Lauren Sturdivant simply got “tired of drowning.”
“Every morning, I walked into my office and I had 30-plus emails and 25-plus voicemails. And more often than not, I was answering the same questions from clients,” says the former attorney.
She knew that technology would offer her the lifeline she needed, saving her several crucial hours of work per week she could use to resolve her cases more quickly and increase her monthly fees. She also knew updating her stressed-out clients more often via technology would provide them peace of mind and a better connection to her as their lawyer.
However, to her surprise, when she started looking for ways to update clients without calling or emailing them, she could not find one. “It’s crazy in an industry that is so focused on relationships, that client relationship software did not exist, and I knew it had to,” she says. Because the problem was so painful, I felt called to go and help attorneys and clients everywhere and solve this problem.”
Sturdivant ultimately answered the call, left her legal career and co-founded Case Status, an attorney/client engagement software and marketing tool for law firms, in 2017. The Birmingham-based company provides an easy way for law firms to keep clients updated on the status of their cases. As Sturdivant says, “Clients can look at their phones and, with a few clicks, know exactly what’s happening.”
Clients can receive case updates by text or a firm-branded mobile app. Case Status lets firms centralize communication across multiple attorneys, case managers, and clients by simplifying and automating their client management processes.
Put simply, Sturdivant says, “We reduce the time lawyers spend managing clients so they can focus on being lawyers.”
The company gained customer traction quickly by listening to their concerns and building features specifically designed to solve the problems they detailed. “When we started obtaining amazing use cases from law firm customers about how Case Status was saving them time, reducing phone calls, making happier clients, accelerating firm growth, and data points on improved client satisfaction, we knew we had hit product-market fit,” Sturdivant says.
In one case, a law firm customer decided to audit Case Status by tracking the number of in-bound calls from their current clients. “The calls were swamping them,” she says. “They came to Case Status looking for a solution to help them keep clients updated and to save staff time communicating with clients.”
After using Case Status for a few months, the customer’s audit found an 85 percent reduction in calls from current clients. As Sturdivant says, “It’s an incredible decrease that speaks to the preference clients have in the way they want to communicate, and to the power of Case Status as a platform.”
After announcing a Series Seed II investment funding round of $1.5 million from venture investment firm BIP Capital today, Case Status is looking forward to “turbo-charging” its rapid growth, which includes hiring new veteran personnel and developing new feature sets for specific legal practice areas like personal injury, criminal defense and immigration. Case Status first met with BIP Capital as a member of Techstars Atlanta‘s 2018 cohort and felt an instant connection.
“We really liked them personally, were impressed with their portfolio, and it was clear that they were knowledgeable and brought a lot to the table in terms of helping their portfolio companies scale effectively. In other words, they just got it,” says Sturdivant.
“We’re excited to partner with Case Status to resolve a common but critical pain point between lawyers and their clients—a dearth in regular communications,” Dan Drechsel, senior vice president at BIP Capital, said in a statement. “We look forward to working with Lauren and the Case Status leadership team to continue the company’s momentum in this untapped area.”
Sturdivant understands that she’s blazing through uncharted territory. “At the moment, we’re pretty much standing alone,” she says. “Case Status is a new product in the legal industry. So we’re running as hard and as fast as possible so no one can catch us.”