Smart Timers

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Fee or time transactions can also be entered by choosing the SMART TIMERS Button from the ORION Desktop Program Group Task Bar. Smart Timers are an easy and powerful way to keep track of time spent performing any task or activity Client related (i.e. phone calls, drafting/reviewing e-mail messages or on-line research). The SMART TIMER Manager is a floating window that organizes individual timers into a single view which is set to “Stay on top” of other windows and applications. Smart Timers will help you capture billable time that may not have been noted otherwise.

Smart Timer Button



Adding Smart Timers

To add a Smart Timer, choose the SMART TIMER Button from the ORION Desktop Program Group Task Bar. The following screen will appear:



If at any time you would like to add a new Smart Timer, select the INSERT key or choose the NEW Button. Following are details on each of the fields to be completed on this screen.

The Client-Matter field is used to identify the Client-Matter. Enter the Client and Matter number for the Smart Timer you are entering. If you do not know the correct number, you may use the F8 Look-Up Function or click the LOOK-UP Button.  When you are in the Description field, you can increase entry speed with appending other Activity Code descriptions to the text by entering the Activity Code and striking the F3 key.


Starting and Stopping Smart Timers

A timer can be started, stopped or reset by using buttons located on the toolbar of either the SMART TIMER or SMART TIMER Manager. To start a timer from the SMART TIMER Manager, place a check mark in the first column. The timer will change from red to green and the TIME will begin to increment. To stop the timer from the SMART TIMER Manager, remove the check mark from the first column. The timer will change from green to red and TIME will stop incrementing.  If a SMART TIMER is running when an attempt is made to either close ORION 5.x or to shut down the PC, an information message will appear providing options to either stop the SMART TIMER or to allow it to continue running. If the SMART TIMER is stopped, it is saved and can be accessed again after restarting the application. If the SMART TIMER is allowed to continue to run, it is saved along with the amount of time that has accrued. Once the application is restarted, each SMART TIMER that was running is updated with the time that has accrued since shutdown and will be restarted. In addition, the SMART TIMER MANAGER will appear with an indicator that there are ACTIVE TIMERS.


Resetting Smart Timers

A timer can be reset by using the RESET Button located on the toolbar of either the SMART TIMER or SMART TIMER Manager.


Removing Smart Timers

A timer can be removed by using the REMOVE Button located on the toolbar of either the SMART TIMER or SMART TIMER Manager.


Creating a Fee from a Smart Timer

A fee can be created from a SMART TIMER by choosing the BILL TIME Button located on the toolbar of either the SMART TIMER or SMART TIMER Manager. Once this option has been selected, a new fee transaction will be created with the DATE, CLIENT-MATTER, TIMEKEEPER, TIME and DESCRIPTION completed by the information contained in the SMART TIMER but may be edited prior to saving the fee. Once the fee transaction has been saved, ORION will update the FEE column with a check mark. If the BILL TIME Button is chosen for a timer where the FEE column contains a check mark, then you will have the option to either ADD or REPLACE time in the existing fee transaction or create a NEW fee.  NOTE: When creating or updating an existing Fee from a timer, Time will be rounded based on your firm’s default settings (tenths or hundredths) using the 4/5th rounding rule.


Setting Options for Smart Timers

Options are accessed by using the Options Button from the toolbar. These options are intended to provide you with customized views (the way in which information is displayed) and behavior. To enable an option, select the item from the drop-down menu. It will now have a check mark to the left of the field name. When you choose Options, the following screen will appear:


Options Description

Allow Multiple Active Timers

ORION allows you to have more than one timer run at the same time. When this option is disabled, any active timers (timers that are running) will stop when another timer is started.

Reset Clears Notes

This option will clear the Notes field (timer description) when the RESET Button from the toolbar is selected.

Minimize to the Windows System Tray

This option, when enabled, will force the SMART TIMER Manager to only be accessible from the Windows System Tray via the Orion icon. When disabled, if the SMART TIMER Manager is “minimized” it will appear in the Windows Task Bar instead.

Show Notes as Preview Line

The Notes associated with a timer can be displayed in the SMART TIMER Manager by selecting this option. Otherwise, to view the Notes (timer description), you will need to open the timer.

Word Wrap Preview Line

When used in conjunction with the Show Notes as Preview Line, this will allow the full text to be viewed from the SMART TIMER Manager. Otherwise, only the first line will show.

Field Chooser

By default, the TIME, CLIENT-MATTER, CLIENT NAME, MATTER NAME and FEE status flag is displayed in the SMART TIMER Manager. You can remove any of these columns by selecting this option and dragging a column to the COLUMNS window. Fields can be added back by dragging a column from the COLUMNS window to the SMART TIMER Manager.

Show Footer

By default, the footer that shows the count of timers (total and active) and the total time accrued from all timers is displayed in the SMART TIMER Manager. You can remove the footer by turning this option off.




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