PerfectIt isn’t a grammar or spell checker like Grammarly; it works differently and for a distinct purpose. It’s a proofreading tool that assists professionals and technical writers in finding inconsistencies in their work.
What does that mean, and why would lawyers, medical writers, technology experts, and academic writers prefer using PerfectIt than one of its alternatives?
In this PerfectIt review, we explored PerfectIt’s features to understand why Daniel Heuman, CEO of Intelligent Editing, felt a need to develop PerfectIt as a better solution for editing professionals’ work. Is it a tool for everyone or only for certain professions? How can PerfectIt help you or your editor?
What Is PerfectIt And What Does It Do?
PerfectIt is a proofreading solution Daniel Heuman launched in 2009 to help writers and professionals edit academic papers, business reports, and legal documents. PerfectIt acknowledges that a human editor is the best. PerfectIt uses an algorithm; a computer cannot always detect the subtle nuances and rules of the English language; it needs the human’s judgment to accept or reject the suggestion.
Therefore, PerfectIt was designed not to replace a human editor but to assist a copy editor in proofreading faster and more effectively. It is not a spelling and grammar checker but the final editing experience that checks for consistency errors before submitting manuscripts to publishers or finalizing legal documents.
Who Should Use PerfectIt?
PerfectIt is designed to save time for professionals who spend hours checking and double-checking a document for typos and mistakes. The product focuses on finding those problematic consistency errors; the proofreading solution highlights the inconsistencies and gives writers several options to fix these mistakes.
- Lawyers who use American Legal Style or a house style for their legal documents.
- Medical writers and technical writers can’t afford misinterpretation because of a typo or missing superscript or subscript in commonly used technical terms and formulas.
- Professionals like engineers, proposal managers, technology experts, and researchers using proofreading tools based on their company or profession’s house style sheet.
- Editors using the suggestions to highlight details like hyphenation, spelling variations, and other inconsistencies.
- Anyone who understands the benefits of proofreading software.
Is It Easy to Use PerfectIt?
Free Trial Version
If you never used PerfectIt before, you can download the free trial without giving any details or subscribing with credit card details. PerfectIt 4 automatically downloads and installs to your desktop. They send helpful emails to get started with the product and a monthly newsletter with tips and news.
One Place, No Confusion
Suggestions for document improvement appear in a left sidebar explaining the error found, selecting options, fixing or fixing all buttons, and the next button. For example, one of my headings had “for” written in small letters. When checking the headings’ capitalization, PerfectIt gave me two options: “Smart, capitals for titles” or “All start in capitals.” I chose the option I preferred, and with “fix-all,” made corrections throughout the document. Alternatively, I could’ve selected only the words or phrases I wanted to be changed.
Error Location In Documents
PerfectIt indicates where in the document the error is, making it easier to double-check context before changing the word or phrase. It takes one mouse click to fix all or selected errors.
Easy To Use Interface
All the information is in the sidebar. You don’t have to search for a thing; it’s all there. The user-friendly interface is easy to use without needing any training to figure out what is where. However, for users who like demos and guides, the product has easy-to-understand user guides about all the features in PerfectIt and how to create customized style sheets with the style sheet editor.
House Style Sheet Saves Time
The program checks consistency errors according to house styles, saving editors time and their clients’ money. PerfectIt has built-in house styles of professions, countries, and organizations. Select any of these house styles in the dropdown or customize your style sheet:
- American Legal Style
- European Union Style
- United Nations Style
- WHO Style
- GPO Style
The program also has a speller dictionary for English dialects of four countries:
- American English
- British English
- Canadian English
- Australian English
PerfectIt Products And Integrations
PerfectIt 4 is the latest desktop op and works offline like PerfectIt 3 and older versions.
- PerfectIt 4 is only for computers with Windows. The add-in works with Microsoft Word 2007 and above. The desktop app works offline and doesn’t function online, linked to a server.
- PerfectIt Cloud works with Microsoft Office 365, 2016, 2019, and above. It integrates with your computer, iPad, and Word Online. PerfectIt Cloud is downloaded from the Microsoft Office Store.
- Mac users should use PerfectIt Cloud.
- PerfectIt 3, 2, and 1 has been replaced by the faster PerfectIt 4. Customers with PerfectIt 3 and older version licenses will receive support up to one year after their purchase.
How Can PerfectIt Help You
PerfectIt shows you where it found the errors in your work, helping you to edit intelligently by considering the content’s context. It checks for difficult-to-find consistency errors a spelling and grammar checker may miss.
Hyphenation And Dashes
The hyphenation and dashes tool checks for hyphenated and compound words, hyphenated phrases, and en dashes with hyphenated phrases or spaces.
Phrases and Headings Capitalization
Capitalization of phrases and headings finds inconsistencies in words where some are capitalized and others written in lowercase; it also checks if the title case in headings is consistent.
Spelling consistency looks for similar words, user-specified words, spelling variations, consistency in accents, common typos, numbers in sentences, contractions, and phrases to avoid.
Abbreviation Forms And Definition
The abbreviation feature looks for inconsistencies in the way the abbreviation appears in the document. It also checks if the abbreviation is defined before use, defined more than once, and is inconsistent in abbreviation usage.
The formating tool focuses on formatting in work commonly used in technical and academic writing.
- Italics inconsistency
- Oxford commas style preference
- Quotes and brackets left open.
- Superscript and subscript usage in chemical elements and SI units
- Style points choices preferred in the style sheet
Lists And Bullets
The lists and bullets feature checks for consistent punctuation and capitalization usage in bullets and lists. It checks if the bullet or list item starts consistently in lower or upper cases and ends in semi-colons, full stops, or no punctuation.
Tables, Boxes, And Figures Tool
The tables, boxes, and figures feature checks for consistency in all tables, boxes, and figures used throughout your work. It looks for inconsistency in titles, headings, capitalization punctuation, and sequential numbering.
Finalization Tasks And Reports Tool
The finalization of tasks and reports does a variety of checks you would run before submitting your work. These included automatically generating a table of abbreviations, removing extra spaces, and creating a list of all the errors fixed using PerfectIt.
Repeat, Undo And Go Back Buttons
The undo and back buttons saved a lot of time and frustration when you intended to reject the suggestion, but you accidentally clicked on fixing it. PerfectIt 4’s the “fix” button changes to “undo” so you can immediately reverse the action.
It also has a back button that takes you to the previous error in a specific type check; for example, it cannot go back to abbreviations in capitalization. It moves back in that group of capitalization checks so you can compare previous capitalization mistakes.
PerfectIt also lets you jump to the next error check without forcing you to accept or reject the current correction suggestion. You can always go back within the group type to the unchecked error.
The repeat checks option in the menu allows you to repeat the current check.
How Accurate Is PerfectIt?
PerfectIt is an excellent software tool as a consistency checker. As mentioned earlier in the review, it is not a grammar and spell checker. PerfectIt shouldn’t be compared to Grammarly or ProWritingAid’s grammar checker abilities. Therefore, we didn’t test PerfectIt’s accuracy to detect grammar mistakes.
How I Use PerfectIt For Daily Writing
PerfectIt is the proofreader program I use after Grammarly has corrected my spelling, grammar, and punctuation mistakes. When I’ve made the significant editing changes, and the document is no longer a first draft, I like to run PerfectIt to find those inconsistencies in words, phrases, lists, and tables I missed.
What I Love About PerfectIt
I’m not a Mac user, so the PerfectIt review is based on using the PerfectIt 4 free trial in Microsoft Word.
- PerfectIt saves me time by detecting hard-to-find errors; fixings these errors can change the content from good to excellence.
- I can download and install the free trial version without giving my credit card details. Sometimes I want to try out a software program before deciding if I want to buy it; I don’t like sharing my details unnecessarily. PerfectIt allows you to test the product with no strings attached.
- Most of the time, I like PerfectIt to run all the consistency checks, but sometimes I only want it to check dashes, a preferred spelling, or inconsistencies in a table. The flexibility of selecting certain checks has saved me lots of time and effort.
- I use contractions in specific blog posts or articles. I can uncheck the contractions-checking option, saving me time because I don’t have to select “ignore the suggestions” every time I use a contraction.
- Checking for abbreviations is one of the best features. Love it! It’s so frustrating to read an article and come across an undefined abbreviation. PerfectIt helps writers avoid using abbreviations before the definition.
- The final cleanup of your work includes tasks like removing extra spaces. PerfectIt does it for you, once again saving you time and effort.
- The list generation of changes made using PerfectIt benefits the writer and the editor. It helps the editor create a report for the writer; the writer learns from their common typos and inconsistent mistakes.
- Undo an error is another feature I appreciate. Sometimes I change my mind and don’t want to fix the error, but I’ve already accepted the correction suggestion. With the undo button and go back button, I can cancel the fix or check the previous changes.
- Jumping to the next check is very convenient. When I can’t decide what to do with a correction suggestion, I can continue editing by going to the following error. Within the same group type, I can later go back to that error that I skipped.
What I’d Change
I would add a web browser extension for popular browsers like Chrome, Safari, Firefox, and Edge. I would also consider an app for Android and iPhone users.
If PerfectIt adds grammar and spelling tools like Grammarly, it can offer professionals and editors even more.
How Can You Test It Out?
PerfectIt has a 14-day free trial for writers to test the software program. The free trial has all the features the paid version offers.
How Much Does PerfectIt Cost?
The premium version costs $70 per year per user up to 39 users. For enterprises with 40 plus users, the bulk discounts work out to $25 per user per year.
The PerfectIt Premium version’s pricing competes well with PerfectIt alternatives.
What Software Do Professional Proofreaders Use?
Professional proofreaders and professional writers use proofreading software like PerfectIt that accommodates technical terms and company style sheets when editing documents. Professionals and companies use style sheets unique to their profession or brand; they want to use proofreading software that edits using these style sheets.
Who Owns PerfectIt?
Intelligent Editing is a staff-owned company with headquarters based in London. The team works in the United States and the United Kingdom. CEO, Daniel Heuman who originally developed PerfectIt, is based in New York.
What Is The Best Proofreading Software?
The best proofreading software is the software that suits the writer’s needs and writing style. Each software program has its unique features. Grammarly is an excellent grammar and spell checker. PerfectIt is a consistency checker for professionals; ProWritingAid integrates with Scrivener; Hemingway Editor offers distraction-free writing and editing; the Ginger Software focuses on rephrasing sentences.
What is your favorite PerfectIt feature? Which PerfectIt product do you use? If you haven’t used PercectIt before, are you going to give it a try?