Nov 22 2016

OneNote and Office Lens – hidden gem or does everyone know?

Jason

This is one of those blog posts that I’ve thought about for a while, but worried that I was stating the bleeding obvious and so have put it off. I’ve used Office Lens and OneNote for so long now that I figure others must know about it and be using it? But if not then there are folks missing out on a really useful tool for anyone who needs to collate information from various sources (whiteboard write ups, projector screens, hand written notes on paper, printed documents, business cards etc). Given that law firms are mainly users of Microsoft Office and are now generally on smartphone platforms it’s a great combination for the lawyers.

So here we go.

Office Lens: This is a smartphone app for iPhone, Android and Windows 10 Mobile. Its purpose is to allow you to quickly take notes using the phones camera.

The app allows simple selection of some defaults (whiteboard, document etc) to set things up and then attempts to auto crop the content (and does a good job for most things). You can then fine tune this before accepting the photo, where the app then flattens and straightens up the image (so if you’ve taken the photo at an angle what you end up with is a nice flat image).

officelens

You can then email the document or import quickly into one of the key Microsoft Office apps, the most useful I have found being One Note. It’s a really quick way to collate notes together in a OneNote notebook. For scanned images where the text is machine readable OneNote then OCR’s the content and makes it searchable in the notebook. For business cards you can of course simply photo the card and immediately add the information directly as digital contact to mobile address books – there’s an article here on how to do this.

Best of all it’s totally free.

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Oct 31 2016

Cool shortcuts in Outlook using Office Apps in Office 2013 and beyond

Jason

I’ve been using Office 365 for a while at home and recently it updated to the 2016 equivalent version. It was then I started to notice some nice shortcuts in the email message that will be a real bonus within law firms. The two I noticed were “Suggested Meetings” and “Action Items”, they appear just above the message body.

emailBasically each one appears if they notice things within the email, first up in this case it has noticed some text “catch up ….. this Sunday 11th Sept” which it is using to suggest a meeting for me.

schedule-meeting-2Now in this case the date has passed but from here I can quickly click “Edit Details” and it fills in as much as it can in a calendar appointment, shortcutting the process of scheduling meetings (it even used the email addresses to schedule other recipients for the meeting).

Here’s an example of one that is in the future.

schedule-meetingIn this case I can just add the location if required and click the schedule event button and it’s done!

The “Action Items” option just pulls out from an email the key actions it thinks are required. Basically giving you a quick summary of what’s required from you in a long email.

actionsIn this case a request to see the attachment and a reminder not to communicate further just yet. I can flag for follow up from here.

There is also a Bing maps add-in that recognises addresses from the email and can quickly show you a map of the location within the email body. Since finding these I’ve also found a Wunderlist app add-in that lets me quickly add information from an email into my wunderlist task list.

And the best bit is you don’t need to worry about these adding to the long list of COM add-ins within Outlook that slow down your startup time, these are all of the new Office 365 add-in type that eventually should work across all Office 365 platforms (web, desktop, tablet etc).

I just wonder how emails stored in iManage Work behave? Anyone with iManage and Office 2013 or above care to comment below?

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Aug 31 2016

A helping hand for following ILTA from afar via twitter by hashtags

Jason

Better late than never, but following #ILTACON on twitter can at times be a little confusing when trying to match the session title to the session hashtag on the tweets. So I pulled together all the session titles together with a link to a hashtag search for that session. Also grouped by the time in UK time in case you’re following live and want to catch what the session is (US East coast take off 5 hours). Hope it helps!

Wednesday 31st August 2016

All times UK
14:00
KEYNOTE: Your Keynote Antidote: ILTACON’s Hard-Hitting News Show – #ILTAKEY3
Remote Users: The Walking, Talking Security Risk – #ILTA093A
Refining Your E-Discovery Reporting – #ILTA093B
Alternative Email Arrangements To Reduce the Clutter – #ILTA093C
Finding a Needle in a Haystack with 21st-Century Expertise Systems – #ILTA094
16:00
The State of Play of Artificial Intelligence in Law – #ILTA095
Matters from Laterals: A Matter Mobility Workshop – #ILTA096
Keep Up With Trends in Today’s Data Centers – #ILTA097
Is Enterprise Search Worth the Money? – #ILTA098
Learning Management System Wild West Shootout! – #ILTA099
PM vs. LPM Project Modeling: Differences, Applications and Templates – #ILTA100
Risk Management Unboxed – #ILTA101
Exchange 2016: Why and How To Upgrade – #ILTA102
Grading Susskind: The State of Legal 20 Years After the “Future of Law” – #ILTA103
From Production to Trial: The Tools We Use and Still Need – #ILTA104
Lights, Cameras, Action! Producing Blockbuster Training Videos on a Budget – #ILTA105
Similar Issues and Solutions: A Small Firms Discussion Forum – #ILTA106
Burnout to Badass: Energize. Engage. Ignite. – #ILTA107
Life After Death by PowerPoint – #ILTA108
18:30
A View from Above: The C-Level Perspective on Change – #ILTA109
Face Your Fears: Embracing Change in the Legal Environment – #ILTA110
Governing Data In the Cloud – #ILTA111
Danger! Navigating the File-Sharing Minefield – #ILTA112
Building KM Together: Creating Collaboration Between Law Firms and Law Departments – #ILTA113
When Project Management and E-Discovery Management Collide – #ILTA114
Mapping the Customer Journey – #ILTA115
Two (and More) Heads Are Better Than One! A Pricing Roundtable – #ILTA116
It’s a Multifactor Authentication Shoot Out! – #ILTA117
Dot Your I’s and Cross Your T’s with the Right Document Proofreading Software – #ILTA118
Preventing IT Procurement Pitfalls – #ILTA119
iManage Company Update and Road Ahead – #ILTA120
Law Firm 101: A Sneak Peek at ILTA’s E-Learning Initiative – #ILTA121
RFPs: Is There a Better Process? – #ILTA122
20:30
The Essential Toolbox for Data Quality Management and Visualization – #ILTA123
Can We See What They See? A Preview of What Law Department Analytics Tools Look Like – #ILTA124
Finding the Fun in Writing Fundamentals – #ILTA125
How To Effectuate a Better Legal Services Delivery Model – #ILTA126
Unleashing the Performance Power of Your Desktop – #ILTA127
Developing and Managing Emotional Intelligence – #ILTA128
Don’t Do That! Lessons from the IT and KM Trenches – #ILTA129
Windows Server 2016: What’s New, What’s Not? – #ILTA130
The Future of Law Firms in the E-Discovery Space: A Client’s Perspective – #ILTA131
The Why and How of a Paper-Light Office – #ILTA132
Automated Contract Review: Machine Learning Comes to Corporate Law – #ILTA133
Checking for Weak Links: Security Audits of Your Most Popular Platforms – #ILTA134
Effectively Managing Outside Counsel Guidelines – #ILTA135
Aderant Expert Billing – #ILTA136

Thursday 1st September 2016

All times UK
14:00
KEYNOTE: ILTA Showcase: Fast and Furious Presentations by Distinguished Peer Award Nominees – #ILTAKEY4
Business and Legal Aspects of Mobile, Social and Emerging Technologies – #ILTA138A
Innovative Data Exchanges and Collaboration with Clients – #ILTA137
The Evolution of SharePoint 2016 – #ILTA138
Maximizing Efficiencies with Technology-Backed Workflows – #ILTA139
The Intersection Between Records Information Management & Info Governance – #ILTA140A
LEDES Oversight Committee Bi-Annual Members Meeting – #ILTA137A
Evolving DMS Security Models To Meet Client & Compliance Requirements – #ILTA140
16:00
Respond Effectively to Your First Client Security Audit – #ILTA141
A Lab for Next-Generation Leaders – #ILTA142
Data Mining: Leveraging Information To Make Strategic Decisions – #ILTA143
Innovating Together: Building Partnerships Between Law Firms, Clients and Vendors – #ILTA144
Building the Right Infrastructure for VDI – #ILTA145
How Future Technology Will Affect Litigation Support – #ILTA146
Laptops and Tablets and Hybrids! Oh, My! – #ILTA147
Supporting Lateral Attorney Integration Through Knowledge Management – #ILTA148
Making Educated Decisions with Cost-Benefit Analyses – #ILTA149
Is Physical Office Space Really Needed? – #ILTA150
Why UTBMS Codes Aren’t a Waste of Time – #ILTA151
The Wikipedia of Legal: ILTA Staff Legal Industry Perspectives from the ‘80s, ‘90s and Today – #ILTA152
18:30
Choosing the Right Artificial Intelligence for the Job – #ILTA153
Kicking It Up a Notch with System Center Configuration Manager 2016 – #ILTA154
How To Establish Data Classification and Improve Client Audits – #ILTA155
Threat Protection for Virtual Systems – #ILTA156
IT Project Portfolio Management – #ILTA157
Reinventing Traditional Support Staff Roles in a Buyer’s Market – #ILTA158
A Road Map To Gathering and Analyzing Client Discovery Data Across Matters – #ILTA159
Helping Lawyers Meet Ethical Obligation of Technical Proficiency – #ILTA160
Pain-Free Video-conferencing with Clients – #ILTA161
I’m in Charge! Now What? Skills for New Managers – #ILTA162
19:45
Can Information Rights Management and Document Management Systems Play Well Together? – #ILTA165
ILTA Town Hall – #ILTA166
Hacking Law Firm Innovation – #ILTA167
The Dark Web: The Wild West of the Internet – #ILTA168
Learning to Prosper Using Client Data You Already Have – #ILTA169
A New Approach To Aligning the Objectives of Outside Counsel, In-House Legal and Corporate Business – #ILTA170
Gather ‘Round for a Litigation Support Roundtable – #ILTA171
The Gang’s All Here! A Marketing Technology Roundtable – #ILTA172
Onboarding: A Process Mapping Exercise – #ILTA173
Current Threat Landscapes and Protective Measures – #ILTA174
Extreme Makeover: Webinar Edition – #ILTA175
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Oct 4 2009

Run! She’s gonna blow! – Top 5 tips for controlling your inbox.

Jason

You may be interested in a BBC TV program on tomorrow evening (5th October ‘09), “email is ruining my life” on BBC4 at 9:30pm.

Libby Potter investigates whether e-mail helps or hinders workplace performance, and shows how to control it rather than letting it control us.

Is your inbox out of control? Is your day managed through reaction to the next email received? Do you wish you could come back from holiday to less than ten emails?

Who said No? Can I please swap places with you?

I totally agree with the BBC programs synopsis, email is out of control. There’s far too much about. But you can’t just sit and complain, you really need to keep on top of it. Especially if you use Outlook and Exchange (if you’re using the former at work, you’re probably using the later also).

Why?

Firstly large numbers on items in your inbox, calendars etc = POOR performance.**

I usually recommend no more than about 2500 – 5000 messages in any of the critical path folders.  The critical path folders are the Calendar, Contacts, Inbox, and Sent Item folder. Ideally, keep the Inbox, Contacts and Calendar to 1000 or less. This from a blog post on The Microsoft Exchange Team blog.

Secondly, if you’re a lawyer then you really should be looking after the electronic file in the same way you do a paper file. Keeping an organised inbox can help with this.

So here’s my top 5 tips on how to tackle the ever increasing deluge of email:

  1. Deal with it immediately. If the email is a simple question or can be dealt with in <5secs then do it, then immediately delete or file it. For anything else move to step 2!
  2. Use sub folders and file incoming email immediately. Create sub folders for matters, projects or non matter groupings. Then file the incoming email on receipt. You can always use an Outlook search to read unread emails across all these sub folders. This way you keep your inbox item count low.
  3. Get into the habit of cleaning out your calendar regularly. Either go into your calendar and delete old items once a month or create an “Archive Calendar” and move your old appointments into it (that is if you really want to refer to what you were doing on 7th September 2004!)
  4. Get rid of junk mail. You may be lucky and be in a firm that uses a good spam filter already (if not take a look around at the personal spam filters available – I quite like SpamFighter). But in addition unsubscribe from all those vendor emails, news lists etc emails to cut down the noise coming into your inbox.
  5. Finally, Archive! Get rid of large volumes of old email by archiving it. If your firm has a document management system that you can file emails to, then file them (if you’ve used step 2 this should be easier). Your firm may also have an enterprise archiving tool, get your emails in that and out of your inbox! If neither of these, then simply archive to a PST (then burn the PST to DVD and remember, only attach it to Outlook when required!).

If you’ve got any other killer tips for keeping the email volume down, then put them in the comments.

And finally, take a look at this YouTube video that introduces Google Wave. Google Wave is Google’s attempt to look at email/electronic communication from a fresh perspective.  Maybe one day email will be truly a thing of the past!

** this point is for Exchange 2003, which is still the most widespread version in corporate IT

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