Workshare Compare, now known as Litera Compare, is a document comparison software that detects changes across two versions of a document, most often legal documents. For years, it has been the most popular choice for legal teams as a standalone comparison software and a Microsoft Word extension. Litera acquired the software company in 2019 and integrated it into Litera’s suite of products.
This article covers Workshare Compare as a product, what happened following Litera’s acquisition, and alternatives worth considering in 2024.
Workshare Compare is designed to help professionals compare documents in the revision and editing process. It is often used for legal documents where multiple parties are involved.
You can compare DOCX and DOC files (Microsoft Word), RFT files (Revit), and PDF files in Workshare Compare. Since the Litera acquisition, more file types, like PowerPoint (PPT), have been added.
You can download the application on MacOS or Windows computers, and it works online and offline.
Two options are available.
Option 1 - Right-click on closed PDF or Word documents and click “Compare with Workshare.”
Option 2 - Open Workshare on your desktop computer, click “New,” then add two documents, previous versions and modified versions.
Once a comparison is executed, you can quickly identify differences between 2 documents using either the change summary or the standalone application.
Deletions are in red 🔴, and additions are in blue 🔵.
Workshare lets you scroll through the document or perform essential search functions to find specific sections, as well as use the sidebar to filter based on particular types of edits.
To update your document with edits surfaced by running a comparison, the only way to do it with Workshare Compare is to save your document as a Word file and implement the changes shown in the Redline document using Microsoft Word’s track changes functionality.
Most legal professionals save their files in Document Management Systems like iManage.
Workshare does have integrations with most DMS providers. Open your iManage work in Workshare by right-clicking a file on your desktop and selecting “Compare in Workshare.”
Lawyers are notorious for not handling change well. What they appreciate about Workshare Compare over the years is the ability to run comparisons in Word.
You can do it using the Workshare tab in the Microsoft Office applications toolbar. The added value comes from not having to export from your comparison tool to Word to accept or reject changes. When done, simply hit save.
Workshare used to cost under the 20$ per user per month mark. However, Litera has gradually increased its price following the acquisition.
If you purchase the entry-level Compare software from Litera’s website, prices start at $425 per user per year.
Law firms have reported increasing volatility in Litera Compare’s pricing, ranging from a few hundred dollars to 6-figure contracts.
Litera Compare includes a wide range of features. A hidden cost, however, associated with Litera Compare is the need to purchase multiple Litera products to complete legal workflows. For example, comparing documents most likely involves flagging errors and editing PDFs, which require 2 additional Litera licenses (view screenshot below).
That’s the big question. And the story is all too common in Legaltech.
▶️ A new legal tech startup creates a novel solution for a problem lawyers face.
▶️ As soon as they reach mass-market adoption, they’re bought by an established legacy player.
▶️ Instead of continuing to innovate, the acquirer either 1. slowly shuts down the new product or 2. integrates the acquired software in its suite of products, followed by pricing increases and slowed-down improvements.
That’s what happened to Workshare Compare. Note that the same happened to DeltaView a few years prior.
Reviews for Litera Compare (formerly Workshare Compare) are mitigated. They range from decade-old fans to frustrated users concerned about where the software is going.
Read the reviews below or head to G2, Capterra, or Gartner to learn what people think.
Litera products are notoriously expensive, ranging from a few hundred dollars to hundreds of thousands of dollars, depending on your firm’s size, needs, and what your Litera representative has had for breakfast 😅.
Relating to pricing, transparency, or lack thereof, is the most frequent comment regarding Workshare/Litera.
It seems like every Workshare customer is paying a different price, resulting in law firms being unable to accurately predict costs.
Head to social media or read reviews online. You’ll see a barrage of comments about Workshare Compare’s customer service.
The TLDR: The more you pay, the more enhanced your support becomes. That’s not how you build confidence with customers.
Innovation often slows when a tech company is acquired due to the larger acquirer's bureaucratic processes and focus on short-term financial goals.
This shift can hinder the agile, creative culture of smaller tech firms, which seems to be the case at Workshare/Litera.
When considering a replacement for Workshare, it’s best to think about:
The tools mentioned below are ranked based on a combination of both, meaning that they have the potential to both provide novel capabilities and alleviate some of the pains associated with Workshare Compare.
You can find a list of 11 of the best Litera alternatives here 👈.
Macro is an all-in-one Word and PDF editor that legal professionals use to draft, review, edit, and compare legal documents.
Its modern and simple interface makes using the software game-changing for legal teams.
Capabilities like – defined terms interlinking, error detection, and AI-enhanced writing are where Macro stands out from the crowd in the drafting process.
Remember the last time you tried to find the most up-to-date version of a document in your email inbox?
Macro solves this issue with the most advanced document comparison tool. With Macro's Compare feature, you can upload as many document versions as you like and color code redlines from each party involved in the editing process.
Give Macro Compare a try below 👇
Once you hit “Compare,” Macro will return a consolidated version of the documents, along with all redactions, edits, and text movement. You can then approve or reject amendments, prepare the document’s final version, and export it to DOCX or PDF for execution.
Litera asks attorneys to export backlines into Word to consolidate edits.
With Macro, you can accept or reject changes directly within the document. If you need colleagues to act, you can add comments and turn on “track changes” mode so they can see what you’ve done.
Lawyers spend their days reviewing long documents.
One problem they face is reading and understanding PDFs, which involves scrolling through hundreds of pages and manually bookmarking important information.
Macro comes with automated interlinking and bookmarks. Simply click on terms to read their definitions or navigate sections with auto-generated bookmarks.
✔️ Unique in its capability to compare more than two documents simultaneously.
✔️ User-friendly interface, facilitating quick adaptation to the platform.
✔️ Compatible with both PDF and DOCX file formats. Can save to DMS.
✔️ Streamlines consolidation processes with advanced navigation and quick accept/reject options.
❌ Lacks an online, browser-based version.
❌ Absence of a permanent free plan.
Macro has a 14-day free trial for both Windows and Mac.
If you need more advanced features and support, upgrade to Macro's Professional version for $49/user per month or contact Macro’s sales team.
Draftable is an innovative document comparison software designed for legal professionals and others who need to review and manage different document types. It stands out as an affordable and effective alternative to Litera, offering a range of features.
✔️ Supports a wide range of file types for comprehensive comparisons.
✔️ Monitors both textual and formatting changes for thorough document analysis.
✔️ Accessible trial version directly from the Draftable website.
❌ Inability to simultaneously compare various document versions.
❌ Predominantly Windows-based, potentially limiting for non-Windows users.
❌ Lacks extensive document management features that some competitors offer.
❌ User interface and features may present a learning curve.
Draftable provides several pricing plans:
Version Story is a new platform for document comparison and version control for legal and research professionals. It offers a modern approach, positioning itself as a potential competitor to Litera, though its market presence is still growing.
✔️ Hosted in the cloud for easy access and scalability.
✔️ Simplifies handling multiple versions of documents.
✔️ Fosters collaborative work in drafting and revising documents.
❌ Limited customization, which may not fit every legal firm's needs.
❌ Online-only customer support through tickets, potentially inconvenient for urgent matters.
❌ Limited usage among firms, raising questions about its effectiveness.
❌ Direct contact with sales is required to trial Version Story and obtain pricing.
Pricing details for Version Story are available upon request, necessitating a demo to gain complete insight. As mentioned, the company is in its early stages.
Made it all the way down here? You must be serious about finding the right document comparison software for your firm or business.
We’re biased, but here are resources to help you decide: