The International Legal Technology Association (ILTA) formed over 30 years ago due to the shared needs and concerns of law firm accounting professionals using Wang Computers. As technology seeped and then poured into legal entities, ILTA grew in areas of expertise and support. ILTA’s membership includes law firms, corporate and non-profit legal departments, courts, law schools and more from across the globe with backgrounds in applications, desktop support, litigation support, systems, marketing, knowledge management, communications technology and yes, libraries.
As library departments transform into technology hubs, ILTA provides insight for our work. Here’s the good news: you are likely already a member. Membership in ILTA is entity-based. If your organization is a member, you can register at no additional cost. To check for membership, look up your organization on the member entity list. Members participate in various discussion communities and free webinars, roadshows, and other local events. You may not be interested in the webinar on OpenText eDOCS but could find value in a SharePoint or big data webinar. To access free materials regardless of membership, go to www.iltanet.org and http://connect.iltanet.org/home. You can read member blog posts including mine, “But Wait… There’s More.”
ILTA recently hosted its annual conference, ILTACON 2015, at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas, Nevada. Over 1600 member attendees from 14 countries and many Chicagoans attended. I experienced my first ILTACON as both an attendee and as staff. The conference begins on a Sunday afternoon with Communities of Interest (COI). These casual groups organized by areas of focus such as SharePoint, Litigation Support, Social Networking, Security, Emerging Technologies and Librarians spark networking for the whole conference. I attended Social Networking and Librarians COIs where I met great people focused on knowledge management and service. Following Sunday, the week kicked off with 200+ educational sessions, keynote speakers and many more networking opportunities. Sir Ken Robinson gave a dynamic, funny and thought provoking keynote on “finding your passion.” If you have not seen Sir Ken Robinson’s TED Talk, I highly recommend making it a part of your evening commute.
Perhaps you want to know what’s hot and what’s not in legal technology. ILTA provides downloaded sessions from the conference including recordings and slides. I encourage you to do your own exploring but some of my favorites included “Spark Talks,” “Let KM Drive Client Value The Don Draper Way,” “Unstructured, Untagged and Untapped: Get Rid of the ‘Un’ with New Ways to Find and Manage Enterprise Content” and “Joining Forces: How Firms are Working Collaboratively Across Organizational Boundaries to Drive Performance.”
ILTACON provided great opportunities for the membership to network. Like librarians, leaders in legal technology thrive when they share their ideas and questions with their colleagues. I would be remiss if I did not mention the abundant and delicious food and the band at ILTACON. Yes, you read that correctly. ILTA has an all-member rock and roll band called The Legal Bytes. The Legal Bytes perform live each year at the conference and they are great! Let me know when CALL has its first band practice – I can bring a tambourine.
To learn about ILTA webinars or events in the Chicago area, see the ILTA Connected Community Calendar. Next time you see me, please ask me about ILTA.