Affinity Consulting Blog

Technology is forever changing. What was the latest and greatest technology just five years ago is today’s dinosaur. All businesses, law firms included, must keep up with changes in technology. Today’s lawyers are more mobile, more automated and more data driven than ever before. We can reasonably take judicial notice that lawyers must address any technology fears, prepare to budget significant funds into our technology and embrace these changes, or risk being that dinosaur in, perhaps, five (or fewer) years. Perhaps even be shunned from the business world for failure to keep up with changes in technology. Below are, in this author’s opinion, seven (7) things to be prepared for in legal technology in the coming years.

Affinity Consulting loves to help improve the lives of our customers. We thought you might enjoy getting to know about the lives of some of our team members who help make that happen. Each month we will feature another member of the Affinity Team. Get to know us!

Meet Barb Schucker, Office Manager of the Affinity Consulting Columbus office in central Ohio. Barb joined Affinity in February of 2010 when she worked for a downsizing law firm who was an Affinity client. Affinity was happy to scoop her up! Barb's daily efforts include caring for our clients to be sure that they receive the information and attention they need most.

This month, guest author Stephen Fairley of The Rainmaker Institute brings us part 1 of a 2-part article on building a referral-based law firm. Watch for part 2 in the February 2016 newsletter.

If you want to get your year off to a blockbuster start with an increase in referrals and revenues then you need to find a way to reconnect with and stay connected to the three groups of people who are your best source of new business: current clients, past clients, and others (attorneys and non-attorney professionals) who have served as referral sources for you in the past.

One of the best and most used features in Word, particularly for lawyers, is Track Changes. Although the recent versions of Word improved the default settings for this feature, there remains room for improvement.

The iPad's arrival in 2010 was supposed to herald the beginning of the post-PC era. While the iPad's initial success was notable, and it remains the best device for some tasks lawyers do, iPad sales have slowed.

This may be because "real work" for most lawyers still requires a personal computer (Windows or Mac). This can be a desktop, traditional clamshell laptop, or, increasingly, a 2 in 1 convertible like the Microsoft's Surface Pro series.

Introduction: We're proud to welcome colleague Stephen Fairley as guest author for this month's newsletter. Stephen has a wealth of experience and knowledge when it comes to growing effective marketing strategies in law firms. As we begin to look towards the new year, what better time to hear from him on what to tackle in order to grow your firm in 2016.

It's difficult to stay on the plateau in business-either your revenues are increasing or declining and you can guarantee your expenses will increase every year. As you review your 2015 revenues, did you meet your financial goals? Did you exceed them? If you aren't pleased with how much you made or want to significantly improve in 2016 what will be different about what you do this year?

Dropbox rolled out an enterprise version of its web based file-sharing network this month to combat concerns that it is not a secure platform for businesses, including law firms.

Dropbox has been criticized by a variety of sources that it is not secure and therefore not a trusted consideration for business use. Prior to this release, Dropbox was one of the top blacklisted consumer apps by MobileIron, based in Mountain View, CA.

Historically, Dropbox users are individuals. Looking at their brief history, it is clear that Dropbox evolved primarily as a way for consumers to collaborate and store data in a cloud-based folder system. That is a start, but business users, such as law firms, need more.

Affinity Consulting loves to help improve the lives of our customers. We thought you might enjoy getting to know about the lives of some of our team members who help make that happen. Each month we will feature another member of the Affinity Team. Get to know us!

Meet Bryce Phillips, Legal Technology Consultant. Bryce has been a part of the Affinity Team since 2011 when he joined the IT Department in our Ohio office. As he says, "a little luck and a lot of hard work" has brought him to being an integral part of Affinity’s Document Management Team. Bryce loves telling everyone that he “hasn’t worked a day since 2011” when he began helping our clients realize their potential through the training and software we provide. Outside of Affinity, Bryce and his wife Katie enjoy spending time with their 10 year old son, Brennan, at their lake house. They spend most of their summers there boating and cooking out. Bryce also enjoys coaching and helping out on his son’s little leagueteam, winning 2 local championships.

Microsoft's recent hardware announcement had one big surprise - the new Surface Book. It is Microsoft's first laptop. But it is a laptop with an added feature - a removable screen to use as a tablet.

My own use case for this form factor? I plan to work with the Surface Book in laptop mode as my primary travel computer. Then I will detach the screen to use it as a tablet at oral argument of my appellate cases. Others will have different use cases for the detached tablet mode Microsoft calls "Clipboard." In theory, it could be a Windows alternative to Apple's upcoming iPad Pro.

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