Brittle & Brittle PC is a law office in Portland, Oregon that practices family law, estate planning, litigation, divorce and child custody issues.
When I started the practice I had been programming my own web-based system in PHP. I was really getting somewhere but found that all my time was spent in developing and not enough time went into practicing law. I enjoyed the project of programming the system but wanted to look around for an alternative solution to fill the gap. That’s when I found Daylite. I started using it and quickly realized that it did everything I wanted my app to do, so I thought “Perfect, I’ll just use this!”
I always had 5 key requirements that I needed a solution to be able to do: 1. Manage Contacts 2. Handle Projects (Matters) 3. Manage Tasks (To Dos) 4. Manage Notes 5. Manage Calendars These were the things I needed my own programmed solution to be able to do and I compared a lot of other solutions to Daylite but found that Daylite was the only solution that had the granulated level linking capability. With Daylite, I can take any calendar event and link it to a contact and link it all to a single matter. This makes it very easy for us to pull up a single matter and see everything associated with it (all the emails, notes from a phone call, upcoming tasks, and upcoming court dates). It also allows me to filter for what I’m looking for. I can pull up a case and see what upcoming court dates I have by filtering by appointments and court dates specifically. Right away I can see that I have appointments 3 months from now, which makes it very easy to sift through that data and also easy for our team members to digest what’s going on in any case they haven’t been involved in.
I am a managing partner and we have other associates so I don’t have my hand in every single case. I may get a call about another case and with Daylite I can pull up that case and see everything happening with it. I can see all the related emails and upcoming court dates. Without Daylite, I would have to pull up the file and shuffle through people’s handwritten notes and try to piece together an idea of what’s going on. Daylite provides a consistent and easy way to be brought up to speed on a case without leaving my desk. I can take a phone call with someone I’ve never spoken to before and while taking, bring myself up to date without putting them on hold. This definitely helps the cohesiveness of information between our attorneys.
Our overall organization has gotten better with Daylite and this creates a better client experience. I can quickly pull up a case file and also quickly filter though cases that haven’t been addressed or clients that haven’t been contacted and then create a task for myself. We use Daylite in a biweekly status check meeting to go through each open matter and add what is necessary to move it forward. This way we always make sure no files are slipping between the cracks. We have an active reminder system now with Daylite, rather than the standard paper files which just sit there.
With Daylite on my iPad, I can bring it with me to court and easily schedule court dates. If the court throws out a date, I can easily check if I am available. It’s also nice to have a list of clients on my iPad so that way if a client is running late I can pull them up on my iPad and give them a call from the court house.
With the introduction of Daylite 5, I feel like Daylite has gotten much faster. I know for sure that the database optimization has reduced the size of our database to 10% of what it was, which makes things substantially faster. I really like the Timeline view in Daylite 5 as well. I can click on a matter and see all the history and events in a timeline marker, which visually gives me a good indicator of what’s been done and how old the case is. The overall usability is better and faster. It looks more refined and is more responsive. The addition of the search bar to look through everything is wonderful. I use the search at least 50 times a day. I can pull up a case number easily just from knowing the county it is in and type in the first 3 letters of the last name. I can find information much faster, but the real power behind Daylite is the linking capability. The ability to dive in and see everything related to a person- the cases related and everything associated with the case allows me to do internal research very quickly.