October 15- 17, Stenograph Employees participated in STARCON20, the annual conference of the STAR organization. STARCON was an opportunity to network, learn about new products, and share feedback among product users and the Stenograph team. While this is an annual event, it looked a little different this year as 2020 has brought so many changes to our routines and has forced us to adapt in ways that we never imagined. We have all become way too familiar with virtual meetings and finding new ways of doing the everyday. STARCON20 was no exception, as the event this year was virtual.
Stenograph hosted four virtual sessions- two focused on reporters and two focused on firm owners. We were so excited to share news about our latest CATalyst and writer product features and what new products we have in the works. Besides the product information, there were also training sessions and other thought-provoking discussions relevant to the current state of the industry. One of the highlights of the conference was the introduction of APEX. Stenograph introduced APEX earlier in the month (if you missed it, see the press release here), but this was the first opportunity we had to discuss this new solution and answer questions. The event was capped off by a cocktail hour and a “graffle,” where the grand prize was a Luminex II. Stenograph’s Cindi Lynch won, but donated it back to STAR and had a student randomly selected as the winner. Stephanie Barnes was the student that won the writer.
One of the highlights of STARCON is that various product managers have a chance to share product features and get product feedback directly from its users. Product Managers Lucy Smith and Ryan Piper shared information on how to get the most out of your Luminex II and CATalyst software. Training Manager Cindi Lynch gave information on Ascend Training by Stenograph, our brand-new training platform. Firm owners were treated to a session hosted by Brian Clune and John Garnett on YesLaw, Stenograph’s PDF Transcript Generator software.
In addition to hearing about existing products, STAR members had a sneak peek preview of our newest product, APEX. Coming out early next year, APEX is our new integrated workflow solution that seamlessly connects reporters and agencies. APEX was designed with agency challenges in mind and will help improve communication, reduce operational costs, and manage relationships. Supported by Artificial Intelligence and Blockchain security, APEX leverages state-of-the-art technology to help agencies reduce costs and increase profitability. For reporters, Case CATalyst will be updated, allowing users to communicate directly with agencies without ever leaving their software. Within CATalyst, there will be a direct connection to APEX where users can see job notifications, start a capture from their calendar, edit, submit finished files directly to the agency, and even complete billing. Reporters using APEX will also be eligible to earn loyalty points that can then be redeemed for product discounts on Stenograph products.
I am a relative newcomer to the Stenograph team, with STARCON as my first industry conference. Reflecting on it, I cannot imagine a better “formal introduction” into the court reporting community. I was nervous that this virtual platform would make it difficult to absorb all the feedback and knowledge, but I was pleasantly surprised. The knowledge I gained at STARCON was invaluable, and I look forward to the next time we can get together (hopefully in person!).
If you are interested in learning more about STAR and their conferences, visit staronline.org.