I have really been enjoying the 2020 Clio Cloud Conference with two more days to go. Yesterday, I had the pleasure of interviewing Clio CEO and co-founder Jack Newton. He was smiling broadly, as indeed he should have been given the enthused reaction of his conference audience.
Jack was happily surprised by having over 4500 attendees, more than double the 2000 attendees at last year’s in-person conference. Never one to be daunted by a challenge, Jack and his team worked hard to make this an interactive virtual conference with a strong sense of community. I know he succeeded because I carefully watched the chat while sessions were taking place.
There was a small army of tech gremlins as the conference opened up (they’ve attacked me too Jack) but they were quickly defeated.
Jack noted that he wanted to avoid attendees feeling like they were watching a canned webinar. He obviously did a good job. People were busy making new connections and talking amongst themselves in a “lobby conference.”
I was struck by how Jack echoed what John and I discuss in webinars – that the practice of law had advanced 10 years or more in roughly 10 weeks. Jack would not have believed it pre-pandemic and neither would we. As Jack notes, there has been a “Teutonic shift” in our profession.
Suddenly, lawyers who wanted to practice law the way they always had were embracing technology on all fronts. As Jack noted, there will be winners and losers in this process. There are lawyers who are still waiting for the pandemic to blow over, thinking they can return to the past. But this is not a blip on the radar. Perhaps not all changes are permanent, but many of them are.
I asked Jack about the many integrations that were announced at the conference, including Google My Business, HelloSign, Zoom, Microsoft Teams and more. For all of that news, please read Bob Ambrogi’s excellent post.
Jack commented that no one “can do it alone” and that integrations are key to solving the problems that clients have. Why reinvent the wheel yourself when someone else already has? The answer is to integrate your work with theirs.
Notable as well is the new Sign in with Clio feature, which will allow Clio users to log-in to integrated third-party applications using the same credentials used for Clio Manage and Clio Grow. This is launching initially for Clio’s integration partners Fastcase, Legalboards, myFirmData, WiseTime and LawYaw, but Clio plans eventually to extend it to all of its more than 200 integrations.
In the ongoing battle of security vs. convenience, I laughingly told Jack that he was going a long way toward making security convenient.
Jack told me the unifying theme of the conference is that the future of law is client-centric and cloud based. That reminded me to recommend Jack’s excellent book The Client-Centered Law Firm which I read several months ago. Two points that Jack I agreed upon:
- What clients want and what lawyers want is beginning to converge (more on that next week when I review the results of the new Clio Legal Trends report).
- Law firms must be cloud-based. Or, as Jack puts it, “The cloud has become table stakes.”
Thanks to Jack for an illuminating interview and to Chloe Phillips for doing such a great job supporting the folks from the media at this conference.
Clio, in a brave new world, is rocking this year’s virtual conference!
Sharon D. Nelson, Esq., President, Sensei Enterprises, Inc.
3975 University Drive, Suite 225|Fairfax, VA 22030
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Digital Forensics/Cybersecurity/Information Technology