Faster Snippets: Expanding Text, Populating Clio Fields, and Adding Variables

Modified on Fri, 19 May 2023 at 06:18 PM

Faster Lawcademy: Video Tutorial 5.1.3
The following is a video tutorial.  For the best experience, click the "Full Screen" button while watching this video.


Type Text Functionality

One of the primary features of Faster Snippets is the ability to expand text.  This video will cover how to more effectively expand static text, populate Clio information, and use custom variables to make your snippets work exactly how you want them to.

Let’s open our snippet editor by going to Faster Suite on the Faster Ribbon, clicking the settings wheel, then going to Text Snippets on the left and Custom Libraries across the top.  We’ll click the pencil icon to open our editor.

Expanding Static Text

Now we’ll create a new snippet for expanding static text.  We can call this snippet "Telephonic conference with client" and make the abbreviation "/tcwc".  We could delete the default action and add a Type Text action, but the default action actually is a Type Text action so in this case we can just delete the content of the action and enter our own.

The snippet we're creating is intended to type "Telephonic conference with client" when we type the abbreviation, so we’ll just enter that text into this field.  We can test this by clicking Save on the snippet editor, clicking Save again on the settings window, and typing the abbreviation into any application on our computer.  Notice that we didn’t get a matter prompt for this snippet because we aren’t entering any matter specific information from Clio.

Populating Information from Clio

Now let’s go back to our snippet editor and configure a snippet that will expand static text, but also enter some Clio information.

We can create a new snippet, but this time let’s enter Greeting as the description and use /hi as the abbreviation.  This abbreviation will be intended to type Hello followed by the client’s first and last name.

We’ll type Hello as static text and then find the client name tag in the Clio fields on the right.  We’ll cover how to find fields in a later video, but for now we can just expand the Matter folder, then the Client folder, and double-click the Name field to copy it to our clipboard and paste it into the Type Text field.  We’ll make sure we have a space between the word Hello and the Clio tag so Faster Snippets knows to separate the words.

We can save again and type our abbreviation to test our new snippet.  This time the snippet window will pop up and we can choose the matter we’re activating the snippet for.  Once we select a matter, we’ll see the client's name appear in the preview of the snippet, and clicking OK will expand the text and enter their name.

Customizable Variables

Now let’s try something new.  We’ll go back to our snippet editor and change our greeting a little bit.

Instead of using first and last name, we might want to use the client’s honorific and their last name.  Let’s first find the last name tag in our Clio tags and replace the current tag.  Now depending on the client’s gender and status, we may need to use different words here like Mr. or Mrs.  If we don’t store this information in Clio, then we can’t use Clio tags.  For anything like this that doesn’t exist in Clio but would change in different situations, we can create a custom variable.

To do this, we can enter any text we want between two curly brackets.  We can reuse the same variable by using the same text between curly brackets in multiple places in the snippet.

Let’s hit Save and see how this variable will work.  When we type the abbreviation, we will be prompted to select a matter.  When we select a matter we will see the client's last name appear in the snippet.  If we look to the right side of the snippet window, we’ll see a text box for any variables we use in the snippet.  Typing anything in this field will populate that information into the snippet anywhere we used that variable.  We’ll enter the client's honorific and hit OK to see the information populate as expected.

By combining these three ideas, we can create snippets that will expand into any amount of custom text filled with Clio information to completely automate anything that we would normally have to type over and over again.

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