A Guide to Contract Management Software Implementation
Most of the time, sticking with the status quo makes sense: familiar systems and protocols are time-tested and easy to follow. In fact, upending traditional workflows or introducing new tools can trigger fear and frustration, and sometimes a new option isn’t always the best fit.
Making the Switch to Contract Management Software
When it comes to contract management workflow, many legal departments still rely on an ad hoc set of solutions that combine filing cabinets, spreadsheets, emails, and a shared drive - and for a lot of teams, those solutions work just fine. But holding on to spreadsheets and other low-tech options for too long can be equally costly. Thankfully, making the switch to contract lifecycle management software no longer requires a leap of faith.
Choosing Your Option
There are plenty of solutions on the market, offering different features, from CLM software that is more of a simple contract repository to solutions with advanced AI capabilities. So how do you choose between hundreds of different options to find a solution that best fits your companies needs? First, it makes establish a baseline to help you understand the capabilities - and limitations - of contract management software as well as a simple set of guidelines to help you determine if you need a solution and, if so, which option makes the most sense.
The best framework for helping you understand the problem of contract management should include the following considerations:
Protecting Your Assets
As your business grows, so do the number of contracts that must be created, negotiated and managed. In fact, the average Fortune 2000 company may be a party to as many as 40,000 active contracts, each one with its own set of authorities, enforcement, and risks. Unfortunately, ineffective contract management of contracts can cost businesses billions per year in missed opportunities and risk.
The purpose of your contract risk assessment is to protect your assets and your organization. While disorganization, missed milestones, inadvertent violation of terms, breaches of contracts, and a host of other potential risks lurk within any unaccounted for or mismanaged contractual agreement, many protections also exist. Unfortunately, those protections are only effective if they are identified and invoked.
How to know when it's time to upgrade your contract management system
How to decipher which features you need
What to take into consideration before making a decision
How to select contract management software
How to identify the best solution for your company
Finding the Right Fit
It’s true that dedicated CLM software can help organizations better manage the entire contracting lifecycle. If you’re keen to improve your current contract management strategies, there’s bound to be a software solution to satisfy your requirements, from the initial drafting of a contract through signing, execution, and renegotiation.
Ultimately, the final decision to make the switch depends upon what your organization needs now, and how you envision future growth. Only you can know for sure how best to optimize your organization’s contract management system, but if you begin by assessing your needs and goals, you’ll be in the best position to make the right choice.
Ready to learn more about whether contract management software is the right tool for you and your team? Download The Contract Management Software Selection Guide, and gain access to valuable insight into the options available and learn how to vet those options to make the right choice.