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Important Feature Missing From All Practice Management Software; Review of Time Matters AMP; Is It Now Safe to Use a Mac in Law Practice?

By TechnoLawyer | Friday, June 22, 2018

Today's issue of TL Serendipity contains these articles:

Neil Squillante, An Important Feature Missing From All Practice Management Software

Michael Caccavo, Review of Time Matters AMP

Harry Steinmetz, PCs Don't Have an Advantage Over Macs Anymore in Law Practice

Courtney Schael, Macs Are Better Than Windows PC in Desktop Search

Don't miss this issue — or any future issues.

How to Receive TL Serendipity
Our most serendipitous offering (hence its name), TL Serendipity consists of contributions by TechnoLawyer members who have important information to share. You'll no doubt enjoy it because of its mix of interesting topics and genuinely useful knowledge, including brutally honest product reviews and informative how-tos. The TL Serendipity newsletter is free so don't miss the next issue. Please subscribe now.

Topics: Coming Attractions | Consultants/Services/Training | Document Management | Networking/Operating Systems | Practice Management/Calendars | TL Serendipity

Replace Internal Email With NetDocuments' New ndThread Messaging and Collaboration Service

By TechnoLawyer | Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Today's issue of TL NewsWire covers a corporate messaging service that automatically saves discussions and shared documents to NetDocuments (see article below). In addition, you'll find links to the previous 11 TL NewsWire features, including our coverage of a Microsoft Word add-in that scores your briefs and offers a spellchecker-like tool which suggests corrections and stylistic improvements, cloud software for paperless deposition exhibits that gives you precise control over what the deponent sees and which can generate a hyperlinked report of all marked exhibits, and much more. Don't miss the next issue.

Email makes a lot of sense for communicating with clients thanks to its interoperability across organizations. But internal email is a different story. The sheer volume can bury important client messages and prevent them from being filed or shared. Since you're all in the same organization, corporate messaging offers a better alternative — except that it usually creates another location to manage.

NetDocuments ndThread … in One Sentence

Just launched, NetDocuments' ndThread is a secure messaging service embedded within NetDocuments' cloud platform with apps for Windows, Mac, Web, iOS, and Android.

The Killer Feature

ndThread builds on the recent launch of ndMail (for storing email and attachments) to ensure that you'll find all information related to a matter in one location in NetDocuments. This also guarantees a unified platform for communication and collaboration while incorporating NetDocuments global search functionality.

ndThread came to NetDocuments via its acquisition of ThreadKM late last year. Dan Hauck, former CEO of ThreadKM and current VP of Product and User Experience at NetDocuments, spearheaded the project to incorporate ndThread into the NetDocuments platform for matter and topic-based messaging.

ndThread offers a zero-configuration experience on several fronts. For example, there's no initial setup because everyone in your firm can use their NetDocuments identity to login and use ndThread. Furthermore, there's no concern about threaded discussions becoming information silos because ndThread automatically saves and categorizes conversations in the correct matter within NetDocuments' matter, client, or topic-based workspaces.

"NetDocuments' ability to quickly incorporate the ThreadKM technology into its global cloud service speaks to its incredible power and efficiency," says Hauck. "The same encryption, security, compliance, indexing, and search functionality of NetDocuments' robust service now extends to all aspects of ndThread, reducing the need for law firms to rely on outside technologies to quickly and effectively communicate."

Other Notable Features

ndThread offers two ways to communicate with colleagues — direct messages and workspace discussions. Direct messages work like text messages except that you don't need to maintain an address book. Workspaces in ndThread mirror workspaces in NetDocuments and facilitate a conversation among members of a client team, practice group, committee, etc. Notification icons inform you of unread messages (you can also receive email or push notifications).

Workspaces can contain multiple private or open "threads" alongside other matter-related documents and email (e.g., a partners-only discussion). When a new team member joins a workspace, they gain access to all past discussions and documents, helping them get up to speed.

Most of the time, you'll reference documents already stored in NetDocuments. If you add a new document from elsewhere, ndThread asks you to fill out a profile and saves it into the same workspace in NetDocuments. Once a document resides in ndThread, you can use annotation tools to collaborate on it. These annotations reside in a nondestructive layer on top of the document. Collaborating in this fashion brings everyone to the same file, eliminating the drudgery of merging competing redlines or commentary sent in email messages or attachments.

What Else Should You Know?

"We started looking at ThreadKM as an innovative alternative to traditional email communication before the NetDocuments acquisition," says David Pray, Chief Transformation Officer at Bailey & Glasser LLP. "Now having ndThread as part of the NetDocuments platform presents a win-win scenario. We look forward to immediately leveraging ndThread as part of our NetDocuments platform investment." Learn more about ndThread.

How to Receive TL NewsWire
So many products, so little time. In each issue of TL NewsWire, you'll learn about five new products for the legal profession. Pressed for time? The newsletter's innovative articles enable lawyers and law office administrators to quickly understand the function of a product, and zero in on its most important features. The TL NewsWire newsletter is free so don't miss the next issue. Please subscribe now.

Topics: Collaboration/Knowledge Management | Document Management | TL NewsWire

Comparative Review of NetDocuments v. Worldox Plus 54 More Must-Reads

By TechnoLawyer | Monday, May 14, 2018

Coming today to BlawgWorld: Our editorial team has selected the 55 best legal technology articles, podcasts, and videos from the past week. Below you'll find a sampling from today's issue, including our BlawgWorld Pick of the Week. BlawgWorld is free so don't miss the next issue — sign up now.

Congratulations to John Heckman of Does It Compute? on winning our BlawgWorld Pick of the Week award: NetDocs vs. Worldox

The Best Hosted Email Providers of 2018

Technology Can Be Your Ticket to a Profitable, Well-Balanced Law Practice (Or Not)

Do Legal Tech Companies Lack Coherent Market Strategies?

20 Great iPhone Apps You Didn't Know Existed

Google Duplex: An AI System for Accomplishing Real-World Tasks Over the Phone

The Surprising Repercussions of Making AI Assistants Sound Human

How to Receive BlawgWorld
Our newsletters provide the most comprehensive coverage of both legal technology and mainstream technology of interest to the legal profession. But not the only coverage. BlawgWorld enables you to stay on top of all the noteworthy legal and mainstream technology articles (and podcasts and videos) published elsewhere without having to hire a research assistant. Even when you're busy, you won't want to miss each issue's Pick of the Week. Subscribe now for free.

Topics: BlawgWorld Newsletter | Coming Attractions | Document Management | Laptops/Smartphones/Tablets

One-Click Email Filing in Outlook via Artificial Intelligence

By TechnoLawyer | Thursday, March 15, 2018

Today's issue of TL NewsWire covers a Microsoft Outlook add-in that predicts where to file your email and even lets you know when a colleague has beat you to it and already filed the same message (see article below). In addition, you'll find links to the previous 11 TL NewsWire features, including our coverage of a cloud practice management system that has added financial and trust accounting to complement its billing features, obviating third-party software such as QuickBooks, an online video tutorial service to help lawyers prepare clients for depositions, mediations, and trials, and much more. Don't miss the next issue.

Over the years, document management systems have adapted to include email. The companies behind these products have developed all sorts of tools for saving email messages and attachments so that everyone working on a matter can access them. However, solutions to date require too much manual labor, and don't take into account multiple recipients of the same message to prevent duplicates.

ndMail … in One Sentence

Recently launched, NetDocuments' ndMail is a Microsoft Outlook add-in that uses artificial intelligence to make saving client-related email in the correct location faster and more accurate.

The Killer Feature

NetDocuments pioneered cloud document management nearly 20 years ago. In recent years, the company modernized NetDocuments to pave the way for companion products like ndMail.

Once installed, ndMail monitors your inbox to identify where in NetDocuments you likely want to file each new message. Select a message to view these recommended locations. Check a box if you agree with a prediction and the message is stored in that NetDocuments folder, inheriting the corresponding client, matter, and other associated metadata. You can file email in multiple folders. If you're unsure about a recommendation, right-click to open that location in NetDocuments for more context.

ndMail uses the sender, recipients, subject line, attachments, etc. to make its predictions. A Signal Strength Indicator to the left of each recommendation indicates the confidence level of ndMail's Predictive Email Filing technology. If none of the recommendations is a good fit, you can search or browse NetDocuments to find the correct folder, or create a new folder (e.g., new matter). ndMail learns from your behavior to improve its future recommendations.

"ndMail is unlike other email management solutions," says NetDocuments Sr. Product Manager of ndMail Bradlee Duncan. "It comes pre-loaded with accurate filing predictions, leveraging AI technology based on existing matter content and filing behaviors. This eliminates the need for complex deployment or pre-trained models to generate its predictions. The value is immediate in time saved, helping new employees get up to speed, and preventing errors."

Other Notable Features

NetDocuments realizes you're part of a law firm, and that colleagues often receive the same email messages. Therefore, ndMail includes a Global Filing Indicator in the form of a NetDocuments column in Outlook. If a colleague has already filed a message, the Global Filing Indicator in this column lets you know before you open the message. This prevents the storage of duplicate email messages in the same NetDocuments folder.

When composing an email message, ndMail works similarly, predicting where you likely want to file the message after sending it. If a recipient works in your law firm, they will see the Global Filing Indicator in Outlook to let them know you have already filed the message in NetDocuments.

If you communicate frequently on one matter, you can use ndMail's Folder Mapping as an alternative way to save messages in NetDocuments. Folder Mapping enables you to list NetDocuments folders within Outlook's navigation panel. Drag and drop multiple messages into a mapped folder to store them in NetDocuments.

What Else Should You Know?

You can deploy ndMail centrally. Some firms create a rule in Microsoft Exchange to remove filed messages from user inboxes after a specified period of time. Alternatively, you can give users the ability to keep or delete email in Outlook after filing it in NetDocuments. Learn more about ndMail.

How to Receive TL NewsWire
So many products, so little time. In each issue of TL NewsWire, you'll learn about five new products for the legal profession. Pressed for time? The newsletter's innovative articles enable lawyers and law office administrators to quickly understand the function of a product, and zero in on its most important features. The TL NewsWire newsletter is free so don't miss the next issue. Please subscribe now.

Topics: Document Management | Email/Messaging/Telephony | TL NewsWire

Pros and Cons of Cloud Document Management Plus 50 More Must-Reads

By TechnoLawyer | Monday, February 12, 2018

Coming today to BlawgWorld: Our editorial team has selected the 51 best legal technology articles, podcasts, and videos from the past week. Below you'll find a sampling from today's issue, including our BlawgWorld Pick of the Week. BlawgWorld is free so don't miss the next issue — sign up now.

Congratulations to John Heckman of Does It Compute? on winning our BlawgWorld Pick of the Week award: "Modern" Document Management — What's That?

How to Opt Out of Targeted Ads Around the Web

Knowledge Management Priorities in Large Law Firms: 2018 Survey

Why Paper Jams Persist

Review: HomePod (With Audio Measurements)

Review: HomePod (Video)

Review: HomePod (TechCrunch)

ALM Exec Who Oversaw #Legalweek18 Is Out Just Days After Event

The Last Scan

How to Receive BlawgWorld
Our newsletters provide the most comprehensive coverage of both legal technology and mainstream technology of interest to the legal profession. But not the only coverage. BlawgWorld enables you to stay on top of all the noteworthy legal and mainstream technology articles (and podcasts and videos) published elsewhere without having to hire a research assistant. Even when you're busy, you won't want to miss each issue's Pick of the Week. Subscribe now for free.

Topics: BlawgWorld Newsletter | Coming Attractions | Document Management | Laptops/Smartphones/Tablets

Micro-Symposium on the Most Helpful Products of 2017 Plus Your Foolproof 2018 Law Firm Marketing Plan

By TechnoLawyer | Thursday, December 21, 2017

Coming today to SmallLaw: What will happen in 2018? No one knows, which means all those prediction articles circulating this time of year are fan fiction. In typical SmallLaw style, this last issue of 2017 eschews the fanciful for the practical -- a Micro-Symposium in which SmallLaw contributors tell you about the most helpful technology products they started using in 2017. You'll find nine recommended products in all that will improve your productivity in 2018. Also, don't miss the SmallLaw Pick of the Week for your foolproof 2018 law firm marketing plan.

How to Receive SmallLaw
Small firm, big dreams. Written by practicing lawyers who manage successful small firms and legal technology and practice management experts who have achieved rock star status, SmallLaw provides practical advice on management, marketing, and technology issues in small law firms, as well as comprehensive legal product reviews with accompanying TechnoScore ratings. SmallLaw also ensures that you won't miss anything published elsewhere by linking to helpful articles (and podcasts and videos) about solo practices and small law firms. The SmallLaw newsletter is free so don't miss the next issue. Please subscribe now.

Topics: Coming Attractions | Document Management | Email/Messaging/Telephony | Law Firm Marketing/Publications/Web Sites | Law Office Management | Privacy/Security | SmallLaw | Transactional Practice Areas

The Inside Story of How a Paperless Law Firm Digitized 23 Years of Closed Files

By TechnoLawyer | Friday, October 13, 2017

Coming today to SmallLaw: Immigration law firm Siskind Susser decided to go paperless all the way back to its founding in 1994. Easier said than done as closed files comprised 823 boxes of paper. In this issue of SmallLaw, the firm's innovation director Josh Waddell who spearheaded the project takes you inside each decision, including whether to outsource, the biggest snag, integrity and proofreading procedures, what to do with the paper after digitization, rules for new cases, and more. Also, don't miss the SmallLaw Pick of the Week for advice on interviewing job candidates.

How to Receive SmallLaw
Small firm, big dreams. Written by practicing lawyers who manage successful small firms and legal technology and practice management experts who have achieved rock star status, SmallLaw provides practical advice on management, marketing, and technology issues in small law firms, as well as comprehensive legal product reviews with accompanying TechnoScore ratings. SmallLaw also ensures that you won't miss anything published elsewhere by linking to helpful articles (and podcasts and videos) about solo practices and small law firms. The SmallLaw newsletter is free so don't miss the next issue. Please subscribe now.

Topics: Coming Attractions | Copiers/Scanners/Printers | Document Management | SmallLaw

Cloud Document Management That Won't Change the Way You Work

By TechnoLawyer | Thursday, August 31, 2017

Today's issue of TL NewsWire covers a cloud practice management system with a new document management component that works locally on PCs and Macs like a network drive (see article below). In addition, you'll find links to the previous 11 TL NewsWire features, including our coverage of a new payment processor with a flat fee per transaction that deposits funds overnight, a Microsoft Word add-in for drafting litigation and transactional documents with a new document assembly engine, forms library, and machine-learning tools, and much more. Don't miss the next issue.

Cloud practice management has many virtues but concerns about document management prevent some law firms from taking the leap. These firms understandably don't want to give up their network drives and folder hierarchies, manually upload documents, or change the way they work.

Centerbase … in One Sentence

Centerbase is a cloud practice management system that now offers document management which functions like a local network drive.

The Killer Feature

CEO John Forbes tells me I'm the first person outside of the company and a few early adopters to see Centerbase's new document management technology. A product CEO who spent years as a reseller, Forbes has a Steve Jobs-like enthusiasm.

Documents in Centerbase function on your PC or Mac like a network drive even though they actually reside on secure servers in the cloud. Centerbase uses WebDAV, a standard file protocol for Internet file sharing.

During initial setup, Centerbase's support team uploads your entire document library, and can help you map document folders to the correct clients and matters in Centerbase. Forbes tells me about a firm that imported 3.6 million files.

"After setup, you use your files and folders like you always have in Windows Explorer or Mac Finder," says Forbes. Any changes to documents are automatically reflected in Centerbase and vice versa. Forbes describes this as a "1:1 correlation." An optional add-on makes Centerbase files and folders available offline with changes automatically synced when you're back online. For new matters, Centerbase can automatically generate a set of folders.

"Centerbase has made transitioning to a cloud product for document management seamless," said Tait Johnson, paralegal at Sharpe & Associates, PLLC. "We no longer have to maintain our own file server, and we can now access our documents from anywhere."

Other Notable Features

You can view documents in Centerbase from multiple locations. The Documents File Explorer gives you access to all mapped documents. Navigate your folder hierarchies or run a search. Alternatively, you can access relevant documents in other areas of Centerbase such as in Matters, Contacts, and Billing. For example, each matter contains a Documents tab listing all related files.

Centerbase's Microsoft Word integration and Workflows (document assembly combined with project management) bring further automation. Workflows take you from Centerbase to Word to automatically generate a document that gets saved to the correct matter when finished.

At your option, you can create document profiles to track type of document and other metadata to improve search results. Centerbase enables you to keep every version of a document in case you need to revert. You can restrict access to documents. Also, documents lock when colleagues work in them. If you need more robust document management, Centerbase integrates with NetDocuments.

What Else Should You Know?

Centerbase launched several additional features since our initial report. Matters Templates enable you to create customized layouts for each of your practice areas with all the requisite data fields. Thus, a bankruptcy matter can track creditors, while an accident matter can track medical records and police reports. The new Report Builder offers the ability to create custom reports. Forbes showed me a report that lists matters comprising 80% of a firm's business. Finally, Centerbase's iPhone app now includes mobile time entries for billing on the go. Centerbase costs $52 per user per month. Learn more about Centerbase.

How to Receive TL NewsWire
So many products, so little time. In each issue of TL NewsWire, you'll learn about five new products for the legal profession. Pressed for time? The newsletter's innovative articles enable lawyers and law office administrators to quickly understand the function of a product, and zero in on its most important features. The TL NewsWire newsletter is free so don't miss the next issue. Please subscribe now.

Topics: Document Management | Online/Cloud | Practice Management/Calendars | TL NewsWire

10.5-Inch iPad Pro in a Real Estate Practice; Reviews of Amicus Online, Surface Pro

By TechnoLawyer | Thursday, August 17, 2017

Today's issue of TL Serendipity contains these articles:

Wesley Y. S. Chang, How I Use My 10.5-Inch iPad Pro in a Real Estate Practice

Dwight Sowerby, Review of Amicus Online

Christian Onsager, Review of Surface Pro 3 (Sleek Beast But Getting Old)

Don't miss this issue — or any future issues.

How to Receive TL Serendipity
Our most serendipitous offering (hence its name), TL Serendipity consists of contributions by TechnoLawyer members who have important information to share. You'll no doubt enjoy it because of its mix of interesting topics and genuinely useful knowledge, including brutally honest product reviews and informative how-tos. The TL Serendipity newsletter is free so don't miss the next issue. Please subscribe now.

Topics: Accounting/Billing/Time Capture | Business Productivity/Word Processing | Coming Attractions | Document Management | Laptops/Smartphones/Tablets | Practice Management/Calendars | TL Serendipity | Utilities

Synergy Matters Automates the Capture of Client-Related Documents and Email

By TechnoLawyer | Thursday, July 27, 2017

Today's issue of TL NewsWire covers document and email manegement software that integrates with Microsoft Office and scanners to consolidate all client-related data in one location (see article below). In addition, you'll find links to the previous 11 TL NewsWire features, including our coverage of ediscovery software for quickly and inexpensively collecting and reviewing documents and email in small cases, a cloud practice management app with desktop-class features and per-case rather than per-user pricing, and much more. Don't miss the next issue.

Even the most detail-oriented lawyers find it challenging to keep all the information associated with a matter in one convenient location. You shouldn't have to develop elaborate systems to achieve this. Instead, software should do this work for you.

Synergy Matters 3.0 … in One Sentence

Launching this week, Legal Matters Software's Synergy Matters 3.0 is a document and email management system that automates the consolidation of all client-related data.

The Killer Feature

You can begin using Synergy Matters immediately after importing your client and matter information from your accounting software. As users work on matters, Synergy Matters prompts them to import their existing documents. The Outlook add-in works similarly, enabling you to import email and attachments. Legal Matters Software President John Ryan tells me that most law firms get up and running in less than a day, often just two hours.

Once you import a matter's documents and email, you can grant access rights to matters and organize the information within matters using nested folders as you see fit. From this point forward, a number of tools keep all new documents and email within Synergy Matters. Automatic email capture occurs whether you initiate messages from within a matter in Synergy Matters or from within Outlook. In the latter scenario, the Outlook add-in enables you to attach documents from Synergy Matters and save your message in the corresponding matter. A similar Microsoft Word add-in captures all new client-related documents.

Integration with scanners helps you go paperless. Built-in OCR makes these scanned PDF files searchable. Synergy Matters also captures incoming and outgoing faxes.

"The intuitive nature of Synergy Matters makes training new staff easy, and having the same interface for bringing in emails, scans, faxes and downloaded research means the documents all end up in the correct place," says Troy Berg, Manager, Information Technology at Doak Shirreff.

Other Notable Features

Synergy Matters also offers new collaboration tools. When you use the For Review tool to send a document to a colleague, Synergy Matters marks the document as out for review and notifies your colleague. If your colleague makes changes, Synergy Matters creates a new version. Click the History button for a complete audit trail of who worked on the document and when. You can revert to any prior version as well as create a new version with its own history.

"Synergy Matters 3.0 is the result of lawyers working closely with us to enhance their workflows," says Ryan. "In particular, the For Review process offers foolproof internal collaboration with an audit trail."

Synergy Matters' dashboard lists your active cases within the past 30 days. The search bar enables you to find any case. Within matters, the new Chronological View lists all the files in reverse chronological order regardless of their location within a folder.

What Else Should You Know?

Other features of Synergy Matters include Combine as PDF to merge selected documents into a single PDF file, automatic time capture of your activity for billing or proof of work when splitting fees, ethical walls, a notes tickler within each matter, and cost recovery. Synergy Matters runs on Windows PCs. Pricing starts at $125 per month for up to five users. Learn more about Synergy Matters 3.0.

How to Receive TL NewsWire
So many products, so little time. In each issue of TL NewsWire, you'll learn about five new products for the legal profession. Pressed for time? The newsletter's innovative articles enable lawyers and law office administrators to quickly understand the function of a product, and zero in on its most important features. The TL NewsWire newsletter is free so don't miss the next issue. Please subscribe now.

Topics: Document Management | TL NewsWire
 
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