People, particularly accountants (like me and probably you), who work with a lot of documents on a daily basis need to file them away for later use or reference. When doing so, there’s a good chance that the files will be converted into PDFs (portable document format) as files in that format are usually much smaller than space-hungry Microsoft Word or Excel files.

But there are some issues with this.

On the plus side:

  • PDF files are very compact, which makes them ideal for storage or distribution.
  • The format is universal and can be read on all platforms, without the person viewing the file needing the program that created the original file in the first place.

On the negative side: PDF files cannot usually be edited once they are created. So if you want to edit any of these documents that you have stored as PDFs, you are going to have to return them into their original file formats or work on the original file.

A great software solution to overcome the above problem is the Able2Extract program from This powerful PDF conversion software makes light work of extracting information from a PDF and turning it back into a more editable file format. It claims to be the first PDF converter on the market compatible on the Windows, Mac and Linux platforms.

How it works

Let’s say you want to convert a PDF spreadsheet back into an Excel file so that you can manipulate the information once again. Once you have launched Able2Extract, click on the “Open” button in the main toolbar and select the PDF you want to convert.Able2Extract 1

Now you have a choice of either converting the entire file into an Excel spreadsheet or just portions that you need. To convert the entire file, click on “All” in the Select menu. If you want to convert only part of the file, click on “Area” and then select the data you want to convert using your mouse.Able2Extract 2

Now click on “Excel” in the Convert to File Type menu.able2extract 3

Of course, Excel conversions need to be very accurate in order for the process to be as convenient as possible. Converting an Excel file and then having to further edit the output file defeats the purpose of conversion via software. That’s why there’s a special “Custom” option for Excel conversions so that you can clearly define what your output file needs to look like before committing to the conversion.  Click “Define” on the Custom Excel conversion menu to do this.Able2Extract 4Now you will be able to make sure that the output file comes out just as you intended it to look. You can add, delete and replot tables, define column and row settings, and make a variety of other custom changes. Once you believe that you are satisfied, select the “Show Preview” box to see what your finished Excel file will look like. Able2extract 5

If you are satisfied, you can then click the green “Convert” button to complete the process and save the file to your computer.

Your output file will be incredibly accurate, which will allow you to start working on your newly created Excel file without having to make additional changes to the formatting of the spreadsheet.

Whilst Able2Extract is particularly useful for performing conversions to Excel, this only scratches the surface of the conversion options that are offered by the software. You can effortlessly and accurately convert PDFs into Word, PowerPoint, OpenOffice, AutoCAD file formats, HTML, image formats, and quite a lot more.

The latest version of the software (Able2Extract 8) boasts a new preview pane. It provides users with better navigational control over pages, bookmarks, and attachments. Navigating through lengthy PDF documents is now more convenient and done directly from within the viewing window itself.

Able2Extract’s algorithm allows users to convert PDF to MS Word forms which users can digitally fill in. Regardless of the textual format, the conversion output is precise. Layout, graphics, formatting, and text are faithfully preserved and kept intact.

Are there alternatives?

The answer is, of course, yes. But from what I’ve read about them, none are quite as efficient as Able2Extract. Try them for yourself to see if I’m right:

•  PDF Converter 8 from Nuance
  Adobe® Acrobat® XI
•  PDFLite from
•  Foxit PhantomPDF™ Standard 6.1
•  Oracle PDF Import Extension

No Risk Trial with Able2Extract

Able2Extract 8 is sleek and powerful and is compatible with Windows 8, 7, Vista, XP, as well as being backwards compatible with other Windows platforms going back to, and including, Windows 98. Mac aficionados can get Able2Extract 8 for the latest OS X Mountain Lion (it probably also works on OSX Mavericks). For Linux, users can download Able2Extract 8 on the popular Ubuntu and Redhat distributions.

If this sounds like a tool that you can’t live without for another day, visit the website to try out Able2Extract for a free trial version of seven days in order to experience the software’s benefits first hand. Let me know if you are as impressed with it as I am.

Martin Pollins

Martin Pollins

Managing Director at Bizezia
Martin Pollins is a Chartered Accountant with wide experience in corporate finance and business management. He holds a number of directorships and has served on the boards of several companies, including those listed on the London Stock Exchange, AIM and OFEX.

He was a Council member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales from 1988 to 1996.

Martin Pollins ran his own firm based in Sussex and was the first Accountancy firm in the UK to advertise on television and Martin went on to create and launch the CharterGroup Partnership (the UK's first Accountancy network) and then LawGroup UK (one of the largest networks of lawyers in the country).

Martin started work on the Bizezia concept in 1996, developing the broad range of information resources and products over the past 18 years.
Martin Pollins

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