Contract management is a critical piece to any organization that requires dedicated time, resources, and an eye for the fine details. With a modernized approach to contract management that leverages the new tools offered by technology, you can make contract management work for your business in several ways. Streamlining contract lifecycles is possible for all involved departments, making it easier to contribute to contracting efforts and collaborating on various documents. With all the technological advancements infused in today’s contract management software solutions, it’s clear that utilizing a software platform to oversee all of your company’s contracts is a major key to improving contract operations. Furthermore, contract automation is a feature included in contract management software that has certainly changed the game for many major companies and their management of contracts.
In previous, manual methods of contract management, monitoring the entirety of contract lifecycles was incredibly uncoordinated and unorganized due to outdated systems and ways of storing documents. Imagine heaps of physical copies, filing cabinets, back-and-forth email chains, shared drives, spreadsheets, and more. Tracking versions and maintaining both transparency and visibility is nearly impossible with such an outdated and non-centralized approach. By centralizing contract management with a secure, cloud-based repository as well as employing a standardized system for contracts with contract automation, you can increase accountability, accuracy, and compliance. Automating your contract workflows takes meticulous planning, but once you have automated workflow templates created, sending documents off on a reliable workflow efficiently streamlines your entire contract management system.
An Introduction to Contract Automation
Managing your company’s contracts with outdated methods and decentralized tools like shared drives and filing cabinets creates inefficiencies in the collaboration and tasks required for successful contract management. With the help of a contract automation feature built into your contract management software, you can increase time-efficiency and simplify contract processes for all of your involved departments. By properly using contract automation, you can simultaneously drive results in your business’s contract management, mitigate risk, and increase compliance.
Build Efficiency in Each Stage of the Contract Lifecycle
Reducing human error while increasing efficiency is the goal for any company’s contract management system. Effectively managing a high volume of complex contract lifecycles can be both time-consuming and taxing on different departments involved during various stages. With the right contract management software, you can create simpler processes that allow for better collaboration. Don’t worry about bottlenecks during contract lifecycles – instead, implement customizable and flexible automated contract workflows that notify the right people at the right times to take specific actions on select documents.
Your organization can make use of several different tools to help manage contracts more effectively. User-friendly and intelligent data analytics and reporting features, audit trails, contract templates, preapproved clause libraries, and of course – automated contract workflows – optimize each stage of contract lifecycle management. Monitoring and tracking the status and exact location of each contract is possible with specific contract automation tools that allow you to easily communicate and collaborate during negotiation and approval processes.
Staying up to date on important milestones, deadlines, renewal and expiration dates, obligations, and other key items is easy with automated notifications that keep all the important information visible and top-of-mind. Audit trails and version tracking help maintain accurate and current edits and versions of contracts so that multiple users can work cohesively on the same document. The main benefit that contract automation provides is the ability to save time by automating tasks, allowing for contract managers to allocate more of their time, energy, and resources to initiatives that boost contract performance. Contract automation helps you take control of contract lifecycle management by taking the reins on the technical elements and details of managing numerous contracts, so your contract management team can focus more on the actual contract subjects themselves.
Simplified Contract Generation
Building contracts from scratch can be both difficult and time-consuming. To draft, review, and edit a contract from scratch, it can take an unnecessarily long amount of time – especially considering how this stage requires input from multiple people. In this way, contract generation can be susceptible to errors, and you might also encounter miscommunications and delays along the way. Without appropriate amounts of visibility available for all parties involved, it can be hard to have an understanding and awareness of what versions and templates are current, thus increasing the likelihood of errors when manually creating a contract. If you do not use current, preapproved clauses, legal terminology, and contract templates, you increase the risk of unintentionally generating non-compliant contracts.
However, you’re in luck because contract automation can help with the contract generation stage of contract lifecycle management. The efficiency created through both automation and centralization of your company’s agreements, contracts, and associated documents allows contract managers to easily assemble compliant contracts that integrate your company’s preapproved clauses and data fields. With our contract management software solution, you can implement your contract templates, clauses, and documents seamlessly and export them to different file formats without any complications. Version tracking and built-in redlining make it easy for all involved in contract reviews to stay on the same page of edits and new iterations of the document at hand. Your contract management system administrator can enable custom user permissions and regulations pertaining to versioning and contract management with audit trails and approval routing software features.
Fast, Secure Signing with Electronic Signature Integrations
Collecting signatures for contracts across several locations globally is easy with an electronic signature integration built into your contract management software. A manual wet signature delays contract finalization and execution, wasting both time and resources when mailing physical contracts to signers. In addition, some contracts might require a party to notarize the document, increasing the time spent during this step.
Electronic signature alleviates all of these time-inefficiencies. With e-signature, signers can quickly sign required documents and contracts on their smartphone or other device at any time, any place. A digital signature serves as a unique digital identifier or fingerprint that helps protect the signature’s integrity. Electronic signature software integrations are incredible for increasing the security and safe storage of signed files and will send an alert if there is any detection of tampering.
Automation of Risk Management
Overseeing risk mitigation and management efforts is a challenging task that requires a manual assessment of risk. Conducting risk factor assessments can be expensive and time-consuming; however, contract management software can pinpoint areas of risk potential within your organization and effectively alert your contract administrators of what areas to focus on.
Contract Tracking Made Easy
Tracking all of your organization’s contracts with emails and various outdated manual methods only increases the risk and decreases the ease of your contract management process. Maintain appropriate visibility and knowledge of contract statuses is critical. Manual contract tracking increases risk for compliance complications among other problems.
Centralizing your contracts with a contract repository alleviates issues caused by outdated contract storage methods (i.e. filing cabinets and folders), as these methods create issues with version control and increase the likelihood of document and data loss. Contract management software is helpful in providing valuable insights, notifications, and alerts of version changes and contract expiration and renewal dates. With intelligent contract lifecycle management software, you can be in the loop of contract timelines with dashboards, audit trails, and other modern capabilities.
Our contract management software can help your business’s contract management system with advanced tools that make it easy to track your contracts confidently and accurately. Our SharePoint-based, centralized contract repository gives your business a single, secure location for your contracts, equipped with preapproved clause and contract templates, a user-friendly dashboard, audit trails, and collaboration features. Overseeing every stage of contract lifecycle is detailed, informative, and insightful with the help of our dedicated contract management software solution.
Contract automation has changed the game for contract lifecycle management. 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.
Written by Lindsey Paulk
Lindsey Paulk is a Content Writer in Jacksonville, Florida that specializes in digitally communicating all-things contract management.