By Ben Mitchell, DocsCorp VP of Global Commercial Operations
There's an old saying that there's a right tool for every job. This is especially true when it comes to document comparison in the legal profession. Microsoft Word has always had a comparison feature, but Word as part of Office 365 boasts improved capability. Law firms upgrading to Microsoft Office 2016 will be looking to evaluate this new feature in the hope that it meets their comparison needs. However, questions will need to be asked. Can it really meet the demanding requirements of legal comparison?
We published a report that compares the results of file comparison software compareDocs with Microsoft Word in typical comparison scenarios. These are the 10 major differences that firms should be aware of when choosing a comparison solution.
Users have found Microsoft Word doesn’t accurately show changes in Tables, Headers/Footers, Footnotes, and Tables of Contents, which makes the technology difficult to rely on.
2. Lack of specialist knowledge
Since Microsoft closed its specialist legal team much of the expertise needed to continue to support and develop its comparison feature has been diluted, meaning it hasn’t kept up with the pace of change in the legal industry.
3. Rendering sets
Many law firms have their own style and formatting that they apply to documents. Microsoft Word cannot create, save, and edit Rendering Sets for different presentation choices.
4. No integration
If the firm uses a document, case or practice management system, document comparison software is most efficient when integrated. Microsoft Word does not integrate.
5. Limited output options
Microsoft Word creates comparison reports showing what has changed using Track Changes, a type of metadata that contains a high level of risk if not managed properly. Some firms prefer a report marked up with redline, eliminating the risk of revealing metadata and ensuring a consistent report for clients or co-counsel.
Fill in the form to continue reading and see a side-by-side comparison of Microsoft Word and compareDocs. In addition to showing the differences in results, the interactive report also comes with the original documents for users to run the tests within their own environment.