LINK App Enhanced Email Swipe Menus & VIP Notifications

Let’s face it, Email is vital to our work, but it’s also tedious and time consuming. In LINK we care about features which make Email management more efficient.

LINK’s configurable “Swipe Menus” are one of those features. Here are 3 key things to know about Swipe Menus.

I. Color-Coded: By popular demand, menus are now color-coded per the task.

Inbox Swipe Menus

DELETE: RED

ARCHIVE : BLUE

FLAG: ORANGE

REPLY/FORWARD/FILE: GREY

VIP: RED

READ/UNREAD: BLUE

II. More Options from Either Side

Now you can select any of these options from either Left or Right Slide: Delete, File, Flag, Unread, Forward, Reply, VIP, Archive

There are 3 swipe left options and 2 swipe right options.

III. Settings

From the Inbox, tap the Gear Icon, in the upper right to go to Settings. Select your options. Then Save.

Email Settings from the Gear Icon in the Inbox

Bonus: VIP Notifications

Don’t forget to use your VIP features. You can make any correspondent a VIP by swiping and tapping on VIP. Then in Settings, select a distinct sound for VIP notifications. Learn all about VIP notifications in this video.

I hope that these swipe menus make your life easier!

If you have any questions, please write to me at contact@mobilehelix.com.

–Maureen

Paperless Legal Pre-bill Approvals with the LINK App

Before we all moved to working from home, were your attorneys and paralegals approving pre-bills by marking up paper? And now? Are you scanning reams of paper? Printing and FedEx-ing?

In late 2018 we were contacted by the head of Knowledge Management of an AmLaw 100 law firm. They had a specific goal: to make approval of pre-bills paperless and easy to do on an iPad. They have a practice which has high monthly transactions. Some partners were approving several thousand pre-bills per month on paper. This was difficult enough when a partner was in the office. It was untenable if the partner had to travel. This firm had heard about our LINK app’s built-in annotation and integration with DMS. They wanted to know if we could help.

Marking up pre-bills is easy to do with LINK. Here is a common workflow:

  1. Accounting uploads the pre-bills to a folder in DMS.
  2. Attorney goes to that folder in DMS from the LINK app.
  3. Attorney annotates the pre-bills using LINK’s in-app annotation.
  4. Attorney saves the marked-up pre-bill to DMS from the LINK app.
  5. Accounting retrieves the marked-up pre-bills.

That’s all there is to it. In LINK you can mark-up a pre-bill with a pencil or a finger. Add a stamp or note. You can even capture your signature then place it on documents.

This law firm started approving pre-bills with LINK in 2019. Their partners are very pleased with the improved process. There is no going back to paper for them.

There are variations to the workflow. Instead of DMS the firm may upload the pre-bills to network file shares or OneDrive. Or, the pre-bills may be emailed to the attorney, marked up in LINK, and then emailed back. LINK can be used on a phone instead of a tablet.

You may watch a video showing two workflows, one using DMS and one using email, below.

in legal we are seeing that this pandemic presents an opportunity for certain productivity improvements. Not only in the case of Zoom, but usage of DocuSign has rocketed. “Never let a crisis go to waste.”

We would be happy to discuss your pre-bill workflow and how LINK could apply to it.

-Maureen

contact@mobilehelix.com +1 347-508-0967

LINK App: Paperless Legal Pre-bill Approval Workflows 8:54 from LINK App by Mobile Helix on Vimeo.

Can you say second-factor authentication in Japanese?

Iikura-san in Japan kindly translates all of our Mobile Helix press releases to Japanese and posts them to his site. Take a look. 

Or, read our press release on our new LINK Second-Factor Authentication in English.

フォト

【LINK Mobileアプリは、弁護士が、スマートフォンやタブレットを使用して、法的なワークフローを、容易で、セキュアにする。】 ‘16.01.14
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Legal Disrupted. A Case of the Innovator’s Dilemma

lawyer-450205_150 Scales of JusticeNo profession is immune from disruption. A business with a value of $400 billion per year is a attractive target for newcomers, ranging from financial institutions to startups. Can legal ward off its challengers? Not without changing.

“The Innovator’s Dilemma” refers to Clayton Christensen’s theory that successful companies are too focused on customers’ current needs and that they fail to adopt technologies that will fulfill customers’ future or unspoken needs. When the goose is laying the golden eggs, it can be challenging to focus on what happens after the goose is gone. Think of Blockbuster’s collapse to Netflix or Amazon’s decision to develop the Kindle. The question for the mammoth book retailer was whether they should dig in their heels and fight ebooks which threatened to cannibalize their hard copy book sales. Jeff Bezos was savvy to the Innovator’s Dilemma and chose to lead in ebooks. Today Amazon controls 67% of the ebook market.

But the Innovator’s Dilemma pertains to technology. The legal profession is not about technology…or is it?

For context, let’s look at the thoughtful internet debate over the past few weeks. The catalyst was the post, “The Profession is Doomed,” by Toby Brown, published in 3 Geeks and a Law Blog. Toby had participated in a National Conference of Bar Presidents panel on the future of the profession.

One of the panel members described a change coming in Washington State where the first licenses to Limited Licensure Legal Technicians (LLLT) will be granted this spring. An LLLT is a new non-lawyer legal professional who may advise and assist clients. An LLLT must meet certain criteria but can qualify with an associate level degree. Approval of LLLT was opposed by the Board of Governors of the Washington Bar Association but was approved by the Washington Supreme Court. Brown writes that the focus of the conference presidents and executives was on finding ways to kill the LLLT.

Brown left the conference that day convinced that the profession is doomed because those in power in the profession won’t drive change, leaving it open to disruption from without.

Another compelling post on this topic, “Big Law as Legal Fiction and the Lack of Innovation,” is written by Ron Dolin who is with the Stanford Center on the Legal Profession. Dolin looks at how Big Law firms make decisions and how they decide to innovate, or not.

Dolin points out that the stagnant growth in 75% of the AM100 contrasted with the rapid growth in lower margin legal services startups such as LegalZoom and Rocket Lawyer is evidence that change in Big Law is needed.

Dolin references Prof. William Henderson of Indiana University Law School who commends the innovation of Bryan Cave, Seyfarth Shaw, and Littler Mendelson, yet estimates that “only 10-15% of large law firms have embarked on strategic initiatives that take into account the ‘New Normal.’” Henderson has warned of a train wreck along the lines of the Innovator’s Dilemma coming in Big Law in the next 5 to 10 years.

So why are Big Law firms moving slowly? Per Dolin, Big Law grapples with various paralyzing questions: Is change really needed? Would it best to see if a few firms fail before action is taken? How significant will the costs be? It’s easy to see that PCs make sense, but how does one know how far to take new technology? And, will the benefits of these new potentially expensive changes be realized after current partners retire? Dolin points to the partner system as deterrent to innovation in Big Law.

Our view is far brighter. Today’s solutions can enable traditional legal to become more nimble and cost-effective. As a matter of disclosure, our company, Mobile Helix, provides a mobile app designed specifically for lawyers which allows lawyers to work with DMS, files, SharePoint and email from anywhere. In essence, we enable lawyers to be more responsive to clients and to get greater value from their time.

Mobility is a huge gift to lawyers. Every day we support firms which are earnestly working to provide more productivity to their lawyers. As one legal IT director stated, the ROI on any ten or fifteen minutes which a lawyer can recoup on the go is high and the personal satisfaction is great.

Mobility reduces costs because time is used more productively. Lightweight mobile solutions are a very effective way for law firms to drive efficiencies. There are technologies, including ours, which can be adopted today without massive investment. The ROI begins on the first day, not years from now.

Toby Brown did legal a service by raising the flag on this subject. Legal need not be doomed. But innovation and action is required…and the clock is ticking.

–Maureen

Mobile App Blacklisting – An Exercise in Futility

sisyphus Image

The theory goes something like this. Mobile apps are the unregulated Wild West. Users are unable to make informed choices about which apps are “safe” and “appropriate” for work and therefore cannot be trusted. IT must assume the worst and create a “blacklist”1 of risky applications that that cannot be downloaded to any personal mobile device “approved” for work. This ensures the enterprise remains safe and free from infection while allowing employees to work using personal mobile devices. IT can sleep easier at night, employees are happy. Well, not really…

The App store had 1.3 million applications available for download in September 20142. This number is growing rapidly, from 1 million in October 2013. Then there is the Google Play store, the Windows store and others. How in practice can the IT team of any average company stay current on this vast app offering, blessing the good and weeding out the bad apples? Well they cannot. As fast as IT blacklists, enticing new apps appear. IT has no choice but to blacklist indiscriminately – preventing employees from using many powerful and completely benign mobile apps to do their jobs. An exercise in futility indeed. So, is app blacklisting worth the considerable effort required to implement and enforce?

Not only is app blacklisting an exercise in futility, it is also directly contrary to the compelling reasons to embrace enterprise mobility in the first place. Recent research from Citrix3 shows that two of the five most commonly blacklisted mobile apps are Dropbox (for file access and sharing) and personal email. Does blacklisting Dropbox and personal email access help or hinder the enterprise?

Employees need access to their enterprise files to work. Accessing personal email on a personal mobile device is a critical need. Why are users downloading Dropbox and personal email to their personal mobile devices? Is it so they can maliciously infect enterprise networks and threaten sensitive corporate data or is it so they can work more and be more productive in their personal time while outside the office? The answer is pretty obvious.

The majority of employees are motivated by good. They want to work as productively and effectively as possible. They want to use their down-time efficiently and get work done. This is why they are willing to use personal mobile devices that they purchase and pay for themselves to do so.

Blacklisting is a brute force approach that provides a false sense of security for IT. Blacklisting penalizes the most committed and valuable workers, punishing them for wanting to be more productive using their own personal mobile device. Something is very wrong here.

We have written previously about the “Legal Mobility Disconnect”. App blacklisting contributes to this significant productivity gap. The answer is for IT to lead and provide users with the mobile tools they need to do their job and get work done. This starts with file access and email. These IT provided solutions must be intuitive and easy to use. They must be secure and they must be readily available without imposing unreasonable restrictions on personal mobile device use outside of work.

If this post resonates, please explore Link by Mobile Helix and see if it offers you an alternative and more practical path to sustained, secure enterprise productivity. For those who remain unconvinced and plan to continue blacklisting, then you may want to read about Sisyphus4, who was engaged in a similar exercise in futility thousands of years ago – in his case for eternity.

We would love to hear what you think so please let us know.

– Matt

Notes and Links:

1. What is Application Blacklisting?
2. Statista App Store Statistics.
3. Citrix Mobile Analytics Report – February 2015.
4. The Myth of Sisyphus.

My Favorite Reads of the Week

Each week I post a few of my fave reads related to tech and business. This week: addictive apps, being a minority in tech, what you owe your employer, and why some workers don’t love BYOD.

VW bus

Why Your Workers Hate BYOD

Hoping to get away without sharing your location with your law firm IT department? Using a health-related app on your personal smartphone? Device management by employers is getting some backlash. Tom Kaneshige, @kaneshige, writing in CIO.com, explores these concerns with BYOD. Disclosure: our Mobile Helix Link mobile app does not track employee movements or capture information regarding personal apps.

Five Things You Owe Your Employer – And Five You Don’t

Liz Ryan, @humanworkplace, CEO and founder of Human Workplace, with some solid pointers. For example, you do owe your integrity; you don’t owe your soul.

The Other Side of Diversity

A sobering narrative of Erica Joy’s career moving from “a young black lady to a black woman in the predominantly white male tech industry.” From Alaska to the San Francisco Bay area and points in-between.

Why Messaging Apps are So Addictive

Who doesn’t want to build a habit forming app? Nir Eyal, @nireyal, author of Hooked: How to Build Habit Forming Products, outlines how hooks work in apps. This is good stuff.

–Maureen, @mobilehelix