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NetDocuments vs. Worldox: A Full Legal Document Management Platform Comparison

"Great company, great products, great leadership, great people, great culture!"
"I love my team and peers. We are family, and we respect each other."
"NetDocuments encourages a good work/family balance."
"I feel respected and valued by leadership and my team."
"We work together and support/encourage each other to do our best work every day."
"From start to finish, my leaders are willing to guide me and let me try new things. This keeps work fresh, exciting, and fun so I don't burn out or get bored."
"I have clear direction in my work tasks and priorities. I also feel encouraged to put my family first and maintain a healthy work life balance."
"I work with highly motivated individuals who are smart and allow me to learn from them!"
"NetDocuments is committed to exceeding customer expectations by building leading products hosted in rock-solid environments."
"I'm empowered to try new things and think through processes and campaigns strategically. I can lean on my boss for support, but I'm not micromanaged, which is appreciated."
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Investing in a new legal document management system (DMS) is a major decision. Whether you’re retiring a legacy system or just starting your legal DMS journey, this is a choice and a change you only want to make once. Getting it right the first time is vital.

Of course, selecting a platform is easier said than done, especially with so many legal technology solutions on the market.

Worldox and NetDocuments are two popular DMS options for lawyers and legal teams, but how do these two platforms compare? More importantly, how do you know which one is right for your work?

In this article, we’ll share a detailed comparison of Worldox and NetDocuments, including don’t miss features, key differences between the platforms, and insight into how they can impact your day-to-day work. Empowered with this information, you’ll be more prepared to choose the platform that’s right for you.

Meet the Platforms

Before we dig into the details, here is a quick overview of these two legal-centric DMS platforms, where they’re coming from, and the types of service they offer.

  • Worldox has been on the document management software scene since 1988. For most of that time, they’ve been solely an on-premises solution. The company began offering multisite capabilities for their network-hosted product in 2012 (Worldox Enterprise), and they introduced Worldox Cloud in 2013.
  • NetDocuments has been purely cloud-based since its founding in 1999. The organization’s One Cloud approach delivers an enterprise-grade cloud infrastructure for customers around the globe and easily scales to fit firms of any size. In 2021, NetDocuments received FedRAMP Authorization, which means they’re even trusted for use by government agencies

Believe it or not, these origins have a significant impact on the kind of service each platform is able to offer. We’ll show you how.

Comparing DMS Features

With the pandemic, law firms (and other organizations) are turning to the benefits of the cloud more than ever. So we’ll focus our comparison on NetDocuments and Worldox Cloud, rather than Worldox’s on-premises solutions.

As expected, both Worldox Cloud and NetDocuments offer the fundamental features of a legal DMS such as:

  • User permissions
  • Version control
  • Archiving and retention
  • Backups and file recovery
  • Client- and matter-centric organization
  • Email management tools
  • Desktop and mobile apps

Without features like these, you simply wouldn’t have a DMS that’s suitable for legal work. So if you only need the basics to help your team get the job done, both solutions may deliver what you’re looking for.

However, NetDocuments has additional features to help lawyers be more productive with less effort — not just to work, but to Work Inspired. Powerful productivity-boosting features include:

  • Built-in eSignature
  • One-click filing
  • Secure external collaboration
  • Data Loss Prevention (DLP)
  • Dynamic profile attributes
  • Assembly of document sets
  • Optical Character Recognition (which means all images, PDFs, etc. are searchable)

… and many, many more.

But what’s even particularly special about these features is that they’re all built directly into the NetDocuments platform. There’s no need to purchase third-party add-ons. Everything you need is already there at your fingertips.

Let’s Talk Benefits (and Drawbacks)

Your DMS is supposed to make your life easier — but not all platforms or features are created equal. To help you get a clearer picture of how Worldox and NetDocuments compare, let’s take a deep dive into three of the most essential criteria you should consider when selecting a legal DMS: cloud architecture, key integrations, and remote access.

True Cloud vs. Hosted Cloud

Previously we mentioned that NetDocuments is a cloud-native platform, while Worldox is an on-premises platform adapted for cloud deployment. But what does that actually mean for you and other users?

What Worldox Cloud offers is known as a hosted cloud. Sounds good, right? But here’s the secret about hosted clouds: you’re still effectively getting on-premises software. It’s just hosted on a remote server and managed by the vendor (or another third party).

While hosted clouds enable remote access and reduce the need for on-premises hardware, you’ll still deal with many of the challenges that come with on-prem systems: reduced flexibility, limited support, and delayed updates and bug fixes, to name a few. Those challenges can create major productivity losses for your team.

True cloud systems are different. Designed, developed, and deployed to take advantage of the cloud environment, these solutions offer faster implementation, automatic updates, little (if any) scheduled downtime, superior security, and more. As a cloud-native platform, that’s what NetDocuments offers customers.

To learn more about comparing true cloud platforms and hosted solutions, check out our handy guide to cloud architecture!

Microsoft Teams and O365 Integrations

Microsoft apps are some of the most used and loved professional tools in the world, so it’s absolutely essential that a legal DMS be compatible with Microsoft’s suite of products.

Worldox offers an O365 add-in that permits users to move documents between Worldox and Office Online or OneDrive. The company also offers a Microsoft Teams integration so customers can use the collaborative tools in Teams to work on documents before returning them to the DMS.

But here’s the problem: Your confidential documents have to leave the Worldox DMS to use their Microsoft integrations.

As a result, user permissions may not carry over, version control quickly falls apart, and you can easily end up with multiple versions of the truth as document copies get spread across repositories. In short, it’s a major governance issue.

NetDocuments, on the other hand, offers a truly seamless experience between the DMS and Microsoft applications. Using the ndOffice feature, customers can use the advanced document management capabilities of NetDocuments while working in preferred apps like Microsoft Word, PowerPoint, and Excel.

The connection grows even stronger with NetDocuments’ ChatLink for Microsoft Teams. This unique integration keeps your files organized and protected inside the NetDocuments platform, even when you access them through Teams.

You can easily connect Teams channels with matter- or client-specific workspaces in NetDocuments, and there’s no need to switch between platforms to check out, rename, or save a new version of a document. You can also be assured that all user access controls from NetDocuments carry over to Teams.

With NetDocuments, working and collaborating using your favorite apps is seamless and secure — just the way it should be.

Mobility and Remote Access

One of the key benefits of transitioning to the cloud is making it easier for your team to work remotely, whether from their home office, while vacationing, or on-the-go. They should be able to access files from any device, anywhere, quickly and easily.

With Worldox Cloud, users can access the platform via web browser or iOS device through the Worldox mobile app. Remote web access is possible but requires a VPN connection.

NetDocuments customers don’t have to worry about VPN connections because the platform and security infrastructure have been built for the cloud from the beginning. NetDocuments offers reliable remote access anywhere you have an internet connection — whether via web, desktop, or mobile apps for iOS and Android. No VPN required.

Get Even More with NetDocuments

Document and email management are the heart and soul of NetDocuments, but there are many additional tools to enhance and increase productivity, depending on your specific needs.

The core solution, ORGANIZE, includes document management, email management, eSignature, Optical Character Recognition (OCR), and more.

For users with additional security requirements, the PROTECT solution helps you build ethical walls, prevent unauthorized user actions, and add an extra layer of cryptography to secure your files.

The PLAN solution takes collaboration to the next level with secure instant messaging, real-time editing and annotation, project and task management — and, of course, ChatLink for Microsoft Teams.

Need to collaborate outside your organization? The DELIVER solution can help. Whether you need to share content with clients, customers, outside counsel, or other groups, you can easily create secure, shareable workspaces and organized document sets.

Last but not least is the LEARN solution, which helps supercharge legal research and unlock powerful insights from your documents and data to help you boost efficiency, increase productivity, and drive better outcomes.

User Testimonials & Case Studies

NetDocuments’ global customer base is over 3,400 strong and growing at a record pace — thanks in part to 70 former Worldox customers who switched to NetDocuments within the first nine months of 2021 alone.

But don’t take our word for it. Explore a few customer case studies to see what your peers have to say about NetDocuments:

from Burke, Warren, MacKay & Serritella

"The biggest surprise once we made the transition was how easy it was to use the system right off the bat."

- Anthony Moore, Director of IT

from Kutak Rock

“NetDocuments is anything but stagnant and looks to practicing lawyers on how to continually improve and dial-in the service."

- Jay Selanders, Chair

from Magrath Sheldrick

"It’s clear that NetDocuments has the provisions in place to make sure our data is safeguarded and always going to be there when we need it."

- Nick Doughty, IT Director

from Barrila Law

"Everybody loves NetDocuments. We would not be able to live without it."

- Gaetano Barrila, Founder

A Clear Winner

As you consider the future of your digital and document management strategies, it’s important to weigh the pros and cons of each service provider. While Worldox provides a sufficient DMS solution for the cloud, NetDocuments is the clear winner with a cloud-native solution that gives you a platform for seamless, inspired work.

Ready to make the switch? Here’s how to get started.