eDiscovery Daily Blog

eDiscovery Trends: Making the Most of LegalTech


It’s that time of year… LegalTech® New York is right around the corner.  People are talking about it, making plans to get together, scheduling demos and meetings, and deciding which parties to attend.  Newbies to the show are excited to go.  More seasoned attendees are looking forward to seeing peers.  It’s a great time to catch up with people and it offers a great opportunity to keep abreast of new industry trends and technology advancements.

Is there a downside? Well, yes, there is.  Attending the show costs money (travel expenses, lost billings, or both).  And more significantly, it eats up one of our scarcest resources:  time.  Some years I’ve questioned whether it was worth it.  Other years, it’s been obviously valuable.  Interestingly, the difference has not had anything to do with the show itself, but rather with my approach to it.  So let me suggest an approach for making the most out of your next LegalTech show.

  1. Establish one or two primary objectives:  Determine what you want to accomplish or what you want to learn, and make those your objectives.  For example, maybe you don’t have experience with predictive coding and want to learn more about it.  Or maybe it’s been awhile since you’ve looked at document review tools and it’s time to re-evaluate them.  Identify specific objectives to focus on.
  2. Identify conference sessions to attend:  Look at the conference schedule and identify sessions aimed at the objectives you’ve established.  Put them on your calendar.
  3. Identify vendors with products and/or services aimed at your areas of interest:  Review the exhibitor list, go to vendor web sites, and make a list of vendors of interest.  Identify the exhibit booths you’d like to visit, and identify the vendors with whom you’d like to meet.
  4. Schedule demos and meetings:  To ensure you meet your objectives, schedule meetings and/or demos with a few vendors. 
  5. Prepare lists of questions:  You will get the most out of meetings/demos with vendors if you are armed with a list of specific questions.  For each of your objectives, identify the questions you should be asking.
  6. Keep good records:  At the show, take good notes and collect contact information.  You will be meeting a lot of people and it will be very difficult to remember everything you’ve learned if you’re not taking good notes!
  7. Take advantage of the networking opportunities:  Get together with peers and talk about what they are doing, what tools they are using, and what approaches they’ve implemented.  Introduce yourself to people you don’t know.  Casual conversations in social situations can be invaluable!
  8. Commit to reporting on what you’ve learned:  Before the show, commit to preparing a report on your findings.  You are more likely to stay focused on your objectives if you’ve committed to reporting on them.

If you haven’t approached LegalTech with this type of plan yet, you may be surprised at what a difference it can make!  Do the up-front leg work, enjoy the show, and make it a good use of your time!

So, what do you think?  Are you ready for LegalTech?  Please share any comments you might have or if you’d like to know more about a particular topic.