Add-on Review: Consistency Checker

Consistency checker is an interesting little add-on for Docs that will help you to stay consistent in writing style throughout your document, for instance by reporting any instances where you’ve hyphenated or spelled words in different ways, used different forms for abbreviations (e.g. with or without periods in acronyms, or “email” versus “e-mail”), or where you’ve made common linguistic errors (e.g. should of in place of should have). It’s not meant to replace professional editing or spelling/grammar checks, but to work alongside them to improve your document’s quality.

I find it this sort of tool handy, since I’m a UK national but often write for publications that use American English, so my spelling often inadvertently uses bits of both! Consistency Checker helps me to only use one or the other.

The add-on is called in the normal way, from the Add-ons menu:

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When the sidebar has loaded, you’re presented with some information about the package, and a blue Scan button to commence scanning the document:

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(Notably, the add-on makes clear that it’s free during its Beta release, so be aware that there may one day be a charge).

Clicking on Scan reads your document and reports any issues it finds with the document’s style:

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Unfortunately, it doesn’t appear to highlight these in the text, which would have been a useful touch. Instead, you have to dig out the instances yourself, and make your corrections.

If you write a lot of formal documents (especially if they’re long) such as bids, proposals, articles or contracts, and want to make the best impression, you might like to give Consistency Checker a try, especially when you have various writers and collaborators contributing copy.

[Be aware that Consistency Checker appears to be a ‘lite’ version of PerfectIt, a proofreading package, and you’re presented with links to a free trial of PerfectIt when you open the add-on.]

This is an independent review based on personal opinion. I have no commercial or personal connection with the authors of the product reviewed.