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4 Ways Contract Automation Can Save You Time In The Contract Lifecycle

The saying, “Time is money,” frankly doesn’t do time justice. Money can be spent and earned back. Time, once wasted, is gone forever. Feeling pressed for time is one of the most common, and most stressful, problems contract managers deal with in the workplace. Employing a smart contract management system can help make precious time count.

Templates Reduce Search Time

Categorizing contracts effectively at the beginning of the contract lifecycle sets managers up for success. When managers or legal counsel can quickly identify which contracts are affected by a specific condition or parameter, they can streamline reviews and catch issues early.

A tag template allows employees to flag critical information without the need to assign tags from memory every time. Tag templates fit a variety of types of contract since they serve more like an auto-checklist than a strict language boilerplate. Admins can also mark tags in the template as required fields to ensure each new contract is searchable according to necessary parameters. Overall, this tool saves time at the beginning by removing employee burden to research or remember all necessary tags and continues to save time on searches throughout the term of the contract.

Cloud-Based Storage Streamlines Communication

Maintaining up-to-date records is an essential part of contract management. In less-than-optimal systems, that may result in managers dealing with an endless series of emails sharing drafts with new updates, collating changes into a new “master” contract, and chasing down team members who are too slow to respond.

Storing important documents in a secure, cloud-based system can have a dramatic impact on time saved. Users access one universal copy of the contract instead of copying, downloading, and emailing an assortment of local files. Communication is simpler, and there’s much less risk of time wasted handling an obsolete portion of a contract.

Automatic Record-Keeping

One benefit of contract management software is that admins can review an audit log that shows who has accessed or altered the document and when. Various milestones in the contract lifecycle may require approval or action from multiple people. Managers following through on certain contract features or preparing for the renewal process can review the log to get a sense of what’s happened to the contract so far. This can save time spent tracking down multiple employees to collect individual reports.

Effective Auto-Reminders and Alerts

Sometimes it seems like every employee has their own system for setting reminders about important deadlines. Whether it’s color-coded sticky notes cluttering a desk, circled dates on a calendar, or email pings, the problem is that the system only works for one person in the team. And all too often, it doesn’t. Something falls through the cracks, and the manager ends up racing to handle a problem that seemed to come out of nowhere.

Auto-reminders within the contract management software can alert multiple people of the same upcoming deadline. This eliminates messy, paper reminder systems that may literally end up in the garbage. Setting up alerts within the same system also reduces the chance of an employee misremembering a deadline and marking it too late on their calendar. Managers may even wish to include themselves on auto-reminders for particular dates so they can supervise a more complex process in the contract lifecycle. The other benefit of setting reminders and alerts within a shared contract management system is reducing a manager’s stress, and that “Did I forget something?” feeling. Once an effective review, reminder, and alert system are in place, managers may feel able to let go of the urge to do yet another “just in case” review and concentrate more fully on another important project.

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