The 2016 SmartAdvocate® User Group Conference Recap

The first annual SmartAdvocate User Group Conference was held June 6th and 7th at the Long Island Marriott, in Uniondale, NY. Over 95 SmartAdvocate users from all over the country assembled to listen to presentations from member of the SmartAdvocate staff and over a dozen of the top thought leaders on law firm technology.

The SmartAdvocate staff spoke on a range of topics, including work plans, the case browse function, document templates and SA reports. CTO Igor Selizhuk gave the audience a preview of the new features that will be added to SmartAdvocate in this summer’s update. Dayhanara Baez spoke about the SA support system and discussed some of the most frequently asked support questions and requests. At the end of each day, Igor and Schery Ramadan conducted Q&A sessions where they fielded a wide range of questions from the assembled attendees.

Those at the Conference also had a chance to interact with and learn from a great group of SmartAdvocate business partners. In addition to having the opportunity to learn more about the products that are available for integration into SmartAdvocate, each of our sponsors spoke about his area of expertise. Clients were able to learn a lot more about a range of subjects, from intake and lead conversion to e discovery to process service to handling deposition transcripts and medical records to case financing. Those presentations were uniformly excellent, but my favorite (and the favorite of many of the people there) was the rousing talk about creating a great firm culture by Arnie Malham of Legal Intake Professionals (Arnies rule!).

The first day of the Conference was capped by a cocktail reception where clients, sponsors and SA staff all had ample opportunity to get to know each other better and network.

This being the first time SmartAdvocate has hosted an event of this type and scope, it was interesting to see some of the dynamics that developed, and some of the feedback that we received. We asked everyone at the Conference to complete a questionnaire evaluating the Conference, and many of you did. Thank you. One of the most consistent pieces of feedback we received from the questionnaires, as well as anecdotally, was that people wanted more SmartAdvocate training and learning. This was punctuated by the scene in the lobby during much of the second day, where several small groups of clients gathered at various impromptu locations, huddled around an SA staff member with a laptop, asking questions and receiving training and direction on a variety of topics. These sessions went on for hours, so they were obviously welcomed. In addition to providing more SA training and instruction, we’re going to figure out an effective way to incorporate this into next year’s conference. As with almost everything at SmartAdvocate, you ask, we listen and respond.

Photos of the Conference have been posted on our events website: Smart Advocate Event Photo Gallery.  Check them out when you get a chance.

Once again, thanks to everyone who came to this year’s Conference. Your active participation certainly helped to make this a great and worthwhile event. And, of course, another round of thanks to our sponsors; it is their continuing support that helps to make SmartAdvocate better and better.