clients and your firm, however you need to understand that the MODIFIED DATE on an email message will change when you open
and message and hit reply!
The reason for this is apparent if you open any message that you have previously replied to - you will see the notation that "YOU REPLIED TO THIS MESSAGE ON...." in the message header. The message has been modified to include this tracking information, which in turn means that the file modified date is changed. This often throws out the chronological listing of messages when sorted by MODIFIED DATE.Read the complete Worldox tip to learn how to solve the "modified date" problem
Atticus Practice Builder Workshop Coming to Orlando in October
If you are working as hard as you can, putting in 50 to 60 hours a week, working weekends, missing vacations, ignoring your family, but you still can't get your practice on track, there is something you can do.
Attend the next Atticus Practice Builder workshop in Orlando, FL, on October 26 and 27. This two-day intensive workshop is designed to reduce stress, eliminate interruptions, increase revenues and improve client service while allowing you to get home on time!
Atticus asked attorneys attending a recent workshop how they felt about the Atticus Practice Builder. Listen here
to this short 2 minute video to hear what they had to say.
For more information, contact Bob Zamarra
at 352-383-0490. To register, click here
| Dragon NaturallySpeaking 12 Featured in TechnoLawyer - Upgrade Discounts This Month |
If you read this newsletter, you should also be a member of the TechnoLawyer Community
and receive its informative newsletters. Recently, TechnoLawyer founder Neil Squillante described the new version of Dragon NaturallySpeaking in his TL NewsWire newsletter:
A twenty-something generation y lawyer I know once expressed surprise that some lawyers prefer writing by voice rather than by keyboard. However, when I was a twenty-something summer associate I witnessed firsthand baby boomer lawyers who could write faster by voice than my generation X peers could touch type. With many baby boomers far from retirement, many gen xers suffering from wrist pain, and speech recognition technology improving more rapidly than keyboards and being integrated into smartphones, the interest level in writing by voice has skyrocketed - even among generation y lawyers.
Nuance offers several versions of Dragon NaturallySpeaking at different price points. The Legal and other versions all share a new feature - up to a 20% accuracy improvement over the previous version out of the box. Overall, Nuance claims that version 12 can achieve 99% accuracy. As always, it becomes more accurate the more you use it, and as you correct it when it misunderstands you.
Dragon 12 Legal gets you up to speed faster because it recognizes legal terms without training. Also, you can import and share throughout your firm words and phrases that you use for certain clients or in your area of practice. The Legal version also automatically formats legal citations.
Until the end of September, there will be special upgrade pricing to encourage you to make the very worthy upgrade to version 12. Call Affinity's Speech Specialist, Phil Metcalf
, at (540) 767-7633
| Microsoft Word 2010 Tip of the Month - Document Search
You've always been able to search your Word documents for words or phrases. You simply opened the Search menu, typed what you were looking for, and Word would present it to you - one instance at a time.
Word 2010 added a new search function (the "new Find") to the Navigation Pane and made the Search function more like what you would find in an on-line search engine such as with Google. Pressing CTRL+f , now opens the Navigation Pane to the left of your document and provides a search box. This sidebar shows all instances of the word or phrase in your document. The view includes a short excerpt showing both the search term and the surrounding text. This provides you with the context of how the word or phrase fits into the document. Clicking on one of the results moves the cursor to that location in the document.
Read the complete Word Tip of the Month.
For more great Word tips, attend one of our Word AU classes with Barron K. Henley, Esq. Word Basics is September 11, Word Introduction to Styles is September 18, and Word Share and Compare is September 25.
|Review: A Sight for Sore Eyes - Big Launcher for Android|
As much as I love my iPad 2 as a law practice tool and my iPod Touch for music and podcasts, I still prefer an Android phone to an iPhone. Part of the reason is the larger screen size available in leading Android phones (I have a Motorola Razr Maxx with a 4.3 inch screen) while the iPhone has been at 3.5 inches since it was introduced several years ago. That is about the change, of course, with the iPhone 2012 set to be announced this month with a 4 inch screen (if predictions are correct).
Still, even with a larger screen on my Android phone, the icons and text can still be hard for these 56 year old eyes to read. Yes, I can boost the font size in the phone's system settings, and many apps have their own font settings. But that can be cumbersome and it only helps for some functions. The app icons on the home screens are still a bit small. Changing icon size can be a cumbersome process that involves rooting
Read the blog post about Big Launcher
Then I was fortunate enough to find Big Launcher
, an add-in home screen app launcher that is perfect for old eyes like mine. For $4.99 from the Google Play
app store, you get this entirely new take on an Android launcher. There is also a feature-restricted free trial
| Dropbox Adds Two-Factor Authentication for Improved Cloud Security |
If you have multiple devices such as more than one PC or a smart phone or tablet, it is hard to avoid using a cloud-based file syncing service to keep your data and documents up to date on each device you use in your law practice. Dropbox
is the most popular of these services and, for that reason, more mobile apps for your iPad, iPhone, or Android device integrate directly with Dropbox than with any other service.
To date, no state bar association or the ABA has declared that there is an ethical prohibition against using third-party cloud-based services to sync or store client or law firm documents and data. Data stored in the Cloud is usually more secure than data stored on your local office network - provided the lawyer takes reason care to understand how Cloud services work and takes reasonable steps to assure that the confidentiality of firm and client data is protected. The first reasonable step is always to create and use strong passwords
and avoid using the same password for multiples sites or services.
However, strong passwords alone are not always enough. Dropbox now allows you to implement one of the best security features available to protect your data - two factor authentication. Read the complete article on Dropbox two-factor authentication
| Windows XP/Vista/7 Tip of the Month - Tabs for Windows Explorer |
One of the biggest improvements in web browser usability has been the addition of tabbed browsing. All major browsers (Internet Explorer, Firefox, Chrome, Opera) now include the ability to open new tabs within the browser window so you can visit multiple web sites simultaneously.
We also "browse" the file structure on our Windows computers using a built-in Windows program called, not surprisingly, Windows Explorer. What has been missing from Windows Explorer is the type of tabbed browsing available in our web browsers. There is now a free add-in to Windows Explorer called Clover that solves that problem. Read the complete Windows Tip of the Month
| 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.
Affinity and the ALA
| Affinity Attending Upcoming ALA Regional Conferences|
Affnity Consulting Group will attend and have a booth in the exhibit hall at three upcoming ALA Regional Conferences. Region 3 meets in Minneapolis on September 13-15. Region 2 meets in Atlanta September 27-29. Region 1 meets in Mashantucket, CT, October 18-20.
Affinity is proud to be an ALA VIP Partner. ALA members qualify for 25% off all Affinity University courses (live and on-demand).
|Affinity University Live Webinars Qualify for ALA CLM Credit
Whether you are in the process of applying or re-certifying to become a Certified Legal Manager (CLM), Affinity University Live Webinars are a great way to get relevant training on the software you use every day. And the best part is - you get CLM credit.
New Applicants may use any Live Webinar towards their Information Technology education requirement, and CLMs going through recertification can use any Live Webinar towards their Operations Management education requirement.
And remember, ALA members receive a 25% discount on al AU courses. Contact Jennifer M. Ramovs, Esq., our Director of Education, to find out how.
|Green Corner - Biking to Work is Easier on a Fixie|
We love technology and all it can do to improve law firm efficiency and profitability. One of the most efficient devices ever invented is actually 19th century technology - but amazing nonetheless. It is the bicycle. Up to 99% of the energy delivered by the rider into the pedals is transmitted to the wheels. However, the use of gearing mechanisms may reduce this by 10-15%. More on that below.
Nothing could be "greener" than leaving the car in the driveway and biking to the office. With just a little training, commutes of 10 miles or less are easy and longer commutes are certainly possible. Finding a bike-friendly route is simple now that Google announced that its excellent turn-by-turn navigation system includes bike routes
So what kind of bike should you ride to work?