Rocket Matter https://www.rocketmatter.com Making the Lives of Lawyers a Whole Lot Easier Mon, 24 Apr 2017 15:57:42 +0000 en-US hourly 1 77784083 Top Five Ways to Set Up Your Law Firm’s Culture for Success https://www.rocketmatter.com/op-ed/top-five-ways-to-set-up-your-law-firms-culture-for-success/ https://www.rocketmatter.com/op-ed/top-five-ways-to-set-up-your-law-firms-culture-for-success/#respond Mon, 24 Apr 2017 15:57:42 +0000 https://www.rocketmatter.com/?p=23748 Ask a general manager of a sports franchise about building a culture and his or her eyes may light up before declaring that culture is the key to winning. Ask the principal in a small to mid-sized law firm the same question, and you may receive a blank stare. However, culture at a law firm—or […]

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law firm culture

Ask a general manager of a sports franchise about building a culture and his or her eyes may light up before declaring that culture is the key to winning. Ask the principal in a small to mid-sized law firm the same question, and you may receive a blank stare.

However, culture at a law firm—or at any business for that matter—is just as important as it is on a sports team. Whatever your culture becomes, it will become a critical component of productivity, employee satisfaction, and success (or lack thereof.)

So how do you build a successful culture in your law firm? Here are some suggestions for doing just that:

Explain Why They Should Care.
Why should your associates or any employee really care about the law firm’s success? Until you can answer this question, you can’t start building your law firm’s successful culture.

In other words, you need to discover your firm’s driving force. Find it and you will then have the foundation for why your employees should care about the work they do at the law firm. It is bigger than you. It is bigger than them. It is bigger than clichés or the bottom line. It is genuine belief in the good you do for others.

How do you determine this driving force? Think about your clients and what they mean to society as a whole. For instance, I am the sole principal and managing attorney at a law firm in Orange County, California. Family law is all we do. Our purpose is to provide intelligent representation to help husbands, wives, fathers, and mothers through some of the most difficult times in their lives. We are in this business for our clients, and our law firm’s culture is built around the sustainable premise that if you do great work for good people, the financial rewards will take care of themselves.

More specifically, one aspect of our practice is child custody cases. Of course, there’s nothing more important in life than our children and ensuring that they are raised in loving, safe, non-violent environments. This fact is the driving force in our child custody work.

Lead by Example.
If you expect your employees to buy into particular culture modeled after the principles you espouse, you’ve got to be a good role model.  Leading by example is a constant work-in-progress. You will fail at it more than once but as long as you learn from those failures and become a better leader as a result, your employees will see that you care. When they see you care, they will care in return.

Show Your Employees Why They are Important.
Every employee at your firm should know how important they are to the greater good.  The best way to do this is to share the law firm’s goals so they can work toward fulfilling them. For example, at my firm the receptionist who answers phones always speaks to potential clients with kindness and respect because she understands that that is an important part of our firm’s culture. The managing associate who prevails in court treats his opponent with respect because she knows her behavior will impact how that person will think of and speak of the firm. Though the receptionist and managing associate have vastly different duties, both have been bought into the law firm’s culture.

However, don’t just tell employees how things must be done. Instead, collaborate with them about why things should be done that way and obtain their input. That way they will feel like a greater part of the team.

Reward Those Who Excel.
Rewarding employees who exemplify your firm’s culture is a component of the lead-by-example mantra. When you reward these employees, their colleagues who wish to receive the same rewards will have role models to follow besides you. It doesn’t matter if the employees think exactly the same way as you do. Differences have value, and it helps to have various examples of how to promote the firm’s culture.

Never Lose Focus.
It’s easy to start building a culture but not finish because of distractions or poor decisions. One way to keep that focus is to recognize potential barriers ahead of time and then set policies in place to keep those barriers from getting in the way of culture building.

In our law firm, there are three principles that keep us focused and undistracted.

  1. We are selective about our clients and only represent good people with the right intentions. Few things kill culture faster than a law firm that is willing to take on any case or any cause, regardless of merit, to boost the bottom line.
  2. We don’t let ourselves become emotionally invested. By doing this, we help our clients make better decisions.
  3. We kill other lawyers with kindness. Though we do not always succeed in this regard, we work hard to maintain a positive relationship with opposing counsels and opposing parties.

Of course, once you establish a culture of success, it’s critical to constantly improve upon it and nurture it. How often have you seen a business or championship sports teams fall apart after achieving success? Greed, distrust, poor planning, or a weak foundation can lead to such failure. However, when a business or team continues to win and maintains their success, they usually do so because they sustained their culture throughout time. In other words, always make your company’s culture the cornerstone of everything you do.

Robert Farzad is the president of Farzad Family Law, APC  based in Orange County, California. He has been licensed attorney in California since  1996 and helped grow his multi-attorney and multi-office firm from the ground up.

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[Free Webinar] Capturing and Converting Phone Leads with Rocket Matter and Ruby https://www.rocketmatter.com/technology/free-webinar-converting-phone-leads/ https://www.rocketmatter.com/technology/free-webinar-converting-phone-leads/#respond Fri, 21 Apr 2017 18:41:51 +0000 https://www.rocketmatter.com/?p=23787   With all the ways we have to communicate today, it may surprise you to learn that customers still prefer to use the phone to interact with businesses. In fact, companies of all sizes are seeing an explosion of inbound calls. Why? One big reason is click-to-call, which is the ability to dial a business […]

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Capture and convert phone leads with Rocket Matter and Ruby

 

With all the ways we have to communicate today, it may surprise you to learn that customers still prefer to use the phone to interact with businesses. In fact, companies of all sizes are seeing an explosion of inbound calls. Why? One big reason is click-to-call, which is the ability to dial a business directly from a mobile search. In fact, click-to-call is booming, and its popularity isn’t expected to fade any time soon: Experts predict that people will make around 162 billion calls to businesses from smartphones in 2019.

Rocket Matter and Ruby® Receptionists are teaming up for a webinar designed to help you capitalize on this inbound call renaissance and turn your phone into a productive marketing channel and money-maker. As a webinar attendee, you’ll:

  • Learn how to take advantage of click-to-call technology on both your website and Google listing.
  • Learn how to address the many needs of mobile callers and improve their experiences from start to finish.
  • Explore the new integration between Rocket Matter’s all-in-one legal practice management platform and Ruby’s live virtual receptionist service.
  • Learn how Rocket Matter and Ruby work together to help you streamline workflow, build trust with current and potential clients, grow your practice, and more.

Register for FREE! Join us Wednesday, April 26th at 12PM ET!

Presenters:

Diana Stepleton has worn many hats at Ruby since 2009, and she now manages and supports their partnership program. With expertise in both business and the telecom industry, Diana helps marry the ins and outs of Ruby’s service with the unique needs of its customer base. Prior to Ruby, Diana worked at AT&T/Lucent and also owned a successful market research company that earned a spot on the Inc. 500 list for three consecutive years.

Nefra MacDonald is the  Business Development and Strategic Partnership Coordinator at Rocket Matter. After working in various capacities at law firms, corporations, and non-profits, she decided to use her experience to help address the pain points that practicing lawyers feel every day. Nefra currently co-chairs Rocket Matter’s Product Advisory Committee, which serves as a source of targeted feedback for the company’s product improvement strategy.

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Fujitsu ScanSnap Introduces Smartphone Scanning Directly to Rocket Matter https://www.rocketmatter.com/technology/fujitsu-scansnap-introduces-smartphone-scanning-directly-to-rocket-matter/ https://www.rocketmatter.com/technology/fujitsu-scansnap-introduces-smartphone-scanning-directly-to-rocket-matter/#respond Fri, 21 Apr 2017 14:54:38 +0000 https://www.rocketmatter.com/?p=23827   Fujitsu, king of the personal desktop scanners, introduced additional capabilities to their elite line of imaging products, including the ability to upload pictures of documents taken with a smartphone into the ScanSnap Cloud. This new functionality allows attorneys to take a photo of a document with their iPhone, which will then automatically appear in […]

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Fujitsu ScanSnap Rocket Matter Mobile

 

Fujitsu, king of the personal desktop scanners, introduced additional capabilities to their elite line of imaging products, including the ability to upload pictures of documents taken with a smartphone into the ScanSnap Cloud. This new functionality allows attorneys to take a photo of a document with their iPhone, which will then automatically appear in Rocket Matter.

 

If you haven’t used a smartphone as a makeshift scanner, you’re missing out on some really useful functionality. The new iOS and Android apps function similarly to smartphone document programs like TurboScan and Evernote’s Scannable. The ScanSnap Cloud, in turn, forwards the documents to the users’ favorite document storage applications such as Dropbox, Evernote, Google Drive, or Rocket Matter (which, as of this writing, is the only legal practice management software that directly integrates with the ScanSnap Cloud).

 

In addition to providing the photo/scanning capability, you have full ability to configure the ScanSnap cloud. The apps have the full functionality of the ScanSnap Cloud desktop application.

In November of last year, Rocket Matter announced compatibility with Fujitsu’s line of iX ScanSnap machines. The integration allows attorneys to instantly scan receipts, invoices, business cards, and various sized documents (either single or double-sided.) they will automatically appear in Rocket Matter.

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Legal Freedom Fighter Series: Emily Benfer https://www.rocketmatter.com/general/legal-freedom-fighter-series-emily-benfer/ https://www.rocketmatter.com/general/legal-freedom-fighter-series-emily-benfer/#respond Thu, 20 Apr 2017 12:42:15 +0000 https://www.rocketmatter.com/?p=23797     We’ve seen it repeatedly throughout our history: When people’s rights are threatened, it’s the lawyers who step up to to the plate. They fight hate, they defend our Constitution, and they give a voice to people who can’t speak for themselves. More than ever before, we need lawyers to help ensure that everyone’s rights are protected. Thousands […]

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Freedom Fighters

 

We’ve seen it repeatedly throughout our history: When people’s rights are threatened, it’s the lawyers who step up to to the plate. They fight hate, they defend our Constitution, and they give a voice to people who can’t speak for themselves. More than ever before, we need lawyers to help ensure that everyone’s rights are protected. Thousands of lawyers across the country are doing this. However, some are true Freedom Fighters and they deserve special recognition. That’s why each month, we will feature a lawyer who is really making a difference.

Emily BenferToday, we are proud to feature Emily Benfer, founding Director of the Health Justice Project

Emily Benfer is a clinical professor of law at Loyola University Chicago School of Law and Stritch School of Medicine and the founding Director of the Health Justice Project, a medical-legal partnership with Erie Family Health Center.

Emily has dedicated her career to serving the public interest. She has engaged in direct representation, class action litigation, grassroots organizing, and federal and state policy reform in multiple areas of public interest law. Such areas include homelessness, special education, housing, disability and public benefits at civil legal aid and non-profit organizations. In practice, she was a civil legal aid attorney at nonprofit legal organizations, as well as a legislative lawyer in the successful campaign to pass the ADA Amendments Act. She also represented Workplace Flexibility 2010 in legislative advocacy involving low-wage workers and family and medical leave.

In recognition of her achievements and commitment to social justice, Emily has received numerous commendations. For instance, she was named one of Chicago’s “40 Promising Attorneys Under 40” by the National Law Journal and has received the American Bar Association Judy M. Weightman Memorial Public Interest Award. Emily’s full bio is available at www.emilybenfer.com and you can follow her on Twitter @e_catalyst.

Here’s the interview:

What inspired you to become a lawyer in the first place?
During my service as a Peace Corps volunteer in Zimbabwe, Belize, and Thailand, I lived in remote villages and was welcomed into the community like a family member. Even before I understood the language or the culture, I recognized unique human spirits and the universal experiences we shared in common. At the same time, I bore witness to health inequity, slavery, domestic violence, human trafficking, and abject poverty.

In that setting, I was deeply affected by three truths: (1) All people share a common humanity. (2) My neighbors and countless individuals like them were the victims of grave human rights violations. (3) The most powerful ally in the quest for social justice is the law. So the only possible result: I adopted Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s mutuality pact and embraced the quest for social justice: “We are tied together in a single garment of destiny, caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, and whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly. For some strange reason I can never be what I ought to be until you are what you ought to be. You can never be what you ought to be until I am what I ought to be…”

What was your most memorable case?
My most memorable case is a disability discrimination claim on behalf of children who were lead poisoned in federally assisted housing and then denied a reasonable accommodation under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

When my client, Lanice Walker, was awarded a housing subsidy, little did she know that a few months after moving into the apartment the Chicago Housing Authority (CHA) had approved, every member of her family would develop lead poisoning. When Ms. Walker learned of her children’s rising blood lead levels, she immediately contacted the CHA and asked for permission to move to protect her children from additional harm. The CHA informed her that lead poisoning, and the brain damage it caused, was not an emergency that warranted a move or any accommodation.

Working with our medical partners at Erie Family Health Center, we successfully defended the family’s rights under the ADA and secured a reasonable accommodation in the form of an immediate move to a lead-free home. In multiple subsequent cases, we obtained reasonable accommodations in the form of pre-rental lead hazard risk assessments and remediation. These measures would protect children from permanent neurological damage.

These cases were especially significant because they prompted nationwide policy change. As many as 2.5 million households with children, largely from communities of color, are at risk of lead poisoning in federally assisted housing because of antiquated standards that are not aligned with science. For example, across the country children are forced to stay in a home with a lead hazard until their blood lead levels exceed four times the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) definition.

To address these dangerous policy issues, the Health Justice Project collaborated with the Sargent Shriver National Center on Poverty Law and Green and Healthy Homes Initiative to convene a big tent coalition of national nonprofits and experts from public health, medical, civil rights, housing justice, children’s rights, and environmental justice fields, among others. Together, we petitioned the federal government for rulemaking pursuant to the Administrative Procedure Act. United teams of providers, lawyers, and patients urged members of Congress to become involved.  Senators Collins (R-ME), Reed (D-RI), Menendez (D-NJ), and Durbin (D-IL) requested that the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the Environmental Protection Agency amend their rules and introduced legislation to protect children from lead poisoning. HUD aligned the definition of lead poisoning with CDC standards in January 2017.

From an equal rights perceptive, where do we stand today?
In the last half century, advocates have struggled in solidarity with many groups facing discrimination. Together, we have achieved unparalleled victories, such as the Civil Rights Act, the Voting Rights Act, the right to same sex marriage, and the Americans with Disabilities Act. Yet, the work is not done. For example, despite the dismantling of Jim Crow laws, Black people have the lowest life expectancy of all races, the average wealth of a Black family is 5% that of a white family, and our communities are so segregated that 90% of people of color would need to move to eliminate racial segregation. At the same time, we know all too well that even progress can reverse itself, laws can be repealed, and a new Supreme Court can overturn longstanding decisions.

Today, we stand at a cross-roads. The new administration has resulted in unparalleled consciousness raising and a renewed opportunity to secure equal rights for every member of society. If awareness can compel action, like it did at airports across the country in the wake of the travel ban, equality will most certainly be realized.

You’ve had so many successes. Which one stands out the most for you?
As the founding director, the achievements of the Health Justice Project and lessons learned during my tenure are among the most important of my career. The Health Justice Project—a fully integrated medical-legal partnership at Erie Family Health Center that engages providers, medical residents, graduate students, and lawyers to address the social determinant of health—has taught me about the nuances of health justice in individual lives and the importance of interprofessional collaboration in achieving it.

As I reflect on the barriers our clients have overcome, it is evident that when medicine is seen as a vehicle of social justice, and law is an instrument of healthcare, the elimination of health inequity and social injustice becomes a tangible possibility. In fact, from my vantage point, standing beside advocates and Erie providers, health justice is clearly in sight.

For many of Erie’s patients, health outcomes are dictated largely by the social and legal issues that are far too common in poverty. Fortunately, when an Erie provider determines that poverty is the diagnosis, there is a standard treatment plan: Take two lawyers and call me in the morning. For a baby named Alex, a prescription for legal care meant an end to the rats infesting his home and causing his acute respiratory distress.  It meant that Ms. Walker was not forced to choose between lead poisoning or homelessness for her children. For another woman, Ms. Rodriguez, it meant working appliances to refrigerate her medication. For the 3,300 Erie patients referred for legal care since I founded the Health Justice Project, it has meant avoiding the health effects linked to eviction, preserving the family unit after a successful immigration application, additional income, food or cash benefits, among other outcomes that resulted in healthier, happier lives for Erie patients. These outcomes were made possible by my colleague Allyson Gold, Erie providers, Americorps VISTA volunteers, and over 200 law, medical and public health students.

What’s your one piece of advice to other lawyers across the country?
Step out of your silos. Social problems are interconnected; each begets the next. We can never see the whole issue, diagnose the problem, develop a solution, or engage in client-centered advocacy unless we collaborate with one another. As attorneys, we must recognize the intersecting nature of social problems and identify opportunities to partner with lawyers and other professionals who can best meet the needs of our clients. For instance, the chronic lead and arsenic poisoning of thousands of people over the past fifty years at the West Calumet Public Housing Complex in East Chicago, Indiana, demonstrates the critical nature of this strategy.  The case involved lawyers from the environmental justice, civil rights, housing, special education, health law, and poverty law fields. Equally important, it required grassroots organizers, public health epidemiologists, medical and scientific experts, and design strategists. A singular approach to the issue would not have remedied the issue or protected the residents.

If an attorney wants to get involved in social justice, how can they get started?
First, understand that your contribution is critical to the achievement of social justice. Never assume that someone else is addressing the injustice you see or hear. Second, seek out pro bono opportunities or partnerships with organizations that address issues important to you. Third, believe in the impossible and never forget that you are instrumental in achieving it. Fourth, social justice is not solely about resisting. It is also about envisioning a society in which all people are valued as equal and, ultimately, creating it.

If you strike out against injustice, I and countless others will be standing beside you, rising up, speaking out, and bolstering your every step. The urgency cannot be overstated. Do not hesitate. Not for a moment.

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New: The Complete Guide to Office 365 for Law Firms https://www.rocketmatter.com/technology/new-the-complete-guide-to-office-365-for-law-firms/ https://www.rocketmatter.com/technology/new-the-complete-guide-to-office-365-for-law-firms/#respond Wed, 19 Apr 2017 14:20:54 +0000 https://www.rocketmatter.com/?p=23789 When you work with thousands of law firms like I do, it’s pretty easy to identify tech trends. An unstoppable one is Microsoft Office 365 adoption in law firms. To help lawyers and other legal professionals understand how this version of Office is different than the rest, we’re happy to provide a free guide. Click here to […]

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When you work with thousands of law firms like I do, it’s pretty easy to identify tech trends. An unstoppable one is Microsoft Office 365 adoption in law firms.

To help lawyers and other legal professionals understand how this version of Office is different than the rest, we’re happy to provide a free guide. Click here to download The Complete Guide to Office 365 for Law Firms.

By some reports, Microsoft Office 365’s user base has increased by 47% in one year, and it’s no surprise why law firms in particular are adopting this product en masse:

* The new Microsoft Office product works equally on both Macs and PCs. Because of their highly-functional browser versions, you can spend $250 on a Chromebook, for instance, and still use Office.

* Die-hard Apple fans are beginning to throw in the towel after Pages, Keynote, and Numbers haven’t seen major updates in years.

* The mobile versions of Outlook, Word, Excel, and PowerPoint are well-designed and included in Office 365 subscriptions.

* Economically, the subscription model of Office 365 is very compelling for small businesses like law firms. Using Office becomes a small monthly expense, and there is no need for a significant outlay in cash for software licenses (as was the case with previous versions of Office).

* Additionally, lawyers can use Office 365 in concert with their other critical legal tools like Rocket Matter, so that documents can be associated with billable time and matters. Contacts, emails, and calendars can also fully integrate with legal practice management software.

Download your free copy of The Complete Guide to Office 365 for Law Firms today!

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Head-to-Toe Body Language Tips to Appear More Confident (Infographic) https://www.rocketmatter.com/attorney-wellness/head-toe-body-language-tips-appear-confident-infographic/ https://www.rocketmatter.com/attorney-wellness/head-toe-body-language-tips-appear-confident-infographic/#respond Tue, 18 Apr 2017 16:07:27 +0000 https://www.rocketmatter.com/?p=23699 It’s no secret that appearing confident has many physical and mental benefits. Recently, we published an article on the topic and addressed how to use your body language to seem more confident (even when you’re not!) Here’s another helpful tool: An infographic that really spells out the most important body language tips so that you can […]

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It’s no secret that appearing confident has many physical and mental benefits. Recently, we published an article on the topic and addressed how to use your body language to seem more confident (even when you’re not!)

Here’s another helpful tool: An infographic that really spells out the most important body language tips so that you can seem self-assured in any situation.

Click to enlarge the image and share if you love it!

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Welcome to the Rocket Matter Blog 2.0! https://www.rocketmatter.com/in-the-news/welcome-to-the-rocket-matter-blog-2-0/ https://www.rocketmatter.com/in-the-news/welcome-to-the-rocket-matter-blog-2-0/#respond Mon, 17 Apr 2017 19:14:41 +0000 https://www.rocketmatter.com/?p=23684   At Rocket Matter, we have been providing quality content for law firms since we launched more than nine years ago. We’re proud to have built a large following over the decade.  Rocket Matter’s audience consists of legal professionals who understand that their law firm is a business that needs to grow and be efficient.  Our […]

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Rocket Matter's Legal Productivity Blog

 

At Rocket Matter, we have been providing quality content for law firms since we launched more than nine years ago. We’re proud to have built a large following over the decade.  Rocket Matter’s audience consists of legal professionals who understand that their law firm is a business that needs to grow and be efficient.  Our readers value their health and wellness, and they understand that technology is more than just cool—it’s a vital tool.  Also, our lawyers are committed to increasing access to justice and making society better any way they can.

Specifically, our separate content blog, Legal Productivity, has been a joy to work on.  We’ve had a lot of success with it, and it has spawned an entire library of free e-books whitepapers, and infographics.

And now, we’re taking our content to a whole new level.

Recently, we began to realize that so much of the content on Legal Productivity was a reflection of who we are as a company, so we decided to consolidate it with our company blog into one single initiative.

Though Legal Productivity has a new home, you can still expect the same insight into technology and attorney health and wellness pieces that you’ve come to know and expect, as well as high-quality webinars (live and recorded) from industry thought leaders.  You can also still access our comprehensive advice on mobile tools and legal tech just as before.

It’s also going to get even better! We’re going to produce amazing original content focusing on social justice, like our Legal Freedom Fighter and How Attorneys Can Help series. You can expect us to blaze a trail with new ideas on running an effective business, leveraging ideas from Lean and Kanban as we prepare for the launch of an ABA book on the topic. We’re going to write investigative pieces looking at key issues in the legal field. And you’ll have even more ways to consume our content, as we have exciting new forays into video and podcasting.

As always, we want to hear what matters to you. Feel free to provide us feedback, suggest a story topic, or recommend someone to feature as a Legal Freedom Fighter at editorial@rocketmatter.com.

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iPad Tips and Tricks: Three Ways to Save Time and Be More Productive https://www.rocketmatter.com/technology/ipad-tips-and-tricks-be-more-productive/ Wed, 12 Apr 2017 16:09:46 +0000 http://www.legalproductivity.com/?p=23344 These are many ways an iPad can improve your daily productivity. Aside from knowing about and using the best apps and services, having a good handle on the ‘little things’ will shave minutes off of your repetitive actions every day. In other words, knowing all the tricks of the trade will really help you best use […]

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These are many ways an iPad can improve your daily productivity. Aside from knowing about and using the best apps and services, having a good handle on the ‘little things’ will shave minutes off of your repetitive actions every day. In other words, knowing all the tricks of the trade will really help you best use this device and maximize the amount of work you can get done. Here are just a few:
1: Use Split View and Slide Over to take advantage of your screen space
Split View and Slide Over are very powerful ways to make the most of your iPad’s gorgeous screen. While it is best on the big 12.9” iPad Pro, they also work very well on its smaller 9.7” sibling. This feature allows you to have two applications open and fully running side-by-side—all without wasting a pixel of screen space.

Even though similar, Split View and Slide Over are slightly different: Slide Over gives you quick access to a second app and disappears when you tap on the main app on the left. Meanwhile, Split View really lets you multitask. Two apps can run at the same time, each taking up a part of your screen.

How to use these features: With an App open, simply slide your finger towards the left starting at the right edge of your screen. The first stop will be Slide Over where you see a little ‘handle’ appear in the dividing line. Give this handle another swipe to the left for Split View and then scroll down the list of Apps on the right side to choose another App to open.

iPad slide over

 

 

2: Maximize Safari

Safari has lots to offer in its clean, uncluttered layout. There are also a few hidden gems. For instance, there are two icons along the top toolbar in particular that can do more than meets the eye.

At the far right, you will see the plus sign and a stacked square looking icon. The plus sign lets you create a new tab for a new webpage, while the stacked icon expands your tabs into separate pages to choose from. Note that in this mode you can create another tab or choose ‘Private.’ In Private mode, Safari does not store any browsing data and once you close out, there is no history of your browsing activity stored on your iPad.

Another benefit of the plus sign: Say you had some really important tabs open but closed them either accidentally or purposefully. Now you need one or more of them back! Relax, Safari has your back. Tap and hold the plus sign, and you will see a list of Recently Closed Tabs. Just tap on the one you want to retrieve, and you are back in business.

The stacked icon has its own magic: Tap on it and hold for a second, and you will see a menu offering to create a New Tab or to conveniently Close All Tabs. Some advice: If you create tabs for the purpose of accessing multiple Safari windows easily, your best option may be to just use Split View.

Ipad split view

 

 

3: Mark up documents in Mail

The Mail app is a great place to manage all of your email accounts. You can have multiple accounts from different services such as iCloud, Google, Yahoo, Outlook, Exchange, and your own domain. This helps streamline things by keeping all of your accounts in one place yet also allowing you to view your individual accounts and messages separately.

How can you use Mail to be more productive? Well, have you ever needed to sign or make a notation on a PDF you have received as an attachment? Mail makes this quick and easy and doesn’t require any other apps.

Here’s what to do: Tap on the PDF attachment in your Mail message to open it. If you then tap on the toolbox icon on the top right corner of the screen, your PDF will open in Markup mode, offering you a collection of editing tools. Along the bottom of your screen you’ll see the pen tool, which works great with your Apple Pencil for writing and as a loupe to magnify a portion of the document. The text tool allows you to create a text box, and the signature tool will allow you to create and save signatures to your documents. You can create more than one signature here to quickly add your signature or initials whenever you need them (in case your Apple Pencil isn’t handy at the moment). On the right, you are given options for editing colors, pen stroke thickness, and font options.

When you are finished marking up your document, tap Done at the top right corner and Mail will attach your edited copy to an outgoing return email for you to send back. I told you: It’s so easy!

iPad email markup

 

Terry Jarrell is an Apple consultant, Rocket Matter Certified Expert, and instructor based in Florida. Terry has been supporting legal professionals for more than a decade, and he also provides Florida Bar accredited CLE instruction and personalized technical services.

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Office 365: The Fundamentals https://www.rocketmatter.com/legal-billing/office-365/ Tue, 11 Apr 2017 13:30:23 +0000 http://www.legalproductivity.com/?p=23331 You might have been hearing a lot of talk about Office 365 recently. For instance, there has been buzz about how awesome it is that it integrates with products like Rocket Matter, the leading cloud-based legal practice management system. But what is Office 365? And how is it different from regular ole’ Microsoft Office? Here, we’ll break it all down for […]

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You might have been hearing a lot of talk about Office 365 recently. For instance, there has been buzz about how awesome it is that it integrates with products like Rocket Matter, the leading cloud-based legal practice management system.

But what is Office 365? And how is it different from regular ole’ Microsoft Office? Here, we’ll break it all down for you so you’ll get a better idea of what’s included with this powerful subscription and how you can apply it to your law practice:

What’s Microsoft Office?
Let’s start at the beginning. “Microsoft Office” refers to the original collection of productivity software published by Microsoft back in 1988 (Yup. You read that correctly). The bundled suite of applications originally included Microsoft Word, Microsoft Powerpoint, and Microsoft Excel. The collection has since grown to include Microsoft Outlook, Access, OneNote, Publisher, Project, and Visio.

This software was designed to be installed locally on your PC or Mac. The applications are not automatically updated, meaning you have to keep purchasing the latest package every time a new version becomes available.

What’s Office 365?
“Office 365” refers to subscription plans that include access to Microsoft Office applications in addition to productivity services that are enabled over the Internet (cloud services). Any programs on the cloud are accessible on every one of your desktop and mobile devices.

Many Office 365 plans also include the desktop (locally installed) versions of the latest Microsoft Office applications: Word, Excel, Powerpoint, OneNote, Outlook, Publisher and Access (Publisher and Access are PC-only). You can install these programs on multiple devices—the total number depends on your subscription plan—including mobile devices such as your iPhone, iPad, or Android phones and tablets. If you have a plan that includes both cloud and desktop software, you’ll receive automatic updates for each application so you’ll always stay up to date.

There are also online-only plans that are designed to work with previously-installed versions of Microsoft Office (if you already have the suite installed on your computer.) You can click here for more details about which versions are supported.

How is Office 365 Cloud-Enabled?
When you use the cloud-based services of Office 365, your documents and files are located and managed remotely on servers owned by Microsoft (you can alternately store things locally on your computer if you choose). This means less IT costs for you because you won’t have to maintain a server on—site at your home or office. Because this infrastructure is located in the cloud, you can access it virtually anywhere, from any computer or mobile device with an Internet connection.

The setup is incredibly easy, and Office 365 offers you step-by-step guidance to get your law firm up and running. Office 365 is highly scalable and can support everything from a one-person business to companies with tens of thousands of users. There are even plans that cater to education and non-profits. Most law firms would fall under a Office 365 Business plan, which can be used with companies up to 300 users. Prices start at $8.25 per user per month for an annual commitment.

If your firm isn’t currently using Office 365 for its productivity needs or if you need more convincing, check out our webinar wrap-up where legal tech guru Allan Mackenzie discuss why all lawyers should use Office 365. Heck, Tom Lambotte, CEO of GlobalMacIT, recommends it just for the e-mail services alone!

With Office 365, you’ll save your firm an insane amount of time and money. And just think about the benefits of having it integrate with a legal practice management system like Rocket Matter! With such powerful capabilities, you’ll wonder why you didn’t start sooner.

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Happy Passover from Rocket Matter! https://www.rocketmatter.com/featured/happy-passover-from-rocket-matter/ Mon, 10 Apr 2017 14:36:42 +0000 http://www.legalproductivity.com/?p=23321 Starting tonight at sundown, Passover 2017 begins. It continues for 8 nights, through the 18th. This holiday honors and celebrates the liberation of the Israelites from Egyptian enslavement more than 3,000 years ago. For those of you celebrating and heading to seders tonight, we wish you a happy, happy Passover. Whether or celebrating or not, we thought you’d enjoy this creative, […]

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Starting tonight at sundown, Passover 2017 begins. It continues for 8 nights, through the 18th. This holiday honors and celebrates the liberation of the Israelites from Egyptian enslavement more than 3,000 years ago. For those of you celebrating and heading to seders tonight, we wish you a happy, happy Passover.

Whether or celebrating or not, we thought you’d enjoy this creative, hilarious video from Y-Studs A Cappella (especially if you’re a fan of La La Land.) Enjoy!

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