Carolina law firm switches from Acrobat to realize significant cost savings and productivity gains

Published on March 12, 2015 by kerryc
Based in the Carolinas, McAngus Goudelock & Courie wanted a cost-effective alternative to Adobe Acrobat without compromising on legal workflow, capability or security. They found a replacement for Acrobat in pdfDocs. They were also able to replace Workshare with DocsCorp’s compareDocs for document comparison. McAngus Goudelock & Courie is a full-service law firm with a strong presence in the Carolinas. Founded in 1995, the firm now has eleven offices in North and South Carolina with over 134 attorneys, providing its clients with an extensive range of legal services. MG&C is a forward-thinking firm, committed to delivering innovative business and legal solutions and unparallel levels of service to its clients.

The business challenge

Like all law firms, much of MG&C’s business entails vast amounts of paperwork: from contracts to client records and legal briefs. Efficiently managing documents is of paramount importance to MG&C. Moreover, given the confidential nature of legal documents, MG&C needs to distribute documents outside the firm in a format that is safe, secure and universally readable. MG&C wanted to standardize its PDF creation and management tools across all its offices. The firm had pockets of Adobe Acrobat licenses, using different versions of the software. Purchasing additional licenses of an Acrobat version to provide everyone with the same features and functionality was extremely prohibitive. It was at that point that the firm started to look for an alternative, cost-effective solution. While they wanted to control costs, they didn’t want to compromise on legal workflow, capability or security. Roland Hundley, IT Director, recalls hearing about DocsCorp and its pdfDocs product for law firms. “On paper the product looked like it would do everything we needed, so we decided to set up a pilot group of 10 Acrobat power users from different departments to put the product through its paces.” The pilot lasted for 30 days and feedback from the group was very positive. The verdict was that pdfDocs would provide MG&C with all the features and functionality to perform everyday production tasks at a cost significantly lower than Acrobat.

Our solution 

Designed specifically for law firms, pdfDocs empowers legal professionals to perform many routine, everyday legal production tasks such as document collation, bates stamping, file splitting, redaction, Closing Book creation, OCR and document comparison. Moreover, in a deadline-driven environment such as a law firm, the unique interface and integration into core legal applications and systems streamlines processes and workflow to deliver significant productivity gains. ”With pdfDocs on every desktop,” noted Hundley “we saw an immediate increase in productivity. The cumulative effect of even small productivity gains in everyday operations can deliver big returns. Staff were able to perform the tasks they needed to complete on time and on budget—they did not have to wait on others anymore.” For example, the pdfDocs Organizer workspace is a unique concept in PDF creation software, where users do not have to save documents to a location every time they create a PDF document. Instead, documents are temporarily stored in the Organizer workspace while the user works on the content. The user simply prints documents to the Organizer workspace, where they can collate, edit, redact, split or bates stamp individual pages, documents or multiple sets of documents. When the document is finalized, the user can print, OCR, email, or save the collated set of documents from the Organizer workspace to a local, network drive or directly into a document management system as a single, secure PDF document. “During the pilot and training sessions that followed, users commented on how easy and intuitive the applications were to use,” recalls Hundley. “We noted a steady decline in the number of requests for IT support after the deployment, which freed us up to undertake and complete other business-critical projects.” “Not only did pdfDocs enable MG&C to replace Adobe Acrobat and put PDF creation and editing capability on to every desktop, it also provided us with a robust document comparison solution. We were able to replace Workshare Professional, which we had used previously.”

Document comparison with a difference

“Not only did pdfDocs enable MG&C to replace Adobe Acrobat and put PDF creation and editing capability on to every desktop, it also provided us with a robust document comparison solution. We were able to replace Workshare Professional, which we had used previously.” The compareDocs approach to document comparison and workflow is unique, providing law firms with a seamless, integrated comparison workflow that delivers unprecedented levels of accuracy and efficiency to meet the complex comparison needs of today’s law firm. compareDocs provides single-click workflows to reduce complexity and inefficiencies in performing a particular task or process. compareDocs, for example, provides users with an “email comparison report as Word or PDF with source documents attached” workflow. Or, you need to compare two PDFs. What you don’t know is that one of the PDFs is an image-based PDF. This will require the document to be OCR’ed before it can be compared. compareDocs automatically detects this and will OCR the PDF when you click the Compare button.


Like many law firms, McAngus Goudelock & Courie used various flavors of Acrobat across its eleven offices. However, it wanted to standardize on a single application. The firm decided to switch to pdfDocs from DocsCorp, which provided all the features and functionality of Acrobat without the premium pricing. It also switched its document comparison software from Workshare to DocsCorp’s compareDocs, which provided additional worksflows and integration to compare Word, PDF and image-based documents. Download PDF version...