How customers told us to start from scratch

Jury consultants and trial attorneys are nice

We started JurorSearch with a big idea: let’s give trial attorneys and their consultants all the information about potential jurors that political campaigns regularly use about potential voters.

We built a product. Licensed some data. It worked! And when we showed our customers — public defenders and prosecutors, civil trial attorneys and jury consultants —we thought they would love it.

We were wrong.

The data was nice. Some of it was already available.

But what they really wanted was a way to communicate around their specific needs. There simply wasn’t any software product designed for fast-paced teams to work together to select a jury. They didn’t want data. They wanted software.

The consultants and attorneys showed us how they email spreadsheets around and mock up lots of pdfs and keep two legal pads open with post-it notes for each juror. Teams communicated via frantic text chains, whispers in the courtroom gallery and passing notes to the lawyers’ table.

There is so much information coming in so quickly, sometimes important information fell through the cracks before decisions had to get made.

And so because of the generosity of potential customers who explained this to us, we pivoted.

We dumped our product that pulled up data on individual jurors from the million person database.

And we built a new product from scratch where attorneys and consultants enter in all the information as they get it from the courtroom and online research along with their notes and comments in an organized and intuitive way.

We had no idea this need existed.

Every single JurorSearch feature is from customer feedback and direction.

They want real-time chat. A repository for all notes for each juror. Several different ways of viewing all the jurors to compare and contrast. Tracking of those who are removed. Ratings and rankings of each juror, both visually and numerically. Searchable text for customized surveys. PDF generation for each juror and an exported record of all notes kept during the trial. And more to come.

We are still learning what our future customers want. Since everyone has their idiosyncratic preferences on how they like to work, we add in new workflow designs to display all the information on jurors. We’ve got 6 so far and will likely end up with a dozen so everyone can use software that improves the particular way they run voir dire.

Our goal is to clearly beat the status quo for jury selection communications of post-it notes, text messages and emails during jury selection and become the best choice for managing voir dire with teams.

That was not the mission of our company when we started!

We’re lucky to have found a group of professionals who are willing to share what custom software for their industry should do. And it’s helpful that there aren’t any jury trials happening during the pandemic so they have time to talk to us.

Sometimes listening to your customers means starting from scratch and creating what they want.