The Non-Negotiables of Contract Automation
Tools for managing contracts and contracting processes have existed for decades. Traditional contract lifecycle management (CLM) systems were aimed at digitizing existing processes, while tools like Microsoft Word aimed to digitize physical documents. In the new era of the cloud, AI, and in a business world where speed everything, it’s time to move to contract automation. Digitization was about replacing processes from paper to computers, automation is about transforming the processes so that both contracts and people are more effective.
When looking to invest in contract automation software, it’s important to understand the features and functions that are essential for your organization. Every business is different, so it’s important to identify the specific needs of your team in order to find the right solution. That said, there are some key features that are essential for any organization looking to automate its contract management process.
The contract automation solution you choose should upgrade your contracting process. It should empower your people to work faster, smarter, and better together.
Faster, smarter, together with contract software
Automation eliminates a lot of the manual and repetitive tasks that have historically been associated with drafting, reviewing, negotiating, and managing contracts.
No more endless hours of people-chasing, reinventing new contracts for every deal, being a redline reconciliation monkey, or policing versions. With contract automation, the system should do this for you and proactively move the contract forward.
Speed alone is not enough. You also need to make smart decisions. Understanding roles and responsibilities, contract status, deadlines, what’s being negotiated by whom, what risk you have with non-standard clauses, as well as contract completion metrics significantly improve the quality of your contracts and reduce risk. Your contract automation solution should provide you with control over workflows and visibility into historical and real-time data.
Working on contracts used to be fragmented, but today’s business demands more collaboration. Along with moving faster and smarter, people can deliver much better contracts through constructive collaboration across internal and external stakeholders.
Your contract automation solution should break down the barriers caused by manual processes and provide a collaborative space for people to contribute to the contract’s success.
Define your success outcomes
While you’ll find a lot of similar features and functionality from one contract automation solution to the next, make sure you define clear outcomes that you’re looking to achieve. Faster, smart, and better together is what we stand for at Parley Pro, and we believe these should be your non-negotiables when choosing a solution.
Efficiency in Contract Automation
There are a few key features to look for in a CMS if you want it to improve your negotiation process:
The traditional redlining process can go months until both parties come to an agreement. Using traditional methods also makes it difficult to track changes to the document. A contract automation platform makes this process far more efficient by giving stakeholders access to the document at all times, tracking edits in real-time, storing contracts in a central repository, and maintaining formats throughout negotiations.
Efficient digital collaboration
Emailing doesn’t allow the level of collaboration needed for effective negotiations. CMS provides the tools that allow your team to collaborate to achieve your company’s contract goals. With this software, team members can see every interaction along with the context of actions taken by others. Users can also communicate directly on the platform through comments, ensuring that everyone is involved.
Traditional negotiation often results in legal teams working on different versions of the same contract. A CLM ensures that everyone has access to the most recent version of the document to eliminate the chance of confusing versions. The platform also stores previous versions of the agreement, so you can see how it changed over time.
It’s inefficient to start from scratch whenever your company is negotiating a new business deal. This is why contract agreement templates are a crucial part of any CMS. Auto-fill templates allow you to utilize standard clauses and terms to spend time on the more important elements of negotiation.
Choose The Right Platform For Contract Negotiation
Choosing a contract management platform for your business negotiations can be an intimidating task. Each software provider offers different benefits and features that may be a good fit for some businesses but not for others. Features aside, when choosing a negotiation platform, consider a few things about your business needs.
Ease of use
In order for a negotiation platform to be successful, your team has to be willing to use it in the first place. Ease of use and convenience will encourage your team to try out the software and use it consistently long-term.
Potential for collaboration
Collaboration is needed in any negotiation. So, when choosing a CLM for your business, be sure that it can foster the levels of collaboration that your team needs to achieve success. For example, if your team is working remotely, you will want a platform that offers the most digital collaboration tools.
The right negotiation platform should fit your business. This means that it needs to have the potential for customization so that you can shape it to fit your company’s unique needs. Using a customizable platform allows you to integrate it with existing solutions, create personalized dashboards, and generate personalized documents and templates.
You should have insight into the performance of your agreements at all times. This means having data on KPIs, identifying risks, and having the capability to track negotiations at every stage. This allows your business to focus on business opportunities rather than attempting to track data manually.
About Parley Pro
Parley Pro helps businesses get more from their contracts by transforming them into strategic, digital assets — giving them the tools to create, negotiate, manage, automate, and optimize contracts to streamline business objectives, maximize revenue and reduce risk.