How To Improve Contract Management in 3 Simple Steps

12/28/21

CobbleStone Software showcases how to improve contract management in three simple steps.As contract management continuously evolves amidst constant digital transformation, you can find various ways to improve your processes.  Rather than fall behind with manual contract management processes that require disparate tools - such as email, spreadsheets, wet signatures, and postal mail – read on to see how you can improve your contract management processes with future-minded contract management software.

How To Improve Contract Management

To improve contract management, you need to increase contract management security and reduce manual contract management processes wherever possible.  Three key contract management improvement steps include centralizing contract management in a secure contract repository, implementing contract management workflow automation, and leveraging contract intelligence.  You should leverage a future-minded contract lifecycle management software platform to improve contract management.

#1 - Centralize Contract Management in a Secure Contract Repository

To centralize contract management in a secure contract repository, you should leverage a leading CLM software platform that can empower you to protect sensitive contract data within a highly secure, web-enabled location.  Conversely, managing confidential and sensitive data within disparate systems - such as email and spreadsheets - can leave confidential and sensitive data vulnerable to data breaches.

Protect Sensitive & Confidential Contract Data

You can quickly identify crucial data – such as financial information, phone numbers, emails, locations, counterparty information, clauses, milestones, and key dates – with the help of robust CLM software search features.  By leveraging a contract repository offered by a leading contract lifecycle management software provider that is SOC 1SOC 2, Privacy Shield, and HITRUST compliant, you can confidently know that your contract data resides in a secure location.

Maximize Contract Data Protection With Configurable User Permissions

Without stringent contract data permissions that allow contract management stakeholders to view only the necessary information that aligns with their responsibilities, you can run the risk of contract data falling into the wrong hands.  Fortunately, a centralized and secure contract repository within a leading CLM software platform can enable you to configure user permissions to allow stakeholders the proper access to specific contract data – providing added security for sensitive and confidential contract information.  You can retain optimized oversight over contract organization, permissions, version control, status tracking, and collaboration within a centralized CLM software platform.

 

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#2 - Implement Contract Management Workflow Automation

Implement contract workflow automation that unifies people, processes, and technology to streamline the contract management process from requests through renewals.  Contract workflow automation tools can empower you to streamline the pre-award and post-award contract management processes with detailed oversight.  Contract workflow automation usually involves a leading CLM software that offers highly-configurable workflow features for robust contract management efficiency.

Integrate Contract Workflow Automation from Requests to Renewals

Overseeing each stage of the contract lifecycle process can consume your time and energy while running the risk of human error in manually managing multiple documents.  You can find yourself struggling to maximize contract performance throughout the entirety of the contract lifecycle.  Fortunately, intelligent contract workflow automation reduces bottlenecks by connecting the right people at the right time with virtually unlimited task reminders and contract notifications. 

You can leverage advanced reporting and analytics tools, contract process management, user-defined fields, audit trails, and more.  Contract lifecycle automation tools can track the stages of the contract management process - including contract collaboration, contract negotiations, and approvals.  CLM software allows you to anticipate milestones and key dates - including contract renewals - with integrated automated alerts.  Moreover, contract lifecycle management services support audit trail history that tracks up-to-date contract changes.  Automated CLM process flow can help you focus on contract performance management by allowing you to concentrate more on the content of contracts.

Automate Contract Signing With Secure E-Signatures

Gathering required signatures for a contract can prove difficult, especially when signees are in different locations.  This highly anticipated step that finalizes contracts and propels their execution can be delayed with manual wet signatures.  Fortunately, electronic signatures can make signing contracts a breeze with contract lifecycle management software that empowers signees to sign in the office or remotely – especially with the help of a CLM software mobile app.  Additionally, you can leverage the use of digital signatures that virtually ensure a signature's date of signing and that it was untampered with thereafter - reducing the need for a licensed notary.  

 

Make Your Case for Contract Lifecycle Management Software

 

#3 - Leverage Contract Intelligence for Robust CLM Success

To leverage contract intelligence for robust CLM success, maximize artificial intelligence with machine learning that can support automated contract assembly and revision.  Remaining current with the latest document language can prove challenging - especially as laws and regulations change.  Contract intelligence can be configured to recognize specific language, offer insightful language recommendations, and provide dynamic risk assessment mapping.

Artificial Intelligence With Machine Learning

Remaining current with the latest document language can prove challenging - especially as laws and regulations change.  You can encounter legal ops setbacks when manually sourcing the latest contract language, particularly in clauses.  Thankfully, robust contract intelligence can empower you by supporting automated contract assembly and revision. Integrated contract AI with machine learning can be configured to recognize specific language - including clauses and phrases - and offer insightful language recommendations.  Such recommendations arise from a configured language library. 

Download CobbleStone's AI-101 Whitepaper Now!

Moreover, contract artificial intelligence can help extract metadata that can be leveraged to support legal routing, contract abstraction, auto-amendment recommendations, approvals, and more.  Machine learning can feed CLM software the necessary data to evolve with changing environmental variables and algorithms.  While artificial intelligence does not replace the counsel of a licensed legal resource, AI can reduce some of the tedium and offer intelligent possibilities from which you can choose.  Rather than waste time unnecessarily, contract AI with machine learning can help streamline your legal operations with robust insight and unparalleled confidence.

Streamline Contract Data Extraction & Identification

A centralized contract repository backed by contract artificial intelligence can empower you to streamline and automate your contract management processes by transforming static documents into dynamic documents that can adapt to the stages of the contract lifecycle.  A centralized and secure contract repository can help you proactively identify opportunities, improve contract oversight, and manage risk with the help of robust artificial intelligence and machine learning.

With the ability to intelligently map imported contract data to user-defined fields, you can organize and easily search for necessary information as needed from a centralized and secure location.  Leading CLM software enables you to create virtually unlimited contract records with amendments and flow-down functionalities that support ancillary documentation attachments - including subcontracts - for maximized contract organization and streamlined reporting. 

Additionally, low-friction MS Outlook and MS Word integrations can help you maximize your contract management processes by streamlining contract collaboration and communications.  While contract management software can support contract data extraction, a leading contract management software provider can coordinate bulk contract data extraction services for robust CLM software implementation ROI.

Dynamic Contract Risk Assessment Mapping

Assessing contract management risk within a myriad of contracts can be challenging without visualization and prioritization.  Whether you are dealing with ten or ten million contracts, identifying and prioritizing risk factors can prove challenging when sifting through words and other data variables within pages of documents.  Identifying risk can prove arduous without a centralized and graphical opportunity assessment tool.

Luckily, robust CLM software offers risk assessment and OFAC search mapping tools to graphically visualize risk within your documents for robust risk contract management.  Rather than manually sifting through your contract records for risk variables, you can leverage a visualized graph that can plot contracts based on their identified risk score – yielding a visualized risk analysis of active contracts that can help you effectively prioritize contract risk factor decision-making.  You can also analyze how a contract would perform with hypothetical risk variables and exposure within a risk assessment matrix - further helping you and your internal stakeholders prepare for prospective happenings.

Cobblestone Software offers a risk assessment matrix for dynamic risk assessment mapping.

You can leverage this visual contract risk assessment matrix and statistical data analysis to identify negative, neutral, or positive facts about contracts within your CLM system to help improve your contract strategy.  You can also enable message alerts to notify you if a contract incurs a value of X% greater than the average contract within your CLM software database.

You can also leverage an OFAC search graphical risk tool to identify if your contracts, including involved vendors and employees, comply with the Office of Foreign Asset Control's national sanctions list.

CobbleStone Software offers an OFAC risk compliance matrix.

This graphical risk visualization allows you to identify a contract's OFAC compliance both in the pre-award and post-award stage – increasing risk mitigation.  You can preconfigure rules to notify you in real-time if a current contract meets or exceeds a specific OFAC Search percentage to allow for swift risk mitigation before it becomes untenable.

To further improve contract management, access your concise contract management best practice guide here.

Improve Contract Management with CobbleStone Contract Insight®

Don't waste any more time with contract management bottlenecks.  CobbleStone Contract Insight CLM software can make improving contract management as easy as 1,2,3! 

CobbleStone Vendor Management Software Demo

CobbleStone Contract Insight has remained a visionary leader in CLM software for over twenty years.  CobbleStone's award-winning and feature-rich contract management software streamlines the contract management process with optimal governance, reduced friction, and high flexibility from contract requests to renewals.  Thousands of contract managers trust CobbleStone Contract Insight as their go-to CLM software solution.  Moreover, CobbleStone Software - as a CLM software provider – is SOC 1, SOC 2, and HITRUST compliant.  CobbleStone's user-friendly, robust, and scalable solution seamlessly integrates with mission-critical applications, including MS Word and MS Outlook, for unified and seamless contract management.  It's no wonder why Forrester names CobbleStone a Leader in CLM software!

 

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Joshua Hansen

Written by Joshua Hansen

Joshua Hansen is the Content Marketing Strategist of CobbleStone Software.

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