The new LawPracticeZA interface was launched last month, incorporating many improvements and enhancements. Since the launch there have been ongoing enhancements and improvements.
Two of the most exciting enhancements for Fee Earners are the dashboard and diarising.
A Pie Chart shows the number of your Matters that are Due (diarised for today), overdue or due in future. Click on a segment and you are taken to a list of the Matters, with diary dates and notes, where you can drill-down into the Matter. Here you can view the Client and Matter details, diarise the Matter, update the Matter or Client details, view the transactions details or perform a number of other operations relating to the Matter, such as capturing fees, producing a proforma invoice or generating an invoice and optionally emailing your client, and more.
We are busy adding a new graph, to the right of the Pie Char. This chart will show the value of fees captured (ex VAT) for this month, against last month, and against your target for the month.
Scroll down the dashboard and you will see how much is held in trust by the firm, the number of invoices that have been generated but not emailed to your clients by LawPracticeZA and the number of draft invoices.
Click on unsent invoices and you will be presented with a list (checked by default), with an option to Send (in bulk). You can also click on an individual invoice (number) to view the invoice, where you will be given various options relating to the selected invoice.
Click on Draft Invoices to take you to a list of invoices containing unbilled fees and/or pending disbursements, with options to either send proformas or generate and send invoices for the selected items. You can also drill down into a Matter.
At the bottom of the dashboard are some useful resources; an Overview of LawPracticeZA (a brief description of the functionality provided by LawPracticeZA), the Knowledge base, where you can find answers to specific questions relating to the operation of LawPracticeZA and News, which contains articles such as this, and others relating to law firms.
The diarising function has been greatly enhanced. Use to manage all Client's Matters in your law firm extremely efficiently and effectively. To summarise, the functionality you should be aware of: -
You can make multiple diary entries for a Matter, which can be assigned to either yourself, your assistant or a colleague, and which can contain attachments (documents, voice recordings, etc).
Because there can be multiple diary entries, an entry must be deleted when complete. This can be done  In the Matter, by clicking the Bin (remove / delete entry),  In the calendar, by clicking the tick in the circle. It will change to two ticks (to indicate complete); click again to revive (single tick). Note that completed diary entries remain in the Calendar, as a history of what was diarised and noted.
In the Calendar, hover over the note to pop up the full note. In a Matter, you can edit an existing diary entry; change date, note, etc. In the Calendar monthly view  You can change a diary date by dragging the Matter to a different date,  Click in a date outside of a Matter to change to daily view for that day (can also select Monthly, Weekly or Daily view from menu).
In daily view, you can drag and drop to a different time, also drag the bottom of the block to expand / contract time.
In your diary, you will see diary entries assigned to yourself as well as diary entries you have assigned to your assistant (obviously also in your assistants diary).
You can view your assistants diary in the Calendar.
There have been many enhancements to the bookkeeping modules, including, but not limited to
- The inclusion of 'As at' and date ranges for reports, where appropriate. This enables the bookkeeper to extract reports from previous financial periods at any time.
- Trust Transfers now also has an 'As at' date option, where the module will evaluate the status of all accounts as at the date, and transfer accordingly. All transfer reports are saved by date, and can be individually recalled (option in Reports).
- The search has been standardised and introduced for all Matter, Supplier or General Ledger account searches. After typing any 2 characters, all matching accounts will be shown instantly.
- Because there are a lot of Bookkeeper menu options, use the menu filter to quickly find the one you are looking for. For example, type 'jou' for Journal Entries.
- Additional posting modules have been added to simplify posting and make it more efficient.
- Improved options for automatically reversing transactions, where LawPracticeZA generates valid accounting entries to maintain the integrity of your accounting data. Remember that every accounting transaction recorded by LawPracticeZA appears in the Audit Trail, which can be viewed within a date range and has a filter to quickly find any transaction posted (you can enter an amount or any text that is part of the transaction, such as an invoice number, 'receipt' or 'vat').