A Guide to Legal Contract Management

Topics: Contract Management Software, Legal

Written by Lindsey Paulk

A well-ordered legal contract management system can help legal departments, paralegals, and general counsel successfully manage contract-related demands. Without a software solution, they might not be able to face many challenges regarding increased contract complexity and volume. Legal contract management software can help by increasing the effectiveness of your contract management system and by minimizing the length of legal contract lifecycles.

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A Platform That Simplifies Contract Requests and Approvals

A dedicated legal contract management software solution provides users with several tools to effectively create legal requests and send them off for approval. The software makes collecting request data incredibly easy and fast, reducing delays and communication issues overall. With customizable contract request intake forms, users can productively move through this step of contract lifecycle management with a software solution that collects, stores, reviews, approves, edits, and oversees automated contract requests.

Legal workflow templates with automated approval routing help keep legal departments on the same page with every contract. Software users can also add multiple files and turn contract requests into contract data records simply, thanks to data auto population. In addition, legal contract management software has everything your company needs to stay accountable – task assignment features, comprehensive document tracking, and numerous notifications, reminders, and alerts.

Systematize and centralize your legal contract management processes with a software solution that empowers you to productively collaborate with counterparties, clients, vendors, and employees.

Efficient Contract Generation Capabilities

Building and customizing contracts with user-friendly contract assembly functions makes for a smooth contract generation process. With preapproved clauses and a library of contract templates, your team can create accurate, compliant contracts exceptionally fast. Advanced contract automation allows your team to assimilate metadata and clauses from your library into contract templates seamlessly.

In this manner, your legal department can oversee several document draft versions and contract templates so you can author contracts rapidly. Furthermore, saving and exporting these drafts into a standardized format is painless with a software platform. Contract templates are available for use, editing, and upgrading at any time within the software interface.

Streamlined Contract Negotiation Process

A streamlined contract negotiation process makes it easy for paralegals, general counsel, legal departments, and other pertinent contract stakeholders to make decisions on contract terms. The most optimal legal contract management software solutions provide legal departments with version control tools and contract collaboration features that simplify the entire negotiation process. With comprehensive logging, contract monitoring, and numerical version tracking, every single document version is effectively saved and filed.

Parties working with specific contracts can have control (based on specified permissions) over various versions of contract. They can redline and track document versions, upgrading them easily and efficiently. In traditional, manual contract management systems, legal stakeholders relied on back-and-forth negotiation systems that often resulted in disjointed and unorganized communication.

Contributors to contract drafts can utilize clause assignment tools to effectively collaborate on the same documents. When a contributor tries to edit or omit a clause, the owner of the clause is then subjected to the approval stage. In this manner, only the pertinent parties that are contributing to a selected contract are included in the contract negotiation process according to clause ownership.

With the help of a preconfigured legal contract workflow and a rules-based negotiation stage, every contract negotiation between employees, and internal or external parties, is made extremely productive and efficient. Considering a preconfigured legal contract workflow, this workflow provides relevant stakeholders with the option to receive automated notifications and gain access to a user-friendly, digital contract collaboration platform. Within the platform, they can access and review select contract drafts.

The contract negotiation process, when conducted over a legal contract software solution, is simple. This is because employees and external parties without internal access to the contract management software are able to edit, access, and review documents that they have been given permission to access. Within the software, permissions-based access allows certain individuals to view documents as opposed to others. The software securely stores and isolates select data and contracts so that only specified contract stakeholders can open and edit documents within the platform. Furthermore, contract stakeholders will use the platform to oversee the approval stage and collaborate in a single location, allowing them to receive notifications regarding the status of a contract's approval.

All of these factors combined increase productivity and results by reducing delays and miscommunications. It is evident that a comprehensive and intelligent contract negotiation platform within your software solution can provide any business with an empowering and simplified legal contract management process.

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Improved Obligations Workflow

For the best possible legal contract lifecycle management process, it’s necessary to have standards in place that allow for a comprehensive overview of critical contract obligations that require fulfillment. Automated contract workflows can create efficient, intelligent pathways that employ automated reminders and alerts, task management, and modernized approval routing to make your company exceed legal contract management expectations. In this way, your company can allocate important manual resources and time to other outlets, and work towards creating strategic efforts that will help increase results and organizational effectiveness. For example, by automating several tasks, your contract managers have more time on hand to focus their efforts on analyzing data and working towards capitalizing on current vendor or client relationships by going the extra mile.

By using an obligations workflow, you can enable your software system to trigger certain actions during specific stages of the contract’s lifecycle. Overseeing obligations in a proactive way only makes the contract management process that much more timely and productive.

Enhanced By Auditing and Compliance Reports

With effective auditing features and detailed compliance reports, your company’s legal department can maintain visibility and gain valuable insights on contract relationships that span across your organization. Various metrics, deadlines, and renewal or expiry dates allow for legal terms and compliance policies to be very easy to follow.

A dedicated and proven legal contract management software system might offer compliance functions that confirm and compare vendor or company data to the Office of Foreign Assets Control’s sanctions lists to ensure optimal levels of risk management and analysis in a detailed format.

Reporting Functions of Legal Contract Management

Implementing an ad hoc contract reporting function is key to gaining insights on items such as financial information, approaching tasks, and status reports, among other pieces of pertinent information. With these detailed reports, you can send them off via email or spreadsheet on a consistently scheduled basis. Online reporting features give legal stakeholders a way to efficiently use contract management software to create flexible reporting pathways that present accurate contract data instantly.

In these reporting features, you can export files through Microsoft Word, PDF, spreadsheet, rich text, and more. Additionally, with a user-friendly and comprehensive dashboard with visually presented data, you can oversee a broad picture of all deadlines, tasks, activities, contract statuses, and the overall performance of your contract management system.

Make the Transition to an Upgraded Legal Contract Management System

With your new knowledge of the cutting-edge tools and functions available to you within a legal contract management software solution, you can help your contract management team, legal department, and other legal stakeholders boost efficiency in contract management. By employing an automated contract lifecycle workflow mechanism that can save time, manage risk, and develop efficient pathways, managing an increased demand of complex contracts becomes far more productive within your company’s legal operations. In this way, its plain to see that selecting a legal contract management software solution is the way to go so you can scale and boost performance. Here at Dock 365, we have just what you need.

Dock provides you with the best contract management software features that can help your company manage the entirety of contract lifecycles. As a Microsoft partner, we are experts in employing Office 365 and SharePoint to streamline contract management.

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Conclusion

Today, you can give your business the best tools possible by implementing a dedicated contract management system. Here at Dock, we are experts in SharePoint and Office 365 and want to help business utilize their features to revolutionize and streamline contract management. Our Contract Management System is equipped with several amazing features that will help improve the quality of your contract management processes with the help of a SharePoint and Office 365-based collaborative software interface. Improve business dealings, increase contract compliance, reduce bottlenecks and turnaround times, enhance risk mitigation efforts, and completely overhaul contract management team productivity for the better with our contract management software.

Ready to get started today? Reach out to us to learn more about our  Dock 365 Contract Management System.

If you would like more information, we welcome you to schedule a free demo with us today.

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