Nothing Lasts Forever – What Staying Relevant Looks Like
Month after month I’ve been using vConnect as one of the ways I share what’s happening at Vertican. I have written about how I have been scaling the business, developing more streamlined processes, including support incident reconstruction, and using Mean Time To Resolution (MTTR) to measure support success. I’ve even pontificated a bit about the changing workforce and the importance of having a long-term talent acquisition and retention strategy. Most recently, I emphasized how, at Vertican, we have canceled the garbage in, garbage out mindset as we strategically dive into our brand promise of data with integrity. So much change in just 12 months – and that’s not even mentioning COVID.
A lot of companies are out there either blaming or giving COVID credit for the massive changes in the business world, and rightfully so. Pandemics notwithstanding, history reminds us that change is inevitable no matter what.
Here’s what we really have to keep in mind: “Time isn’t the enemy. Fear of change is. Accept that nothing lasts forever, and you’ll start to appreciate the advantages of whatever age you are now.” Oprah Winfrey spoke those words in the context of living. But I think about it also in terms of the life of a company, product, or service.
Unfortunately, those (in our personal lives as well, but I’m speaking specifically to the business world) who fear change are creating a self-fulfilling prophecy, because subconsciously, what they really fear is irrelevance. Whereas, had they confronted their fear of change in the first place, had they planned, left their comfort zone, they would more than likely find themselves staying relevant.
Change hardly ever happens overnight, but it can happen fast, especially in the life of a business. This can either result in your demise or growth. Those are your options.
So, the idea that nothing lasts forever or that all good things come to an end is highly debatable. Sure, most products and companies that existed 30 plus years ago don’t exist today. On the other hand, take the evolution of the Ford Mustang which debuted in 1964. For decades, it has been the benchmark and inspiration for other cars in its category. The Mustang has undergone many transformations since ‘64 and is on the verge of its 7th generation model. How has the Pony car survived for almost 60 years? How has it stayed relevant? Its longevity can be attributed to Ford’s ingenuity and strategic alliances. And even though the Mustang you see on the road today is somewhat unrecognizable from its much earlier generation predecessors, the legendary brand is alive and kicking, and demanding great respect from all its industry counterparts.
Vertican has never once recklessly rested on its laurels. Not only that, but I am also completely enamored with the promise of change. Even our name has changed. From our CLS days up to today, our products have continually evolved. It hasn’t been easy. At times change has been downright painful. But remaining relevant in an industry that is so integral to the world’s financial system, so technologically evolving, and so demanding with regulations and compliance, comes at a cost. There are agonizing decisions at times, there’s listening to and having faith in people who are smarter than me, and there’s always a component of fear. All the while I’m also knowing, there simply is no future if I give into that fear.
This fall we will sunset YGC and migrate all users, Senders, and Receivers to vExchange. My team has invested thousands of hours and years developing vExchange. I’ve known, and the industry has known, for a long time that its future is in the centralization of streamlined processing. We knew we couldn’t simply enhance YGC to meet the needs of the ever-changing industry; so, we built vExchange, a one EDI solution, from the ground up. vExchange incorporates more data than any one system or standard in the entire industry and it is built to scale. In last month’s vConnect, I talked about vExchange’s gate rules and how they’re one of the many ways Vertican will be delivering on its brand promise.
vExchange is not YGC; nor is it an updated model. There was no way we could keep YGC and promise data with integrity at the same time. We couldn’t just go under the hood, tweak it, or give it a facelift and expect it to deliver data with integrity into the financial system. Every single member of the Vertican Technologies team has had to abandon their comfort zone, and work longer and harder than ever before, to make the vExchange vision a reality.
Sunsetting YGC and building vExchange has been a labor of love for our team. It means that Vertican is taking the giant leap forward to make data with integrity a reality every single time clients utilize the platform. So, vExchange represents a significant slice of our mission to raise the industry standard to this monumental, and long-awaited, height.
So, what am I really here to tell you? I’m here to tell you this industry is changing and it’s changing fast. Vertican is working tirelessly to be on the right side of that change. We hope you are there with us.
Have you taken the vExchange challenge in your own professional life? If you want to grow, make a bigger impact, be better, stronger, faster, or cooler (and so on), the magic of that is going to happen somewhere not inside your comfort zone. It’s going to be something different and scary, but also exciting. So, prepare yourself for that or run the serious risk of becoming irrelevant.
P.S. I have a lot say, but I’m a good listener too. So, what do you want to hear about? As a Vertican product user, valued client, and partner, email me if there’s something that you want me to talk about. You’re invited to the conversation: email@example.com.
Intelligent Task Code Buildout in Q-Law and Q-LawE
Task Codes, like Diary Codes in Collection-Master, are crucial for any workflow process in Q-Law and Q-LawE (QL/QLE). The use of only one Task Code for each workflow process in your system is recommended regardless if the Task Code is used for document package generation, attorney reviews, or court filing follow-ups. Keeping your total Task Code list limited makes it easier for end users to add the correct Task when working accounts. It also makes your DDAS (Data Driven Automation System) rules buildout simpler since you are using fewer total Task Codes in the system. Let’s explore the different tools available for making your individual Task Codes as versatile as possible.
The Document-Linking feature in QL/QLE allows one Task Code to merge the required Word document templates based on the criteria of venue, balance, type of claim, and judge. For example, by using Document-Linking, the same Task that merges a state-wide cover sheet can also be programmed to pull a court-specific cover sheet if the court assigned to the case requires one.
DDASDOCS is a greatly underutilized tool in QL/QLE and should be explored if your firm is currently not using it. DDASDOCS can achieve the same desired outcome as Document-Linking but is even more customizable. DDASDOCS can factor in criteria not included in Document-Linking such as Forwarder, available supporting media, and purchased debt requirements if applicable. Document-Linking is also limited to Word template selections whereas DDASDOCS can also be used for attaching conditional media and exhibits to your packages. For example, DDASDOCS can be programmed to pull an activity statement or a monthly statement in its place if no activity statement is available on the account.
Both the WorkNow and AMR (Attorney Meaningful Review) modules in Q-LawE support the use of one Task Code for a certain type of review regardless of criteria such as state, client, available media, and type of claim. Both allow your firm to correctly delegate which accounts should be worked by which end users. For example, the same ATTYSUITRV Task can be used for the attorney meaningful review (AMR) of ANY suit package prior to it being filed with the court. The same applies to WorkNow where one Task can be used as the follow-up regardless of state.
While the WorkNow and AMR modules present additional opportunities for Q-LawE users, all Q-Law and Q-LawE users should take advantage of Document-Linking and DDASDOCS to realize the full power of Task Codes.
Contributed by Will Higginbotham, Business Systems Analyst
Q-LawE's Integration with ProVest
This month, we’re partnering with ProVest, a leading national process server, to inform our readers on the benefits of our software integration. Q-LawE offers automated integration to facilitate a smooth connection between law offices and ProVest. Learn how it works and why, if you don’t already have this integration, you need it.
Who is ProVest?
ProVest plays a critical role in the legal process by ensuring that defendants in a legal action have been properly served process. They specialize in managing the service of process related
to creditors’ rights and mortgage defaults. Today, ProVest has served millions of documents for the country’s most notable law firms, financial institutions, and insurance companies. The industries supported require a process server to be knowledgeable about consumer rights and consumer laws. As a result of their specialty in this industry, they play a vital role in ensuring the consumer is protected and informed. ProVest is technologically advanced and equipped to partner with Vertican on the integration with Q-LawE.
We checked in with Kurt Sund, Product Owner and creator of Q-Law and Q-LawE, to learn how he thinks this integration is essential for our client’s success. Here’s what he had to say:
What is the biggest recent accomplishment in Q-LawE development?
We have built extensive integration in Q-LawE with ProVest to support the entire process service cycle. ProVest is one of the most highly reputable process service companies in the US, with more than 2,000 process servers nationwide. This is a big deal because being able to automate almost every part of this process is a significant time saving for our clients’ operation. We are talking about 45-60 minutes saving per lawsuit in our client’s workflow. Imagine if a firm files 2,000 suits each month, this is no less than 1,500 man-hours, easily eight or more full time employees.
Okay, you got my attention. Tell me more about what this integration is.
First, we focus our integration on the most basic needs: suit filing and process service requests.
When cases are readied for suit filing, Q-LawE will compile all necessary data into a placement file, along with all suit document packages, to send electronically to ProVest as request for service. Q-LawE has built-in task management that includes DDAS (Data Driven Automation System, our business-rule engine), Job Scheduler and built-in FTP, automating the entire process.
The integration doesn’t stop at placement. After placing a service request, the integration will continuously receive periodical updates from the ProVest system. This includes status updates, service attempts success/failure, suit filing status, suit case number, hearing dates, any documents or affidavits, and data will flow back to Q-LawE. Based on rules set up in DDAS, Q- LawE will process this information to move the case forward in the workflow.
The benefits of this automation encompass:
Credit Card Reconciliation
Automated Document Exchange
This must be what you were referring to, time savings in the workflow process.
Yes. Imagine what it was like before automation. There was a designated individual using a web portal to key data and place service orders. They would routinely go on the ProVest portal to research for updates and manually input new information into Q-LawE. Our law firm clients could easily spend 30-45 minutes per claim just to maintain the information flow, not to mention any potential human error in the data entry process.
Are there any other worthwhile benefits from the integration?
From the accounting front, the integration with ProVest includes the transfer of suit invoices and process service invoices. Once Q-LawE imports these invoices, it flows right into the cases’ cost accounting ledger. This is another huge time-saver for managing all the cases’ costs.
Are there any future plans to enhance this integration?
Absolutely. Currently, our integration only supports the suit filing process. However, we have plans in place to expand support for both wage and bank garnishment in the near future.
Any last words for our clients?
We’re excited to focus the newsletter on our integration with ProVest. It’s important to keep our clients in the loop on time-saving measures and the future of automation. We want to make sure the spread of knowledge doesn’t stop with an article, to learn more on the integration shoot our Client Success department an email!
Mastermind Training Series continues on July 14th
The Mastermind Series, an ongoing program of virtual training sessions presented by Vertican’s top developers and Subject Matter Experts (SMEs), has been well underway! Are you missing out?
Topics are developed to help improve clients’ ability to use our platform features and tools effectively and maximize efficiency. Here’s a glimpse at our upcoming sessions:
July 14 | vExchange Dashboard 101
July 21 | Call Screen Q-Law and Q-LawE
Attendance is complimentary but advanced registration is required. The calendar is continuously updated; to learn more on these and other training sessions being offered, click here.
Take advantage of this exceptional opportunity to learn directly from industry trailblazers and Vertican’s visionary developers.
Missed some of our past Mastermind Sessions? All is not lost. You can view any of our past sessions presentations here.
We’re looking forward our trip to Stowe, Vermont for the Executive Summit 2021, August 2-4.
Planning to attend? Schedule time to meet and catch up with Isaac Goldman, CEO, and Nicholas Arcaro, SVP of Sales by clicking here.
Welcome to the section of the Newsletter where we share an inside look at some of Vertican’s amazing team members. This issue of vConnect focuses the spotlight on Caitland Harper and David Katusa.
Caitland’s key role with Vertican Technologies is as a Business System Analyst. We talked with her about her work at Vertican, as well as her skating experience (longboard and skates)! .
How long have you worked for Vertican? I’ve been with Vertican for about 10 months.
What sort of work did you do before joining Vertican? I previously worked for two different VT/Q-Law clients dating back to 2015, one of which I am now their designated Business Systems Analyst (BSA)! Prior to that, I was the office manager for a hurricane impact window and door manufacturer. At one point, I lived a less than conventional life as a stewardess on a 150’ mega yacht (yes, it was as chaotic as shown on ‘Below Deck’).
What is a typical day at Vertican like for you? Emailing with clients, meetings with various Vertican teams, meetings with clients, meetings with my snack drawer, researching client issues and testing them, updating tickets, and singing along (loudly and terribly) to whatever songs my poor Spotify algorithm finds for me that day (between all those previously mentioned meetings, of course)!
What do you like most about working for Vertican? I have read all our Vertican Spotlights, and everyone answers this question the same: our coworkers because it is 100% true. We have a phenomenal team. Even on the tough days, they will have me cackling while offering each other help at every turn. I also love tinkering with difficult issues until we find a solution and ultimately get that “Thank you!!!!!!” from a client. It is immensely rewarding working with and for such great people.
If you could learn anything new, what would it be? I would love to learn to fly. There is something so serene about being up in the clouds while also having the proficiency and responsibility to control such a machine and that is incredibly fascinating to me.
What was your very first job and how old were you? I was an assistant at a hair salon when I was 15 years old.
Word on the street is you can juggle? Tell us about it and how that began. My parents signed me up for baton twirling lessons when I was four and I did that competitively until I was a freshman in college. I may have juggled some oranges at our last virtual VT happy hour.
What is something about you that may surprise your colleagues? My colleagues? Probably not much because I am a chatterbox, but I am in a chess club with a bunch of retired men who I can only assume are true feminists because they have never let me win, ever, not even once.
What (else) do you like to do outside of work? You can usually find me at the pool with my kids, skating on my longboard or roller skates around Palm Beach, or sitting on my sofa playing Scrabble on my phone.
Share something exciting you did in the last 12 months. I bought a pair of roller skates and started jam skating lessons, because why not break a leg in your mid-thirties?
Do you have a favorite movie, artist and/or book?
Movie: Inception and Forgetting Sarah Marshall
TV: It’s a new one but I am going with it – Ted Lasso.
Musical Artists: Novo Amor, Yoste, Florence + The Machine, The Holdup, and obviously, Taylor Swift.
Book: So many, we will go with authors instead: J. R. R. Tolkien, Chuck Palahniuk, Ernest Hemingway, Theodore Roosevelt, and (while rueful to admit) YA fantasy fiction novelist Sarah J. Maas.
David’s key role with Vertican Technologies is as a Project Manager. We talked with him baseball, customized sneakers, and Vincent van Gogh (a vConnect first).
How long have you worked for Vertican? I’ve been with VT for 16 months total (that’s four months as contractor, and 12 months as full-time)
What sort of work did you do before joined Vertican? I worked at Verizon for about 11 years as both an intern and as a full-time employee in four different roles. My roles ranged from Pre-launch Device Test Engineer, Post-launch Network/Device Engineer, Network Implementation Project/Program Manager, and Network Services Project/Program Manager.
What is a typical day at Vertican like for you? Currently each day is filled with meetings, ranging from projects related to onboarding/testing with firms, the Total Migration to Azure (TM2A) program, and some high-level process improvement implementations. Whether it be Zoom calls, JIRA (our project management platform) updates, email chains, etc., there are many different challenges over time.
What do you like most about working for Vertican? Leadership cares for employees like human beings, treating us all well. Management is also flexible, not stressing simply for a “9-5” schedule but having a larger focus on getting things done.
If you could learn anything new, what would it be? I would learn how to properly sing! I can carry a tune okay, but actual tone shaping, techniques, and mechanics are unknown to me.
What was your very first job and how old were you? My very first real job was as an intern at Verizon Wireless in their Network Operations Control Center (NOCC) when I was 18 years old. Prior to that, the only activity I made money (a few times) was when I umpired at the local Little League; I was 13.
Word on the street is you play baseball. Tell us about it and how that began. I started playing baseball when I was six years old. I played through high school, college for four years, and still play in men’s leagues with the intent to play until I am physically unable to (that goes for golf and skiing too!).
What is something about you that may surprise your colleagues? While some know I play baseball , and some know I can play and record music, not many know I can paint. While I don’t do it often, I enjoy replicating Vincent van Gogh’s works in interesting ways. I’ve made a red version of Starry Night (red is my favorite color), and have also customized sneakers, painting starry night onto a pair of Nike sneakers.
What (else) do you like to do outside of work? I play, write, record music, play sports (baseball, softball, ski, golf), overall outdoor activities (sports, riding my bike, camping, beach), cook/eat, hang with my pup, and travel…to name a few. Boredom is never an option for me!
Share something exciting you did in the last 12 months. Usually, my year is filled with more trips and vacations (dang COVID!), but one exciting thing is that I went skiing in Vermont .
Do you have a favorite movie, artist and/or book?
Movie: The Wolf of Wall Street; 1990’s comedies (Jim Carrey, Adam Sandler films)
TV: The Office
Music: Eminem; Green Day; mixed pop; 1990’s – 2010’s hip hop; pop punk
Book: Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert T. Kiyosaki
Please share a favorite quote.
“Play the game straight.” – My grandfather
The Collection-Master Dashboard offers multiple shortcuts to provide quick access to different options in the software. For example, pressing the letter S on your keypad will bring up the claim search, you can also use the menu path 1-4. Pending WordPerfect Documents that are to be merged can be viewed the Word Processing section. You also have options to view any Recent Activity and/or pending Documents from the quick access tabs.
Click on image to view larger version.
Icons and Buttons – Allow shortcuts to frequently visited areas throughout Collection-Master. To access the Full Main Menu from the Home scree, click on the Tree icon. You can also access a shortcut by pressing the letter F to pull up the Full Main Menu. The Full Main Menu will soon be retired as the default menu option.
Click on image to view larger version.
Click on image to view larger version.
It is recommended to use the Dashboard as your primary screen as we have some new and exciting features. You can change the default Menu by navigating to [4-1-S-2-2] this will bring you to the Personal Options section. From there you can go to the Operations Tab to select the menu drop down and change your Menu Type to Dashboard.
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We’re very excited to show off some of the upcoming features for the Collection-Master Dashboard.
Bulletins – A user-defined section that can display internal firm messages for users. Collection goals, birthday wishes, team accomplishments etc., can be displayed here. The path to the edit Bulleting Message is – F:\CLSINC\CUSTOM\FIRMNOTE.TXT
Client Communication in App Messaging (CCAM) – This area will display upcoming events from Vertican such as the new Mastermind series or other important messages for users.
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By default all users will be able to select the CCAM URL.
This can be restricted by setting the policy ADM:LAUNCH CM – Allow:User to launch CCAM URL to N for the security groups that should not be able to click the link.
Batch Close Accounts in Q-LawE
Did you know that you can batch close accounts in Q-LawE via Job Scheduler? A new procedure called CloseBatch can be called from Job Scheduler. It uses the following parameters (see example job setup below).
Taskset Code – String (required)
Start Date – date (optional: defaults to today;s date)
End Date – date (optional: defaults to today;s date)
CloseTasks – boolian (optional: defaults to false)
Example 1: do CloseBatch with ‘CLOSE’
Example 2: do CloseBatch with ‘CLOSE’, date()-7, date(), .t.
The system will find all tasks within the taskset and then close the account while processing the tasks.
If the CloseTasks is set to true, it will close additional tasks on the ourfile.
The process generates a log called CloseBatchLogs.txt in .logs where it records everything that happened.
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July 2021 Contest
Can you answer this month’s quiz?
This month we’re focusing vTrivia on our integration with ProVest. Have you read the Product Story? If so, we want to make sure you really read it. Here are a few questions to jog your memory. Three winners will be chosen at random from everyone answering all four questions correctly.
1. What does ProVest do?
2. List three benefits of ProVest interface automation?
3. List any periodical update that is taken from the ProVest system and flowed back to Q-LawE?
4. How many process servers does ProVest have nationwide?
This contest has ended. Please check the August 2021 vConnect newsletter for the winners.
This month's prizes
Apple Watch Series 3
Silver Aluminum Case with 38mm White Sport Band or Space Gray Aluminum Case with 38mm Black Sports Band.
Winc.com Three-Month Subscription
Merlot, chardonnay, or rosé, your choice
Mobile Pixels Trio Portable Monitor for Laptops
12.5” Full HD IPS Screens, USB C/USB A Dual or Triple Displays, Windows/ OS/ Android/ Nintendo Switch
June 2021 Winners
Congratulations to the winners of the June contest!
Susan Jumonville, D’Aquila, Contreras & Vega, APLC
Maggie Lee, Lee Law Office
Matt Spayde, Levy & Associates LLC
The answers to the June trivia questions:
1. June 25th is National [fill in the blank] Day.
Bring Your Dog to Work Day, LEON Day, Anthony Bourdain Day, Catfish Day, and Work From Home Day (2021 only) were all accepted.
2. What is June 19, 1865 referred to as?
3. What year was June declared LGBT Pride month?
1999 and 2009 were both accepted
4. The first Father’s day took place on (MM/DD/YYYY)?
The winners had the choice of one of these three prizes: