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NetDocuments Review

NetDocuments is document management software used by law firms and other industries. It is a central, cloud-based platform to store and share documents for your law firm.

Pricing: Not Transparent. See NetDocuments pricing.

Features & Scope
Ease of Use
Mobility / Work Anywhere
Desktop OS Compatibility
Server / Infrastructure Requirements

NetDocuments Review for Law Firms

In our extensive NetDocuments review, we’ll cover features, pricing, implementation and alternatives for law firms.

Document Management often lives at the epicenter of a law firm’s technology, housing all of the firm’s important, matter-related documents, email and other content.

Especially as law firms grow to to 5 or more total staff, the need for a robust, capable Document Management System grows.

At Uptime Legal, we help law firms evaluate legal software, implement new technology and move their firm’s to the cloud.

In this article, we’ll provide a comprehensive review of NetDocuments, a document management product used by law firms. We’ll explore features, benefits, drawbacks, pricing, user feedback, alternatives, and more.


Introduction to Legal Document Management

A Document Management System (DMS) is software that, to varying degrees, helps businesses manage their documents, email and other data.

The scope, features and capabilities of any given Document Management application varies from product to product; though broadly speaking, Document Management software performs the following functions:

Core Features

  • Document Storage
  • Document Organization
  • Microsoft Office Integration
  • Email Management
  • Full-Text Search
  • Document Version Management
  • Unique Document ID's
  • Document Tagging / Profiling

Beyond these core DMS features, some Document Management applications provide additional functionality and provide greater security features. These may include:

Advanced Features

  • Integrated OCR
  • Client Portal / Client Sharing
  • Client/Matter Structure
  • Outlook Integration

Advanced Security

  • User/Group Permissions
  • MFA (Multi-Factor Authentication)
  • End-to-End Data Encryption
  • Geographic Data Redundancy

RelatedBest Legal Document Management Software: Explore the top DMS products used by law firms today.

Sidebar: Document Management vs Practice Management

Document Management software slightly overlaps (and is sometimes confused with) Practice Management software.

Document Management software and Practice Management software are, however, fundamentally different categories of legal software.

Your firm may need one, the other, or both.


NetDocuments Review – The Company

Before we get into the meat of our NetDocuments review, we’ll start with a (brief) history of the company.

NetDocuments was founded in 1999, and to their credit they were one of the first true cloud-based, online document management platforms. The company was later acquired by a private equity firm, where it continued to grow and serve industries including healthcare, financial services, law firms, and corporate legal departments.

Today the company and the product remain prevalent and has a large network of resellers throughout most markets.

Document Management Software Review

Overview of the NetDocuments Software

Next in our NetDocuments review, we’ll provide a high-level overview of the software.

Highlights

  • NetDocuments is used by a variety of industries, including legal, financial services and manufacturing.
  • Being web-based, NetDocuments does not require an on-premise server, nor does it require software installation.
  • NetDocuments also includes ndOffice, its software for Microsoft Office integration.
  • NetDocuments does not work on Mac computers, apart from using Parallels to run a full Windows installation.
  • NetDocuments requires hiring a third-party consultant/reseller to implement the software.

Additional Information

NetDocuments is a general-purpose, cloud-based document storage and management system.

Because the software is made to fit a range of different industries (not just law firms), it’s general enough that it can be fitted for a number of different kinds of businesses.

The software is mostly (but not entirely) cloud based. Users access NetDocuments primarily via a web browser (as with most SaaS applications); no server required.

NetDocuments works well on Windows PC’s namely via its Office add-in, called ndOffice.

ndOffice is an installed, desktop component that allows users to save documents directly to NetDocuments (which is nice).

ndOffice, however, is only available for Windows, and doesn’t work on Macs. Which means if your firm uses Mac computers, you’ll have to use Parallels or similar software to run a Windows instance within your Mac computer.


NetDocuments Alternatives

If NetDocuments doesn’t suit your law firm, you might consider these popular alternatives.

imanage logo

iManage Work

Server-dependent DMS for large law firms.

Learn more.

lexworkplace logo

LexWorkplace

Cloud-based, intuitive DMS with full support.

Learn more.

Worldox Logo Compressed

Worldox

Traditional, server-based DMS for law firms.

Learn more.

RelatedTop 5 NetDocuments Alternatives: Explore the top 5 alternatives to NetDocuments, including features, setup and pricing.

LexWorkplace Top Features

Cloud-based Document Management

  • Secure Cloud Storage
  • Client/Matter-Centric Org
  • Full-Text Document Search
  • Secure Client Sharing
  • MS Office Add-In
  • Email Management
  • Windows + Mac Compatible

NetDocuments Review – Feature List

Next in our NetDocuments review, we’ll expand on the individual features included (and omitted) in the software.

Document Storage

Basic inline storage of documents including Word, Excel, PDF and other file types.

Native Cloud

The software is natively cloud-based, and run in a web browser without the need for remote desktops, hosting, or other work-arounds.

Document Organization

Organization of documents beyond simple folders.  NetDocuments organizes documents and content by Workspace.

Microsoft Office Integration

Direct integration with Microsoft Word and Outlook for seamless document editing.

Email Management

The ability to save, organize and manage emails to a project or folder similar to a document.

Full-Text Search

The ability to search across the content and metadata for all documents and email.

Document Version Management

The ability to maintain multiple versions of a document, or view prior versions of documents.

Unique Document ID

Each document is assigned a unique, permanent ID for trackability and integrity.

Document Tagging / Profiling

The ability to classify, annotate and categorize documents (for example:  designate a document as a contract, or motion, or order).

Client Portal / Sharing

The ability to securely share or send documents to clients or other outside parties.

Client / Matter Organization

The concept of Clients and Matters, and the ability to organize data by client/matter.

User / Group Permissions

The ability to create user groups and assign permissions to specific users and groups.

Windows Compatible

Compatible with the Windows operating system.

Mac Compatible

Compatible with Mac OS.

Data Encryption

Data is encrypted in-transit and at-rest.

Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA)

Application supports Multi-Factor Authentication for added security.

Geographic Data Redundancy

Data is automatically backed up to redundant servers/data centers in different geographic regions.

Company-Provided Onboarding

Does the software company provide data migration and training directly (or must the user obtain a third-party resource for onboarding).

Office 365 Provided / Supported

Is Office 365 optionally provided and supported to provide a single, seamless user and support experience.

IT Support Provided

Is general IT support optionally provided to create a single, seamless user and support experience.

Storage Included

Default Storage Included in Plan:  1 GB / User


NetDocuments Review – Additional Components

Further in our NetDocuments review, we’ll explore additional functionality and nuances to the NetDocuments software.

Workspaces

In NetDocuments, you create a workspace, which serves as the top-level container to store documents and other kinds of data.

A workspace is, essentially, a top-level folder that you can create subfolders in (so-named to accommodate the needs of a variety of types of organizations). Law firms can use the concept of a workspace to loosely relate to a particular client or matter in which to store files in.

ndMail

NetDocuments also includes an option for ndMail, the Outlook add-in that allows you to save emails to the NetDocuments repository. ndMail is also Windows-only (no Mac support).

SetBuilder

SetBuilder, a new NetDocuments add-on, streamlines document management for attorneys by compiling multiple documents into a single, shareable PDF.

This feature is particularly helpful for real estate lawyers during closings, where a high volume of documents is involved, thus saving time and reducing the risk of errors that may arise from manual assembly.

NetDocuments Screenshots

(Click to Enlarge)


NetDocuments Pros

Next in our NetDocuments review, we’ll explore the advantages of the software, and reasons your law firm may want to consider implementing it.

Cloud-based

NetDocuments is cloud-based, which means you can access it from anywhere, and do not need to maintain in-house servers.

Better Than Basic Files & Folders

NetDocuments provides features to organize, classify and search documents, which is inherently better than a basic folder structure.

Better Than Simple Cloud Storage

NetDocuments is an improvement over simple cloud storage tools like Dropbox, OneDrive and Google Drive.

Legal Software Integration

NetDocuments integrates with certain law practice management software.


NetDocuments Cons

Next in our NetDocuments review, we’ll explore the drawbacks of the software, and reasons your law firm may want want to consider other options.

No Native Mac OS Support

All of the NetDocuments components do not work natively on Mac OS.  If your firm uses Macs, you'll need to either replace them with Windows computers, or implement Parallels to run a virtual Windows instance on your Mac.

Migration & Training Performed by a Third-Party

NetDocuments will not help you migrate data or provide any software training.  Instead, they will require that you hire a third-party "consultant" (reseller) to perform all conversion and training.  User reviews of third-party consultants are mixed.

Non-Transparent Pricing

NetDocuments does not publish the pricing for its software publicly, nor do they provide guidance on typical migration or onboarding costs (performed by a third party).

No Options for Office, Exchange & IT Support

Many law firms prefer to have their Office 365, Exchange Email, IT support and Document Management System provided and supported by one company, to avoid integration problems and technology finger-pointing.  NetDocuments does not provide Office 365, Exchange Email, or IT support services, and will instead recommend you obtain a separate IT consultant.

No Client / Matter Structure

Because its made for many industries, NetDocuments does not have a concept of "Clients" or "Matters."  Instead, you must create a "Workspace," and retro-fit workspaces and folders to approximate a Client/Matter structure.

Bring Law and Order to Your Documents

LexWorkplace Includes:

  • Structured by Client/Matter
  • Document Profiling / Metadata
  • Organize With Folders and Tags
  • Save Emails to Matters
  • Built-In Version Management
  • Add Notes to Docs & Email

Helpful NetDocuments Reviews

Next, we’ve collected and aggregated NetDocuments user reviews from a variety of online communities.  These reviews represent an accurate sample of actual law firm users that have used the NetDocuments product.

“Hit or Miss”

  • Verified User in Law Practice
  • Review Source:  G2
  • Rating:  3/5 Stars

“My favorite things about NetDocuments is that 1) you can access your documents from any place with an Internet connection, and 2) there is an easy way to search for documents.

Like everything else, there are a few downfalls.  First of al there needs to be a multi-level search function added.  Also, I dislike the fact that you have to jump through hoops to get documents to do what you want.  For example, at work I can click on a document and it opens for viewing/editing.  At home I click on a document and it downloads it, then I have to go through the process of uploading the changed document.

I like it, but a lot of people I work with do not like NetDocuments.”


“Good price, but still working through the bugs”

  • Verified User in Law Practice ; 51-200 Employees
  • Review Source:  GetApp
  • Rating:  3/5 Stars

“Shareholder wanted a cloud based system. We are still working through the bugs and hope with new versions coming out it will be able to integrate better with office options.

Pros:  Cloud based and a good price.

Cons:  Downloads are slow and the checking in documents automatically is only working have the time. We have to do a lot of check in manually.”


“NetDocuments for my law firm.”

  • Verified User in Law Practice ; 10-50 Employees
  • Review Source:  G2 Crowd
  • Rating:  3.5/5 Stars

“I like that this helps eliminate paper waste by placing all documents into an electronic form and sorting it into subject folders so that users may somewhat easily find the documents in the specific matter needed.

ND needs more subfolders so that it is easier to specify a particular type of document or pleading.  As it currently stands, there are just general/broad subject folders to place your particular document in.  There is also not a calendar feature or a way to document deadlines for specific projects in a particular matter.”


1-Star

“NetDocuments – Only meant for about 5 users”

  • Verified User in Law Practice ; 10-50 Employees
  • Review Source:  Software Advice
  • Rating:  1/5 Stars

“It was horrendously slow. We have about 40 users and imported documents from another document management service. It was much much slower to search and the way it searches was really bad.”


“Difficult to use, Expensive, but Secure”

  • Verified User in Law Practice ; 2-10 Employees
  • Review Source:  Software Advice
  • Rating:  5/5 Stars

“Pros: How secure our files are. Both security and dynamic version management are superb features.

Cons: How clunky and difficult to use it is. Also, how difficult it is to learn, especially the admin side – it’s like doing things on DOS – you have to know what you’re doing. It’s not intuitive at all.”


“Useful, but hard to navigate.”

  • Verified User in Law Practice ; 10-50 Employees
  • Review Source:  G2
  • Rating:  2/5 Stars

I like that I can access my documents through the cloud based service.  However, I don’t think it’s exactly user friendly, and have found that the updates take along time, about every quarter often when I am using the program.

I am able to access important legal forms and real estate documents without having to bring the physical version to a closing or meeting, but would say that there are better options more suited to lawyers out there.”


“Good and bad.”

  • Verified User in Law Practice ; 51-200 Employees
  • Review Source:  Software Advice
  • Rating:  3/5 Stars

“I feel confident our data is secure in Netdocuments.

Unfortunately my users, paralegals and attorneys do not find the interface usable, or ability to share files externally impossible.”


1-Star

“Could be great but falls short.”

  • Verified User in Law Practice ; 10-50 Employees
  • Review Source:  GetApp
  • Rating:  1/5 Stars

“Pros: The e-mail integration is awesome, when it works. We run into too many issues to where it loses a connection or fails to uploaded an e-mail.

Cons: Each update makes the system slower and slower. Every time they update their website, a feature breaks and they have to go back and fix it. Hold times for tech support and times can be a little ridiculous.”


“Solid Document tool for Larger companies.”

  • Verified User in Law Practice ; 200+ Employees
  • Review Source:  Gartner
  • Rating:  4/5 Stars

“NetDocuments has aged well along with our growing firm. However, the security need to be upgraded to handle security threats. It provides frequent updates which isn’t necessarily a good thing as we need a more stable product than a innovative product. Should be HTTPS compliant.”


NetDocuments Pricing

As mentioned above, NetDocuments does not provide public pricing information, for the software, for implementation, per-user fees or storage.

However, we work with many customers and consultants of NetDocuments, and have compiled typical ranges for both implementation and monthly pricing for NetDocuments.

For more information, see:

RelatedNetDocuments Pricing: Since NetDocuments lacks transparent pricing, we’ve done some work to compile that information for you.


Document Management Software Comparisons

As you’re deciding whether NetDocuments is right for your firm, and evaluating legal document management software altogether, it’s helpful to compare top contenders to determine which software satisfies the qualities you seek.

The ideal DMS should seamlessly integrate into a law firm’s workflow, enhance productivity, and ensure security and compliance.

However, with numerous options available, the decision can be daunting.

So, let’s delve into a comparative analysis of NetDocuments with other leading DMS solutions, highlighting the strengths and weaknesses of each software to empower law firms in making an informed choice that aligns with their unique needs and challenges.

Related Video

Exploring document management products?  Watch our short video on the top legal document management platforms for law firms.

LexWorkplace

Uptime Logo

LexWorkplace is legal-centric, cloud-based document and email management software.

LexWorkplace Screenshot 2 Compressed
Features & Scope
Ease of Use
Mobility / Work Anywhere
Desktop OS Compatibility
Server / Infrastructure Requirements

Pricing: Starts at $395 / month for a 3-User Plan.


Key Features

  • Store Files / Folders
  • Secure Sharing
  • Full-Text Search
  • Version Management
  • Profiling / Tagging
  • Email Management
  • Document Check-Out
  • One Click Save-Back
  • User Permissions
  • Data Encryption

Full ReviewLexWorkplace WebsiteWatch Demo

Related7 Reasons to Switch from NetDocuments to LexWorkplace: Not loving NetDocuments? Here are 7 reasons your law firm should make the switch.

Worldox

Worldox Logo Compressed

Worldox is long-running, server-based legal document management software.

Worldox Screenshot
Features & Scope
Ease of Use
Mobility / Work Anywhere
Desktop OS Compatibility
Server / Infrastructure Requirements

Pricing: $425 per user license + $88 / User / Year


Key Features

  • Store Files / Folders
  • Full-Text Search
  • Version Management
  • Profiling / Tagging
  • Email Management
  • User Permissions

Worldox Full ReviewWorldox WebsiteHosted Worldox

RelatedWorldox vs NetDocuments: Compare these two systems to see what fits your firms’ needs the best.

RelatedWorldox to NetDocuments: With the recent acquisition, Worldox users are left with the option of migrating to NetDocuments or going elsewhere.

iManage Work

iManage Logo

iManage Work is server-based document management and knowledge management software.

iManage Screenshot
Features & Scope
Ease of Use
Mobility / Work Anywhere
Desktop OS Compatibility
Server / Infrastructure Requirements

Pricing: Not Provided by Publisher (Reseller Required)


Key Features

  • Store Files / Folders
  • Full-Text Search
  • Version Management
  • Profiling / Tagging
  • Email Management
  • User Permissions

iManage Full ReviewiManage Website

RelatediManage vs NetDocuments: Compare these two systems to see what fits your firms’ needs the best.

SharePoint

SharePoint Logo

SharePoint is Microsoft’s general Document Management and Intranet platform.

Sharepoint Screenshot
Features & Scope
Ease of Use
Mobility / Work Anywhere
Desktop OS Compatibility
Server / Infrastructure Requirements

Pricing: SharePoint Online starts at $5 / User / Month


Key Features

  • Store Files / Folders
  • Full-Text Search
  • Version Management
  • Profiling / Tagging
  • Email Management
  • User Permissions

SharePoint Full ReviewSharePoint Website

DMS Comparison Chart

If this section comparing your options for document management seems like too much, no worries!

We have a solution.

We compiled information of your options above into a handy comparison chart.

Curious? Here’s a taste:

Document Management Software Comparison Chart
DMS Chart Featured Image (1)

Did you find it helpful? See the full comparison chart by downloading it below.

Get the Chart →

Next Steps

Having explored the diverse landscape of document management software, you’re now equipped with valuable insights to make a well-informed decision.

If you’re considering LexWorkplace or another system and need further guidance, we’re here to help.

Contact us for a personalized consultation to discuss your firm’s specific needs and how our solutions can streamline your document management processes.


Frequently Asked Questions

NetDocuments questions frequently asked by law firms.

NetDocuments is cloud-based document management software used by a variety of industries.

NetDocuments does not make their pricing publicly available.  However, we’ve compiled currently known pricing from NetDocuments users and consultants.  For more information, see NetDocuments Pricing.

As a cloud-based DMS, NetDocuments can help your law firm organize documents, email and other kinds of data.  It provides document search, version management and other tools that law firms find useful.

No, NetDocuments is Windows-based software and does not work on Mac computers.  Users of Macs can run NetDocuments by implementing Parallels, and running a Windows Virtual Machine on their Mac.  Doing so requires switching back and forth from your Mac and Windows desktops.

NetDocuments allows you to share documents within your system with outside parties, including clients and other attorneys.

This depends on your law firm’s interpretation of ‘e-Discovery Software.’  NetDocuments is a DMS, and not designed to be a formal e-Discovery platform.  However, if your e-Discovery needs are light, NetDocuments may serve this purpose.

NetDocuments is not plug-and-play, and the implementation process is not insignificant.  For this reason, NetDocuments will assign new customers to a local reseller/consultant for implementation, including data migration and training.

Popular NetDocuments alternatives for law firms include LexWorkplace, Worldox and iManage.  For more information, explore our Top NetDocuments Alternatives.

Looking for Document Management Software?

LexWorkplace:

Modern Document Management for Law Firms

LexWorkplace is document & email management software, born in the cloud and built for law firms.  Here’s a quick primer on how it works.

Organize by Client & Matter

Organize documents, email and notes by client or matter. Store and manage all data for a case or project in one place.

lexworkplace-matter-centric

Go Beyond Basic Files & Folders

Supercharge your firm’s productivity with true DMS functions.

  • Version Management
  • Document Tagging & Profiling
  • Document Check-Out / Check-In
  • Microsoft Office Integration
  • Convert Word Docs to PDF
Document Properties

Search Everything

LexWorkplace is like Google for your law firm.  Search across millions of pages, documents, folder email and notes in seconds. Refine your search by matter, document type, author and more.

Search-2021

Search by…

  • Client or Matter
  • Document Type (Contract, Complaint, Order, etc.)
  • Document Status (Draft, Final, etc.)
  • Document Tags (Filed With Court, Fully Executed, etc.)

Outlook Integration + Comprehensive Email Management

Save emails to a matter without leaving Outlook. Saved emails are accessible to your entire team, organized and searchable.

lx-email-mgmt
  • Outlook Add-In that Works With Windows and Macs
  • Save Entire, Original Email to a Matter in a LexWorkplace
  • Email De-Duplication
  • Organize Emails into Folders, Subfolders

Works with Windows and Macs

All of LexWorkplace is compatible with both Windows and Mac computers.

What Clients Say

Lawyers love LexWorkplace.  See how the system streamlined one lawyer’s practice.

Watch the 5-Minute Demo

See LexWorkplace in action in our quick 5-minute overview and demonstration.

Or, if you want a one-on-one demo, or want to talk about LexWorkplace for your firm, schedule a call or demo below.

Schedule a Demo