I’ve been doing a series of reviews on a range of document management solutions, from expense reporting, to receipt scanning, to document collection. Today I’ll be looking at LedgerDocs, which I can best describe as a tool to collect documents for accounting professionals.
What exactly does LedgerDocs do? It:
- Allows you to collect documents via web upload, email, scan, or mobile device; essentially it’s an online place to gather financial documents.
- Organizes documents using an inbox, folders, and tags.
- Allows you to request documents and has a scheduled reminder system.
- Can securely share documents with others.
- Will work with various file formats, such as: PDF, JPG, PNG, HTML, DOCX, XLS, andPPT.
On the other hand, LedgerDocs does not:
- Have data extraction. There’s no service, automated or human, that will extract information.
- Pull documents from online accounts, such as your utility or cell phone bills.
- Have many data input fields. It does have a few fields that show up when you connect it to QuickBooks Online, but by default, there’s not much data you can add or collect about the documents.
Now that we know what it can and cannot do, let’s take a closer look at the software.
LedgerDocs has a fairly simple interface. Your folders are on your left, and your documents are on your right. You can switch the views between thumbnail or list, and if you click on a document, you’ll be shown a pop-up with a full-screen view of the doc.
Something I would have liked to see is the ability to drag and drop documents from the right-hand side into the left-hand folders. However, as you can see from the screenshot below, you are able to perform batch actions by selecting documents and right-clicking them.
While not permitting dragging and dropping, it does allow you to easily process many documents at a time. Reviewing other software, I’ve found that the ability to batch edit documents is not always possible, so I was happy to see that LedgerDocs does have this ability.
When you click on a document, you’ll get a full-screen view.
As you can see in the full-screen view above, there’s not that much you can do with a document. You can rename it, tag it, file it, share it, and add a note. Unlike receipt-capturing software like Receipt Bank or Expensify, this is not a tool designed to scrape information from the docs and push them to your accounting software. Instead, it’s an online document collection and management solution.
That being said, it does have an integration with QuickBooks Online, which — when enabled — allows you to collect and publish the transactions as a QuickBooks Online Bill, Invoice, or Expense.
Something I find lacking in many document management software I’ve looked at is the ability to do anything beyond a simple search. While LedgerDocs does offer a simple search box, it also has an advanced search that lets you fine tune exactly what you’re searching for.
LedgerDocs only connects with Dropbox and QuickBooks Online. In comparison to its competitors, it doesn’t have many.
The Dropbox integrations works by replicating the LedgerDocs inbox folder in your Dropbox. The purpose of this folder is to be used as a way to get documents into your LedgerDocs inbox. Once you move those files from the inbox in LedgerDocs, they’ll be deleted from Dropbox. So, the integration is purely for getting documents into LedgerDocs, and is not a storage solution for all your LedgerDocs files and folders. I want to emphasize this distinction, because other software solutions do have an integration with Dropbox that does mirror the contents and acts as a sort of backup.
The QuickBooks Online integration allows LedgerDocs to push Invoices, Bills, and Expenses to the software.
LedgerDocs is focused on one thing, which is collecting and organizing financial documents. In that task, it does a good job. There are many ways to get the documents in, organizing them is easy enough, you’re able to use sub-folders and tags, and the search is better than most similar software out there. So if that’s exactly what you need, this is the solution for you.
Where I find the software doesn’t have enough value-add for me, is in its lack of integrations and its inability to add more information to the documents. For example, while there is a notes section, I want the chance to mark up the documents — like I can with PDFs that are on my computer.
While I wouldn’t necessarily use the service to push documents to QuickBooks Online, I would like to see more input fields available, such as amount, date, contact name, and so on. You can rename files to include that information, but I find that a little messy. The same can be said for adding notes.
I consider bank feeds to be the most reliable way of entering transaction data into accounting software, so I don’t really care too much that LedgerDocs doesn’t offer a way to extract data from the documents for the purposes of pushing it out to accounting software. However, since I think that LedgerDocs can be a good repository for audits and for double-checking bigger ticket items, I would like to see certain data automatically extracted, such as contact name, date, and amount. This would make it easy to search the document when necessary.
A service that is kind of similar to LedgerDocs is the software that shares part of its name: Hubdoc. Funnily enough, where LedgerDocs falls short, Hubdoc excels, and vice versa. Hubdoc is great at pulling in documents through online feeds and does an OK job at using OCR to extract data and enter it into data fields. However, I find Hubdoc’s search, bulk edit, and organization to be lacking. Honestly, if the two services merged and retained the best of each, the result would be a much better overall solution for the collection and management of documents.