HotDocs Tips – Importing from Outlook

HotDocs has for years had a connector to Microsoft Outlook.  It is an effective tool for importing data.  However, the data that comes in, often needs to be “cleaned up” before it can be used.

Working with Outlook

  • State Field: The state can sometimes be entered as Abbreviated (e.g. NY) or as a Full State (“New York”) which causes problems on import if you importing into a Multiple Choice field
  • Street Field:  The “Address” in Outlook is different from the BusinessAddressStreet field.  And that field can have multiple lines in it, affecting how that text appears in your template where you may have coded Street1 and Street2

Further, some of the mappings in the tool are confusing because of the terminology used by Outlook and that used by most HotDocs coders can be quite different.

  • Which Address:  In Outlook there is a MailingAddress, a HomeAddress and a BusinessAddress.  If you are importing into a primary address, then you would choose MailingAddress.  If it is a Business, with a Company, you should use Business Address.
  • Salutation, Title and Job Title:  These fields are confusing since Title is “Mr.” or “Mrs”, Saluation is non-existent, and JobTitle is the positon someone holds at a company.

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Inbox backwards – XOBONI – The Ultimate Exchange Addon

If you use OUTLOOK or EXCHANGE, you must get XOBNI.  That is inbox backwards.  And it works that way.  It turns your inbox upside down.  From a morass of emails and other crap, XOBNI brings order.  And it does this without you providing any organizing principle.  No need for folders and rules etc.  Rather, there is a simple search box.  It indexes your inbox.  It creates profiles of all your senders and recipients.  It pulls their data automatically from LinkedIn, Twitter, Hoovers, Facebook and other social networking services.  It shows the relationships between that person and ALL your other contacts.  It takes your emails and threads them together in conversations (remember GMAIL).  And it exposes and makes searchable ALL attached documents.

So what is the cost … well FREE.  The free version should be adequate for most people.  For $35 you get a little more.  If you are looking for a needle in a haystack, XOBNI is your metal detector.  It sorts the chaff and out comes the needle.  Want to know who knows whom.  Use this handy little sidebar.

Try it.  You’ll like it.

Why does my email inbox take so long to load

When you open your Inbox it may appear to take up to several minutes to load. Time Matters will seem like it is not responding.  Time Matters inbox is “personal” to each user. The inbox contains both Internet Email and Time Matters emails, as well as attachments. The mailbox can quick get overloaded, even when you appear to have been keeping the list of items in your inbox to a manageable roar. In fact, your mailbox is most likely overloaded. There could be hundreds of emails in the Deleted Items folder. There could be emails in subfolders. All take time to load.

The solution lies in regular dilligence on managing your inbox.

  • Keep the number of items in your inbox folder to under 50
  • Set your mailbox settings to show on email list (not inbox) any records that have been associated with a Contact or Matter
  • Create a folder for List-Server mail and set a rule to automatically move the incoming email to that folder
  • Empty the deleted items folder (right-click on folder and choose empy bin)