ABA Tech Expo Review for Solo and Small Law Firms

As a consultant who helps solo and small law firms manage the business of practicing law, I am constantly looking at software to help systemize processes. This year I attended the ABA Tech Expo with the purpose of scouting software useful to my clients.  This short blog post is a snapshot of what I saw demoed and in some cases, my opinions. 

Note:  Practice management software is a different beast.  I demoed seven and will be putting my summary in the next post. 

In no particular order:

Purpose of Software Manufacturer Comments
Contact Management Lawmatics Good for Marketing Team.  No integration to Outlook.  Not ready yet.  Just rolled-out 3/2018. 
Receptionist/Client Screening Answer1 Competes with Ruby Receptionist.  Answer1 has 24/7 service. Will input information into many client intake software packages. 
Calendaring LawToolBox Competes with CompuLaw and Calendar Rules. Integration with Outlook 365.  One fee – all courts.  Nice integration.  May be better price point with all courts in one fee. 
TimeKeeping iTimeKeep Nice product.  App allows you to dictate time.  Integrates with a lot of billing software.  Not the smaller all-in-one practice management like Clio and MyCase, but it integrates with TABs, TimeSlips, Aderant, Amicus, etc.
Timekeeping Tali Similar to iTimeKeep however it works with Siri to allow dictation of time and importing into Clio, Practicepanter and Rocket Matter, maybe more may be added. Still growing – new. 
Quickwords + TextExpander Integrates with Mac and PC. Runs in background so you can create a code (few characters) to blow out to words, phrases, paragraphs, etc. and codes can be used in Outlook, Excel, Word.  Could be a good option for small firms.  Less than $10 per month per user. 
eDiscovery Zylab ONE eDiscovery Good eDiscovery option.  Pay by Gig.  Firm can upload docs or Zylab can.  Seems to have more options than others I’ve looked at like Logikcull and Everlaw- more on par with Relativity.  Would definitely look at if researching eDiscovery options.
Video Tool Padcaster GREAT!  $1,300 and you turn your phone and iPad into a podcasting/video system.  Great for producing training videos for clients and website.
Software Development Chetu Complete software development.  They use developers in India – $25 an hour for any software program to be created.  You have the idea, they have the talent.
Attorney Help LawClerk Database of attorneys (“LawClerks”) who are available by hour/project.  Like TaskRabbit.  They screen/verify LawClerks who are looking for hourly or project based work.  There is a database.  Attorney needing help posts project, time, how much to pay and LawClerks respond.  Chose LawClerk you want to work with.  Can chose same person over and over. Nothing on site except basic info of both parties.  No client information. 
Time & Billing TimeSolv Nice Program if this is what you are looking for.  Have to use Quickbooks.  Back and Forth between Time & Billing and Quickbooks seems antiquated.  I think Time & Billing + Financial is a better way to go.  Better reporting, more customization and better integration.  But, if you are looking for a TimeSlips replacement, it is a good one.
Document Search MetaJure Google like search for all information in DM system, server and desk. Sounds great, but hard to tell.  It would be hard to see how fast it would be unless demoed at a real firm with information spread  all over the place.

 

DLC Consulting Services, LLC is not affiliated with any of these software products.  My opinions are my own based on 30+ years in the legal field – most of those managing law firms.  If you are trying to decide what software will work for your firm, please let me help you.  The cost is minimal and the benefit is vast. 

Diane L. Camacho

 

 

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