Steep learning curve & dire interface but better fundamental functionality than others
March 27, 2018

Steep learning curve & dire interface but better fundamental functionality than others

Glen Mehn | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 8 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User

Overall Satisfaction with LibreOffice

It's a replacement for MS Office. It was used across the organisation, particularly for internal collaboration and documents in a mixed (Windows/Mac/Linux) environment. Once we got finance to start using it they actually preferred it to Excel (had some statistical features) though there was a learning curve. It's particularly handy because it's free and able to be downloaded and avoids the upgrade/version compatibility cycle that we have had with MSO.


  • Calc has better statistical tools built in
  • Ability to map macros (i.e. ctrl-K for inserting links) to whatever you want
  • Cross platform better than windows/mac
  • Works on Linux


  • Interface is actually dire - 20 years out of date. It's like Word 2000, or maybe 98.
  • The PowerPoint analogue leaves a LOT to be desired. You have to spend quite a lot of time making stuff up for it.
  • There's no real analogue to Project.
  • The Visio analogue is Draw, which is really not as easy to use.
  • Cheaper, straightforward licensing (it's free)
  • High initial learning curve
  • Resistance from some users (due to high learning curve)
  • Overall probably equal - less faffing with licenses, particularly for SMEs
The online docs - people often found [them] confusing and limited in what they do. LO was preferred to those though they lack the real-time collaboration features in the other documents.
Users preferred Office 2016 though support was going to go away for it so we investigated alternatives.
People liked having a local thing that worked for them rather than yet another thing in the browser.
If it works people like it. It's very well suited for fairly straightforward collaboration - if you need advanced features you'll need to either map macros or spend a lot of time hunting. In some cases it's handier than the MS version.

It's less well suited for going back and forth between MS and Office docs - particularly things like version control and it hasn't handled .docx/.xslx/.pptx files as well as the older alternatives (though that is getting better). Also doesn't handle SmartArt from Word.

It's *much* more stable particularly with BIG spreadsheets and documents (having known an author who lost ~120K words of a novel to Word and refuses to use it ever again)


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