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Intuit — Lacerte Document Management System

From the April/May 2006 Review of
Document Management Systems

This application is designed primarily as an add-on application for the Lacerte
tax preparation software. As such, its value is significantly increased if you
are using both applications. Lacerte DMS is very simple in its design and is
a practical solution for the small firm or sole practitioner.

Installation & Configuration — 4 Stars
Lacerte DMS is designed as a desktop application and utilizes a database for
storing the document files. The database can be configured for storage on the
local PC or as a shared database on a network server. In either configuration,
the software is installed on each computer. There are no specific hardware requirements
beyond a typical Windows-based software application, other than extended storage

User Interface — 4 Stars
The interface follows the same look and feel as the Lacerte tax software interface.
The organization of document files is client centric. Each client has a folder
structure established, similar to Windows Explorer folders. Folder templates
can be established and assigned to clients as appropriate. In addition to the
documents, each client folder has a client information tab and an issues tab.
A third-party application serves as a built-in *.PDF viewer, which allows you
to view *.PDF files and apply annotations. This tool also provides integration
with any MAPI-compliant e-mail system. Documents can be sent with or without
annotations. The scan window allows you to view a scanned document in thumbnail
view and reorder, rename and bookmark pages.

Integration — 4 Stars
The strongest integration is with Lacerte Tax and Intuit’s ProSeries tax
software. The client list from Lacerte is directly imported to Lacerte DMS.
The integration between the tax software’s printing engine and Lacerte
DMS is well designed and easy to use. No integration with other accountant-centric
applications is available other than through a print to Lacerte DMS print driver.

Training & Support — 4 Stars
The services provided by Lacerte are appropriate for this relatively simplistic
system. Support is handled by the same group that provides Lacerte’s tax
software support. Telephone and e-mail support are available. Training is delivered
via webinar presentations.

Workflow & Document Tracking — N/A Stars
Lacerte DMS is not currently designed to provide workflow automation. As a result,
there is nothing to evaluate in this category.

Security — 4 Stars
A database-level password is the first line of security. In addition, each client
can have a unique password applied to his or her files. Individual users can
be assigned various rights to access, edit and delete documents. An optional
activity log tracks activity by type, user, date and time.

Pricing — 5 Stars
Perhaps the most compelling feature of Lacerte DMS is the pricing. A single
annual fee of $450, regardless of the number of users, makes it one of the most
affordable solutions reviewed here.

Relative Value — 4 Stars
If you are a small firm or sole practitioner already using Lacerte or Intuit’s
ProSeries tax software, this solution should be given serious consideration.
If you are using another tax software solution, the simplicity of this system
makes it a viable alternative for small firms. However, it is limited in its
integration capabilities.

2006 Overall Rating — 4 Stars