This occasional solo profile focuses on Georgia workers’ compensation lawyer, Michael Moebes, who blogs at Georgia Workers’ Compensation Lawyer Blog. Michael is an injury lawyer with a focus on workers’ compensation practicing all over Georgia, but with a primary location is in Atlanta. This quickie interview with Mike came to mind when I read about the recent release of a cool app, called the Compulator, which helps calculate value of workers’ comp cases. In Mike’s words, here’s how he came up with the idea and more importantly, implemented it. For more information, you can contact Mike directly at mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org. Click here for additional information on how to purchase the Compulator App for your practice.
1. Please share a little information about your app, called the Compulator: What does it do?
It has 5 key features: a date calculator, present value calculator, life expectancy provider (from the CDC), “net to client” settlement calculator, and a mediation tracker. The latter feature calculates midpoints during settlement negotiations and keeps track of each side’s moves. This feature has been my favorite one, as clients like being able to visualize where their case is headed (in terms of dollars) during negotiations on my iPad.
2. Why did you decide to develop this app?
I wanted to buy an app that did some of the functions outlined above, and when I could’ve find one to buy, I looked into creating my own!
3. Is the app targeted for other lawyers or clients?
It’s targeted at lawyers. Insurance adjusters could also benefit from it, and, I suppose, a pro se client could, but it’s primarily for attorneys who represent individuals.
4. How did you develop the app? (did you program it yourself? Hire someone else? who came up with design and idea?
I came up with the idea and the functions I wanted. I have a friend who runs a marketing firm, and his company has coders who were able to help me do the actual development. The name of the company is KeySys Consulting in Birmingham.
5. What kinds of feedback have you received from your app?
So far, I’ve received a good bit of positive feedback. Many lawyers seem to like the novelty of creating an app, and the workers’ comp lawyers I know who’ve downloaded the app have indicated they enjoy using it for putting together settlement demand packages and tracking mediation moves.
6. I noticed that there is a fee to download the app. Does the app generate revenue for your firm (you don’t have to answer this if you don’t want)
The app just came out, and it’s selling pretty consistently (a few per week after an initial spike when it first came out). I didn’t create it to necessarily generate revenue, but I did want to recoup some of the development costs. Mainly, I created a tool I wanted to use, and I figured it would market my firm uniquely.
7. In addition to your own app, can you identify other apps that are a staple of your practice?
I use DropBox at mediations to refer to PDFs so that I’m not carrying around the entire file when I travel. I’m a Mac user with the Daylite case management system, so I use that app regularly, too. I use Ruby Receptionists for after hours call management, and I use its app for instructing the receptionists as to my whereabouts and where I want messages forwarded. Finally, I use social media apps every day: FaceBook, Twitter, and LinkedIn for networking.
8. Are apps the future of legal technology in your view?
I think they will play a bigger role than they do now but don’t necessarily think they’re “the future.” However, I think solos will continue to be the pioneers and advocates of new technology and will use them more frequently and more quickly than will the rest of the industry!