PLTG Meeting – July 9, 2010
Offices of Bryan Cave.
1290 Avenue of the Americas
Call to Order
President Alan Fricke welcomed the group and thanked Bryan Cave for providing the
space and remote access support.
Currently we have $9,997.47 in our accounts including the down payment made for the
party. This includes both savings and checking.
A conference call was held on Thursday of this week (7/8/2010). John Attinger would
like to update you on our progress.
John Attinger reported that the website's new platform (vendor) has been narrowed down
to one provider. The committee provided input and suggestions on the three designs being
considered. Webmaster will provide a working version of what was decided upon. It is hoped
that the new website will be live in 2-3 months.
The September meeting will be held at Sullivan & Cromwell, 125 Broad Street. Topic to
Alan Fricke announced that the Summer party will be held at The Terrace Club. This is
located at Rockefeller Center in Midtown. It will be held on August 12, and takes place from
6:00pm until 9:00pm. Invitations have been sent. Please make your reservations ASAP.
Currently about 15 people have registered. Nia Lourekas (membership chair) is here today if
you wish to pay. She will accept cash and provide a receipt.
Alan thanked Roberta Gelb and Carol Gerber of the Programs and Events Committee for
coordinating and organizing today's meeting. He went on to say that Macro Packages enable our
proficiency at creating documents. In the past few days we have been able, via webinars, to take
a look at 3 different applications of this type (Litera Innova, Legal MacPac and Payne
Numbering and Forms Assistants). Today, we have representatives from our various PLTG
member firms who will describe how the application was customized and is used in their
environments. Should there be any questions, we have representatives from each of the vendors
to supply answers.
Alan introduced Carol Gerber as the moderator of today's meeting and congratulated her
on her July 10 birthday which was celebrated with a cupcake complete with candle. Carol
announced that her wish was for clear crisp weather for the August party.
Bill Robertson represented Litera.
Anthony Torello, Desktop Engineer - Proskauer Rose, spoke about implementing Innova
in a large firm with Word 2003.
When he became involved in managing the Innova installation he was given information
on the current (at the time) installation which was basically all customized and written in
undocumented VBA coding by a consultant. Over time, the control file had grown and grown.
One of the first changes he was asked to make was to change an office address. Innova had a
simple standard way to implement this change, but the consultant had achieved it another way
using customized code. At that point it was decided to work with clean installation and work
from the bottom up. A significant investment in time was invested to train an administrator and
backup. Templates are structured by document type with office location subtype. Consulting
partner used as mentor for guidance. There are approximately 55 templates. Partial replication
is run nightly. Full replication when major changes made.
There are three types of changes:
1. Office specific: Field office has unique blurb to insert or template layout.
Change is made, office signs off. Templates downloaded only if new or
2. Functionality change: Department manager or user. Users may request
change that works with their best practices for their department. Change
request is presented and reviewed.
3. Individual change: Change that comes directly to help desk from user.
These are the most difficult and often denied.
Several templates were demonstrated and the importance of understanding the
administrative end of Innova was stressed.
Teresa Evanosky, Meyer, Suozzi, English & Klein, P.C., spoke about Innova
implementation at a mid-size firm with Word 2003.
In 2004 the firm migrated from WordPerfect to Word. It was decided that the macro and
numbering product selected had to be user friendly and easy for users to learn and something that
she had to be able to administer herself. Innova was chosen and structured to fit the way the firm
works. Templates are structured by practice group. Firm has very complex letterhead. Was
easy to achieve in Innova. Firm has over 150 templates.
Demonstrated WET (Wills Estates & Trusts) durable power of attorney form template.
Was able to easily customize and automate using Innova’s dialog designer.
Payne Forms Assistant and Numbering Assistant
Tara Byers represented Payne
Zenith Murrell-Brown, Desktop Applications, Simpson, Thatcher, spoke about how the
Numbering Assistant and Forms Assistant have been implemented and are used at Simpson with
At Simpson, templates are kept simple. There are 20 standard templates. On Word's
"File New" a document is launched containing a text message directing users access and use
templates to create new document. Favorite templates can be dropped to favorites folder.
Requests for modifications are generally denied. Front end profiling encourages users to
save documents. Input form is linked to personal Outlook Contacts and to firm personnel lists.
Template commands can be accessed from document action pane which enables changes such as
date format and relaunch of input form to modify or add additional input data, e.g., recipients.
Recycle document is a feature that takes text from document and drops it into new
container based on selected template. Payne maintains a replica of firm build at their office and
is very proactive when changes are required. They provide a spreadsheet which can be used to
audit and maintain changes history.
Ten default numbering schemes are available. Names are kept generic (scheme one,
scheme two, etc.) so that users are not dissuaded from using as they were when names were city,
office or practice group specific. Other than a style separator button which was added Simpson's
Payne installation has very little firm customization. Users are encouraged to create and save
their own customizations which are stored in and retrieved from user profiles.
Linda Sackett represented Legal MacPac
Donna Stanziola, Trainer, Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP, spoke about how
Legal MacPac was implemented and is used at Cleary and how it will be incorporated and
trained in the firm's upcoming upgrade.
Cleary is in process of migrating from Office 2000 to Office 2007. Cleary did due
diligence to determine what users need from a template and macro package. Managers of all
departments were surveyed to determine what specific template and numbering needs for that
department were. They were asked to make a list of features that they use on a regular basis.
A demo script was created from the users' lists of features and each vendor was brought
in to present to an evaluation committee based on the same demo script. MacPac was able meet
all of the firm's needs and demands.
Environment includes 65 pleadings for 18 states.
Related documents can be appended from within document (Pleadings appended with
certificates of service, letters with fax cover sheets, etc.).
Individual user preferences can be saved for each and are synchronized on the network so
that any time a document is created for that user, their default preferences are used.
To All vendors: What if SQL server goes down?
Litera – Innova has mobile mode. When disconnected from network you will
have 100% functionality with product via either local SQL or Access (MDB) database.
MacPac – Only 5% of functionality relies on SQL
Payne – Only 5% of functionality relies on SQL
To Zenith Murrell-Brown: – Has template standardization limited Word calls to help
Majority of Word calls are functionality related and not related to
templates or requests for template customization.
To All vendors: Is TOC hyperlinking back to document available?
Yes. An administrative setting makes this available in all three
To Cleary and Simpson speakers (Firms that don’t have specific Real Estate or Trust
and Estate templates): Aren’t those departments "ripe" for templates?
Although MacPac has full document assembly capabilities (which
were not demoed today), Cleary uses HotDocs for wills and Real
General consensus among vendors & speakers was that the next
wave of template and document automation will be to move into
Bryan Cave was thanked for hosting as were all speakers and vendors.