We happen to have family and friends who are U.S. Immigration attorneys and when they asked us to assist with an integration between some internal tools and their case management software, we were surprised at how outdated the leading offerings were for immigration case management solutions. Not only clunky old UI design, but slow underlying technologies with spaghetti SQL, plus poor customer support.
We assessed the market offerings, and decided we could do something new that would be 1) easier to use, 2) add seamless integrations with cloud services people liked, and 3) be different and even enjoyable to use. So we met with these attorneys, offered to build it at our own cost with their feedback guiding us, and then launch it as a retail product ourselves.
‘LollyLaw’ was launched in 2014 and has continued to evolve and adapt to the changes in immigration law to be a mainstay option for attorneys wanting a modern take on immigration case management.
A lack of innovative software options
We surveyed immigration law professionals and found that they were unhappy with other software options in the market due to slow updates, complicated user interface, and lack of innovative features.
Incoming Immigration reform
Estimated 2-7 million immigrants offered relief under executive order or congressional immigration reform. Practicing immigration attorneys were gearing up for influx of customers; firms would need efficient software to automate their processes and meet the demand for legal services.
Using modern development tools
This area had not seen a new software entry in almost 15 years. Like, back when you “burned” music to cd, printed MapQuest directions, and the yellow pages were still a thing. There is newer cutting-edge technology and frameworks available that could deliver a solution that is super fast, fully customizable, and effortlessly scalable.
Immigration case management is quite a beast to navigate – complex data architecture, lengthy form-sets that are frequently changed, unique legal workflows, Federal regulations, security requirements, and the utmost need for accuracy in final application. This is probably why few have ventured into these waters. The way we approach our projects has enabled us to take on complex efforts and produce quality results consistently.
We started by gathering knowledge through interviews, attending legal conferences, studying the market, and observing immigration law processes. We used the insights to produce process flows, created user profiles, and built content libraries.
“You can observe a lot by watching.” -Yogi Berra
Good research is a strong foundation for finding insights and establishing the project plan – one that communicates assumptions and decisions, defines scope, cost, and timeline. We envisioned the solution, data architecture, and core features.
One ‘pain point’ we saw was a bottleneck in content creation. Immigration forms contain thousands of data-points, conditional questions, and addendums. In order to simplify the creation of content we developed specialized tools for our team to dynamically add fields to the database and build forms at the same time. We were awarded a provisional patent for a semantic database design. It allowed us to make changes to the database schema and convert in real-time. This freed up our developer resources and allowed the support team to focus on content creation.
We spent just enough time with attorneys and their staff to build empathy. This understanding was the foundation of our aesthetically pleasing designs that are functional and provide a delightful experience for users.
The look-and-feel was crafted to be clear, match natural workflows, and load incredibly fast. We designed for responsiveness, browser compatibility, and added graceful animations that provide visual cues and feedback.
Lolly Law was launched July 2014 in Boston, MA at the AILA (American Immigration Lawyers Association) National Convention. The positive feedback confirmed our theory that a modern case management solution for immigration would be well received! Attorneys love our software and make it clear with their inspiring testimonials.
Today, we are continuing to update the software based on the feedback of our users and fans, strengthening our community, and evolving the product by delivering on our published roadmap. Upcoming additions include a client portal, onscreen form filling, and gmail integration.