This blog post was updated on April 1st, 2021
In our previous Contract Insights blog, “Contract Lifecycle Management Part 1: Mastering Contract Management Blog Series,” we discussed common contract lifecycle management tasks and processes that challenge organizations - and how these challenges can negatively impact contract lifecycles. In this conclusion to that blog, we detail the reasons organizations should implement contract lifecycle management - as well as the core functionality that should be leveraged for the most powerful contract management software experience.
Why Should Organizations Implement Contract Lifecycle Management?
Studies have shown that contract management expenses can be reduced by up to 50% when organizations manage the entire contract lifecycle from contract requests to contract renewals with a formal tools and structured processes. The benefits of contract lifecycle management include a streamlined contract management process that can measure contract management performance metrics and KPIs.
Organizations as a whole can realize the positive impact because contract lifecycle management tools provide immediate ROI by making the job of contract managers easier. This way they can focus on contract administration best practices - adding more value with their roles. Executives can have the visibility they need to forecast how contracts influence business objectives, revenue, and productivity. Sales managers can maximize insights into contract process timelines, pipelines, and the most successful deals. Legal teams can spend less time reviewing documents and more time focusing on risk mitigation, proactive opportunity realization, and organizational interest alignment. IT leaders can connect departments with integrated technology that automates contract processes, protects sensitive information, and makes employees more efficient in their work.
The high-level benefits of a CLM solution can help automate contract management while teams securely store contracts and related documents, track changes and status, manage permissions, provide transparency, and integrate contract management artificial intelligence for contract performance improvement with faster contract authoring, contract analytics, and contract optimization.
Choosing Contract Lifecycle Management Software
Advanced CLM software helps organizations manage complex or high volumes of contracts with enterprise contract lifecycle management. The best contract management software can immediately provide the features your organization requires while offering a user-friendly platform that is flexible and configurable to meet your organization’s evolving needs. Contracts aren’t static, so your contract management software must be able to evolve with you.
CobbleStone Software’s web-enabled, highly robust, low-friction, and user-friend contract management software suite - Contract Insight® - supports the eight stages of the contract lifecycle with tools that can be used across the entire organization and multiple departments. Contract Insight is an acclaimed solution that can easily and quickly be configured to capture, analyze, manage, and monitor contracts, agreements, committals, obligations, and more. Powerful modeling technology allows organizations to capture contract types' unique structures, data requirements, and workflow processes while optimizing your contract lifecycle workflow.
Contract Insight Enterprise is intelligent contract software that provides robust capabilities and functionality to help with every stage of your contract process:
Stage 1: Contract Requests: Configure permissions or a rules-based process to allow requests from vendors, suppliers, customers, employees, and more. Contract Insight can enable organizations to capture the unique structure, data requirements, and workflow processes for each type of contract while centralizing and streamlining contract lifecycle workflow.
Stage 2: Contract Authoring & Document Assembly: Utilize Contract Insight to create, author, and draft contracts in MS Word or online document authoring tools and store a full library of dynamic document templates from a pre-approved library. CobbleStone’s MS Word integration allows legal teams to continue to use MS Word to draft and edit contracts after creation. An unlimited library of rules-based templates with mergeable fields helps users choose the correct template, and access to other templates is locked down.
Stage 3: Contract Negotiations: Create drafts and versions of contracts for review by employees, vendors, customers, clients, and more in Contract Insight. Easily export versions and drafts to PDF or MS Word. Contract viewing is easy with real-time access to critical contract data by key stakeholders. On-demand version comparisons of different drafts or versions provide a quick and easy way to review changes and determine what the next steps are. CobbleStone's PC Helper Applications for MS Word and MS Outlook further optimize contract collaboration and contract oversight - as do CobbleStone's seamless integrations with Google Drive and MS OneDrive.
Stage 4: Contract Approvals: Leverage your organization’s existing contract management workflows with fully configurable approval workflow processes that can be initiated from any stage in the contract lifecycle. Establish workflow process rules to ensure timely reviews, task completion, notifications, and contract approvals. Contract Insight’s automated calendar and emailed task alerts and task escalation help organizations stay on top of contract assignments, information, requirements, and key dates.
Stage 5: Contract Execution: Control, optimize, and shorten the processing time needed for the drafting, review, approval, and execution of a contract. CobbleStone’s electronic signature software makes it easy to send and sign contracts in record time. Online e-signatures and bulk e-signatures provide convenience, saved time, and optimal security. Once contracts are executed, Contract Insight’s secure and centralized contract repository makes it easy to navigate and find the location for all final and signed files.
Stage 6: Obligations & Task Management: After a contract is executed, its life and relationships will continue with highly configurable automated alerts, intelligent workflow processes, risk assessments, advanced reporting, spend management, and compliance monitoring. Spend management is simplified with Contract Insight. Streamline contract pricing and budget tracking, track and monitor vendor-related costs, and receive advanced budget alerts using vendor/client management. Manage obligations, deadlines, and task events with flexible workflow configurations with automated notifications and alerts for key business users and stakeholders.
Stage 7: Compliance Auditing & Reporting: Gain visibility into all your contracts with Contract Insight’s advanced reporting. Maintain regulatory, legal, and compliance standards with full audit trails, advanced contract metrics, and automated key date and renewal notifications.
Stage 8: Contract Renewals & Amendments: Contract Insight’s automated alerts help organizations proactively identify renewal requirements, so business users and stakeholders have adequate time to review contracts and make informed business decisions. You can quickly draft new contracts based on existing contracts to not miss incredible opportunities for organization-wide growth.
Reap the Benefits of Contract Management Mastery With Contract Insight
Master contract lifecycle management with automated contract creation, real-time visibility, comprehensive audit trail functionality, seamless contract collaboration, a secure and accessible contract repository, process transparency, insights from contract metrics, and more with CobbleStone Software's widely-implemented and acclaimed CLM software suite - Contract Insight.
CobbleStone Software has been recognized by Forrester as a Leader in their report (which you can access for free): The Forrester Wave™: Contract Lifecycle Management For All Contracts, Q1 2021. Your commitment to improving how you manage contracts supported by fully integrated contract lifecycle management software will not only make contract management easier, but it will also help your organization get the most out of contracts and use them as the core driver of success that they can be.
Now, it's time to get started with mastering contract management. Get started with the free, easy-to-read whitepaper below!
To see CobbleStone Software in action, request a free demo.