Back to School: How to “Ace” Education Contract Management

01/21/20

Ace education contract management with CobbleStone

Manual drafting processes, unsystematic document and contract storage, and workflows involving emails and phones lead to contract lifecycle bottlenecks, wasted time, and squandered opportunities.  Contract management software can help alleviate these issues so that education professionals can take control of their contracts and “ace” contract management best practices.

You are a university student.  It’s time to go back to school.  You have a plan for the semester.  It’s going to be better than the last one. You are going to participate in class.  You are going to work hard.  You are going to study hard.  You are going to imbibe every morsel of higher education that your brain can absorb.  You have the motivation…

However, due to a disorganized set of binders, an inefficient note-taking process, and a shoddy system for remembering due dates, you find yourself slipping into bad habits that are not geared toward academic excellence.

This same scenario applies to universities, colleges, and other institutions of higher education in their handling of contract management.  Procurement specialists, legal counsel, paralegals, executive assistants, and other higher education professionals struggle to manage contracts effectively due to outdated contract management procedures. 

The Problem with Manual Contract Drafting

It’s your first day back in class.  During a lecture, you listen attentively and write down everything your professor is saying, but you cannot keep up.  You spend too much time formatting your notes as you go, causing you to fall behind and miss details.  The notes end up being a scribbled, disorganized mess.  You repeat this process every time with the same results.  Your studies suffer.

Similarly, manually drafting contract documents every time a contract is being prepared involves searching and pulling essential parts out of a cluster of documents and manually drafting the rest, often resulting in the accidental exclusion of necessary terms and, consequently, a contract that is held up in review.

The Solution is Contract Templates and Clauses

Contract templates provided by leading contract management software make contract authoring easy, replacing the manual drafting process for streamlined contract creation and approval.  With a system that creates your organization’s contract from a template, your team has a clear starting point for the drafting of a new contract. 

System users can configure their system to pull desired terms and clauses based on the type of contract they wish to create, ensuring that all necessary terms are incorporated.  Thus, contract bottlenecks are reduced, and deals close faster. A+!

The Problem with the Manual Storage of Contracts

You’ve completed page upon page of homework due for your lecture today.  It took you hours, but the payoff awaits in the form of a boosted participation grade.  You reach into your homework folder to fish through a mountain of different worksheets from different classes, but you CANNOT seem to find what you need.  You receive a participation grade of “0” for the day.  Your grade drops accordingly.

Education contract management professionals struggle to keep organized as well and, when dealing with vitally important contracts, this can lead to harmful consequences.  Too many organizations continue to rely on ineffective manual approaches to contract storage, such as those involving emails, paper documentation, and disorganized digital storage.  Such methods make it all but impossible to maintain contract security, version control, adherence to key dates, awareness of milestones, and the ability to improve contract performance.

Storing contracts may seem easy enough.  However, in the absence of a centralized contract repository, higher-ed contract managers are missing an opportunity to reduce risk, to maintain control of their contracts, and to enhance contract performance.

The Solution is a Secure Contract Repository System

Organizations need a central contract repository to store contracts and obtain the most from them.  A cloud-based repository allows contracts to be securely stored, allowing contract management professionals to organize their contracts, exercise document version control, search for legacy contracts, track approval statuses, collaborate, and more.

Contract storage isn’t merely a matter of where an organization safeguards its documents.  Rather, it’s an opportunity for organizations to make contracts work for them.  When education contract management teams leverage a secure contract repository to centralize document control, improve accountability, and increase productivity, they become well-ordered contract security dean’s list students.

The Problem with Manual Contract Workflow

You enter your nighttime lecture.  All your classmates are nervously talking amongst themselves.  You find this puzzling, but you shrug it off and prepare for a productive discussion with your groupmates about your upcoming slideshow presentation.  To your dismay, however, your professor walks in and calls on your group to present.  The professor reschedules your group’s presentation, causing you all to lose points.  Your mistake delayed and caused the group to be penalized.

Much like your presentation group, education contract management teams employing manual workflow procedures suffer if one person misses reminders, renewal dates, payments, or other important workflow tasks.  Far too many schools and higher education institutions have no workflow process at all.  Communication that pertains to contracts and negotiations that occurs using emails and phones can result in contract lifecycle bottlenecks, missed steps and key dates, wasted time, and financial losses.  Education contract management teams must leave this outdated practice behind and adopt a more efficient one.

The Solution is Automated Contract Workflows

Organizations that leverage trusted contract management software for workflow automation can reduce contract lifecycle delays by appointing the right people with unlimited contract notifications, task reminders, and automated alerts.  Intelligent workflow automation helps contract management teams to leverage contract process management, user-defined fields, audit trails, reporting and analytics, and more.

Contract negotiation and approvals can be overseen with workflows that track all stages of the contract lifecycle.  Contract management personnel can meet key dates and milestones, including contract renewals, with automatic alerts.  Furthermore, audit trail history logged by reputable contract management software provides teams with an up-to-date record of changes made to a contract.

Be a punctual student of contract workflows by overcoming bottlenecks and assuring accountability with intelligent, automated workflow.

Education Contract Management Software

It is time for contract management professionals in school systems, universities, and colleges to ace AP Education Contract Management with the help of CobbleStone Software.

CobbleStone Software provides award-winning education contract management software for contract request tracking, reporting and analytics, FOIA request portal, eSignatures, and much more.  CobbleStone’s Contract Insight® is a web-based, flexible solution that benefits thousands of users in both large and small educational institutions throughout both the public and private sectors.

Contact us for a free demo of our software to see CobbleStone in action!

Make your case for contract management software. Download your guide now.

Sean Heck

Written by Sean Heck

Sean Heck is a Content Marketing Specialist at CobbleStone Software

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