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Archive for September, 2012

September 30, 2012

Today Acrobat Goes to “11”

October 1 marks a major milestone for the Adobe Acrobat business. We’re launching Adobe Acrobat XI. Acrobat XI software with cloud services is a powerful new solution that rises to today’s complex document challenges for creating, consuming, sharing and securing PDF content across devices and platforms.

We’ve added several much-asked-for features that are aimed at making life easier for information workers like you. Acrobat XI features complete PDF editing and export to PowerPoint; touch-friendly capabilities on tablets; sophisticated web contracting with Adobe EchoSign; and forms creation, data collection and analysis with Adobe FormsCentral.

We’ve added features IT people have asked for, too:  seamless Microsoft Office and SharePoint integration, easy deployment, applications virtualization and robust application security to provide a low cost of ownership and sound return on investment.

The new Acrobat XI family includes Acrobat XI, Adobe Reader XI and newly integrated document services, Adobe FormsCentral and Adobe EchoSign.

It’s About Productivity

The explosion of digital documents in the workplace has created new challenges for productivity.  With Acrobat XI we’re taking on the issues that are dragging down individual and organizational productivity.

Each week, individual information workers spend half their time searching, filing, organizing, merging and editing comments, obtaining signatures, reviewing feedback and consolidating data, or collaborating with people outside their organizations. IT departments struggle with integrating and managing a diversity of platforms, devices and services, while trying to protect sensitive corporate IP and personal information.

Information workers are asking:  “How do I do what I was doing before, but work in this new environment?”

And organizations of all types are faced with adapting to this complexity, while driving their businesses forward, wondering: “How do I accelerate revenue, secure my IP and continue to evolve my workers capabilities to meet these new challenges?”

These productivity, collaboration, device and security issues have a significant impact on organizations. We’re calling this the Document Productivity Gap. The key to closing the gap is to recognize  that it is a set of compounding issues, multiple, little things that add up to have a big impact.

We asked IDC to take a closer look at these inefficiencies and the impact document-based challenges have on information workers and IT professionals.  One finding startled me. According to a recent global IDC white paper, sponsored by Adobe, the addressable impact of these inefficiencies on an organization of 1,000 employees is almost $16 million annually.  And those are the addressable gaps – not theoretical nirvana that is impossible to reach, but very realistic, tangible gaps that can be closed today. For example, if we could bridge the gap we could add 21.3 percent to an organization’s resources – or the equivalent of 213 employees for every 1,000 people at an organization.  Even if we recover just half of this productivity loss, it could equal hiring close to 100 new employees for a 1,000 person organization.  Imagine the impact of 100 new engineers, salespeople, marketers or IT professionals?

What “11” Means: Customers Weigh In

With the new release, we have made significant innovations across the desktop and the cloud to address the gap.  We wanted to:

  • Enable information workers to unlock PDF content with comprehensive tools for both editing and content reuse.
  • Accelerate document exchange using PDF and the web, forms data collection, review, approvals and eSignatures.
  • Empower employees to be productive on the go with PDF on tablets and smartphones.
  • Mitigate risk and lower IT costs with the most advanced document and application security.

It looks like we’ve succeeded. Acrobat XI has gotten high marks from customers that were in our beta program. These customers are typical of those dealing with the gap.

Security is high on the list for many. Mike Mann, release and deployment analyst at tax and finance consultancy, McGladrey, said, “Our client information is sensitive, so document security is critical. Acrobat XI offers advance document protection capabilities that are easier than ever for our staff to uniformly secure documents.”

Bill Lunsford of BBDO Atlanta likes the speed and efficiency he gets with the integrated services, especially EchoSign. “The new EchoSign features within Adobe Acrobat XI will streamline everyday tasks. These days, no one is going to stand at a fax machine to wait for approvals. Being able to electronically sign a PDF on cost estimates for a project will accelerate go-to-market schedules.”

Yvonne Willis, enterprise applications and project manager at Pillsbury Law, echoed that: “Security is the talk of the town. All of our clients expect the highest level of security, from our documents through our applications and IT environment. Acrobat XI provides key security enhancements that support both users and IT professionals.”

Regarding accelerating document exchange, Saul Morse, vice president of multichannel integration, Palio, said, “Acrobat XI now makes it even easier and faster to create PDF forms and to automatically distribute and collect information with new online forms services available within Acrobat XI.”

But BBDO Atlanta’s Lunsford summed up Acrobat XI best: “I leverage the heck out of Adobe Acrobat because I can cut down on the resources and my IT department loves me.”

Today is October 1. Mark it down as the day we close the gap.

Kevin M. Lynch, SVP and GM of Acrobat and Document Services, Adobe

Follow Kevin on Twitter: @LynchKevinM

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6:07 PM Permalink
September 14, 2012

Adobe EchoSign Talks Web Contracting at Dreamforce 2012

In my talks with Adobe EchoSign customers, I hear first hand how our web contracting and eSignature solution is changing the game. Just like video conferencing’s infiltration into business years ago, signing and managing contracts online is becoming second nature to business processes and companies are realizing the benefits.

I’ll be moderating a panel at Salesforce Dreamforce this year titled “Its 2012, Shouldn’t You be Contracting Like it Is?” Experts from Groupon, Electronic Arts, SolarCity and Time Warner Cable will share lessons learned and best practices around web contracting, how their companies have increased ROI in Salesforce and turned their businesses into competitive sales machines using Adobe EchoSign.  Here are the details:

Session: “Its 2012, Shouldn’t You be Contracting Like it Is?”

Date/Time: September 18 from 12:30pm – 1:30pm.

Venue: San Francisco Marriott Marquis

Room: Golden Gate A

Panelists: Groupon, Electronic Arts, Solar City and Time Warner Cable

For more updates on EchoSign at Dreamforce 2012, keep an eye on our blog and the Acrobat, EchoSign and Chatter Twitter handles (#df12).

We’ve entered into a new age of doing business in the cloud and web contracting is playing an important role in accelerating this transformation.

Kevin M. Lynch, SVP and GM, Acrobat and Document Services, Adobe

Twitter: @LynchKevinM

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11:34 AM Permalink
September 11, 2012

Secure Government Documents with Digital Signatures and Adobe Acrobat

Increasing cyber attacks have led to mounting concern that unsecure government documents could be altered or falsified. To help counter these attacks, the National Information Security Center in Japan partnered with Adobe Acrobat to create support for electronic signatures using the Japanese Government Public Key Infrastructure (GPKI).

The main mission of NISC is to protect the government, but the organization’s other overall mission is to improve the entire security level of Japan. As the first step for protecting electronic documents, NISC implemented PDF as the standard format for electronic documents. “We prefer not to rely upon technology provided by one specific company, but we had no problems supporting the use of PDF files since they are the international standard ISO 32000-1,” says NISC.

NISC believed that the ideal solution would use the existing Japanese Government Public Key Infrastructure (GPKI) for handling certificates. Adobe formed a task force with NISC to work on support for GPKI and publish government official signatures to the Adobe Approved Trust List (AATL). This enables users of Adobe Acrobat X and Reader X to automatically and easily verify the electronic signatures of government officials on PDF files using the GPKI government official certificates.

“Thanks to cooperation from Adobe, we were able to effectively deploy GPKI, which enabled us to increase efficiency without raising costs,” says NISC. “With electronic signatures, we can thwart the intentions of attackers attempting to pull off spoofing attacks.”

Read more about this implementation here:

Akiko Yamamoto, Senior Product Marketing Manager, Acrobat Solutions

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8:48 AM Permalink
September 7, 2012

Adobe FormsCentral End of Summer Quiz!

It’s that time of the year, the end of summer. The kids are going back to school, traffic is picking up on the freeways, and you’ve watched too many summer blockbusters. But before the weather gets chilly, why don’t you host one more big party for your friends and family to celebrate?

Take our Adobe FormsCentral End of Summer Quiz to find out what kind of party suits you the best. Should you host a pool party, or a garden party? Take our quiz to find out.

And be sure to get our 4 FREE exclusive FormsCentral templates at the end of our quiz, as our way of saying thanks. With Adobe FormsCentral, build forms and gather data faster.

Take our End of Summer Quiz now! 

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8:45 AM Permalink
September 6, 2012

The Zen Approach to a Project Workflow

At BBDO Atlanta, the volumes of documents and assets we manage are pretty staggering. We house one of the largest print production centers in Omnicom’s global network of advertising agencies, so we are responsible for some very visible advertising for big-name clients. Every year, we produce between 18,000 and 20,000 highly refined ad mechanicals — creating and managing over 5,000 assets monthly.

Each ad mechanical we produce is a PDF document that moves through our workflow from start to finish. The entire production cycle is documented using Adobe Acrobat.  We time-stamp, log, and track production responsibilities and review cycles. Review cycles go faster as team members no longer have to decipher handwriting and can layer comments together within the file.

All of our print coordinators then run the files associated with an ad through a customized Acrobat preflight process that vets the mechanical for the requirements of hundreds of different publications. Everything is checked in great detail—ink density, dots per inch, missing fonts—you name it.

Our customized workflow is great because it allows us to take advantage of the out-of-the-box functionality of Acrobat   yet combine it with our own in-house production system. It gives us an enterprise-scale solution at low cost of ownership. Our users have more control and our IT professionals worry less about inadvertent errors.

Now, four print coordinators handle the workflow that previously required dozens of people working multiple shifts. We’ve eliminated the use of third-party software for checking final specifications, boosted the degree of quality assurance and predictability, and we’re getting closer to a paperless environment.

The main competitive differentiator for us is this turnkey automated workflow. It delivers highly repeatable, flexible, trusted outcomes that keep our clients happy. It also provides us with a strong sense of confidence and pride about our production services.

Adobe Acrobat brings a Zen approach to our project workflow; managing the job is easier and our employees are more productive.

Bill Lunsford, DBA, Graphics Manager, BBDO

Read the full story here:

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8:37 AM Permalink
September 4, 2012

Get Formative! New FormsCentral Template Exchange

Do you create forms in Adobe FormsCentral that make you proud? Forms that look good, that ask exactly the right questions, that just seem like the perfect forms? Do you ever wish you could share these awesomely awesome forms with the rest of the world?

Well, wish no more: now has a FormsCentral template exchange, which allows you to upload your designs and share them with other users at the Acrobat User Community. If you don’t make forms of your own, but want to use someone else’s awesomely awesome forms, you can browse through, download and use FormsCentral templates that others have uploaded, and rate or comment on these templates.

The template exchange is a great way to see what others are doing with FormsCentral and to share your work with the FormsCentral community. Go check it out today to start uploading your templates and browsing those that have been shared by others. If you’re interested in learning how to save your forms as templates, take a look at this FormsCentral video.

-    Rebecca Staley, Marketing Specialist, Acrobat Solutions

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9:03 AM Permalink

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