Traditional “all-in-one” contract management software solutions can be astonishingly expensive, cumbersome, and don’t always work well in legal departments. User experience can be sub-par, and such a system is hard to change when it needs to support a new business initiative. Contract management should be visible to many areas of an organization, and that data should be both easy to find and logically stored. Legal needs to be able to work together with procurement, sales and others to function at full capacity. Additionally, the contract review process needs structure to avoid miscommunication and missed opportunities. Is your organization lacking in one of these areas?
What is needed are contract management solutions that are logically focused on particular aspects of contract management, such as contract lifecycle management, contract administration, or contract review and approval. In other words, you need a solution that is focused on yourparticular contract management needs. The best in breed of these solutions also allow you to expand the system as needed.
So what are six premium features that you should look for in a state-of-the-art, focused contract management solution? We’ve put together a quick-start list to help you move forward:
1. Quick Development Time
The best solutions are built to fill specific needs with great efficiency. It is easy to create, modify and deploy focused solutions with robust workflow, transaction management and reporting capabilities. These tools can be developed in as little as 30 minutes. They can be built as a business needs them, preventing costly delays. By building a new solution only when there is a need for it, the company saves money that would otherwise be wasted on solutions that just don’t work.
2. Rapid Deployment
While traditional contract management software has a lengthy deployment process that may take many months to complete, look for solutions that can be built and deployed in a few short weeks. The time to value provided by these solutions is unmatched, allowing greater agility by providing more immediate feedback.
3. Central repository
The ability to establish a searchable repository of all contracts, clauses and associated business information is critical. A single source for all sales collateral and other customer-facing content will make it easier for team members to find documents.
A simple, lightweight tool that only gives you the information you need and requires almost no training. It is intuitive and easy for anybody to use. Everyone will know exactly where contracts are in the process, who completed the last revision, what the next step is, etc. An iterative review process lets team members collaborate in a shared workspace.
Notices can be easily configured to ensure compliance with notice provisions. The tool alerts the right people when required notices (e.g. price changes, renewal, or termination notices) are due, and ensures the highest level of visibility so you can manage to the most favorable terms.
Modifications to the system can be made quickly without assistance from IT. By assessing the problem and building outward, organizations will not have to compromise existing initiatives to find value-building opportunities.
No matter the nature of your contract management problem, now is the time to be innovative. By assessing the problem and building outward, you won’t have to compromise existing initiatives to rescue your bottom line. If you already have a traditional contract management system in place, you can deploy focused solutions to fill the process and collaboration gaps. By implementing such cutting-edge solutions, an organization will free procurement, legal and sales to focus on adding value to the organization, as opposed to administrative tasks.