The strength of an organisation’s contract lifecycle hinges on a healthy contract strategy.  An ironclad contract procedure helps departments within your organisation come to a universal adoption of contract processes that improve contract performance.  A contract strategy that leverages leading contract management software equips you with advanced tools for organised, cost-effective and efficient contract management.  Organisations can employ a winning contract strategy for future-minded, AI-based contract management.

Manual contract management doesn’t cut it

Depending on contract volume, document complexity and your own approach, contract strategy development can require significant time and resources.  This is especially true if you practice tedious copying and pasting of individual contract clauses from a myriad of agreements and have to repeatedly explain the language used, the fallbacks and the typical objections to a clause.

Without the assistance of leading contract lifecycle management software, organisations are have to manually review past contract clauses and contract performance trends.  All clause instances in which a template has been deviated from need to be accounted for.  And your contract administrators need to find out why these deviations have occurred creating potential fallbacks, and they have to keep relevant departments abreast of the entire process using emails and spreadsheets.

Additionally, you need a chain of approval for procedures when counterparties don’t agree to standard terms or fallbacks.  This approval process may involve phone calls, emails and other possibly inefficient communication methods.  Next, risk and reward are balanced out in the interest of deciding how to proceed with these contracts.  This process often calls for error-prone and tiresome analysis and calculation.

Finally, plans for a manual signature process are often paper-based and slow – likely wasting administrative money, such as post, and time.  Antiquated signature procedures that rely on printers, paper, wet signatures, mail and regular follow up can result in contract execution bottlenecks and a compromised reputation.

A contract strategy with contract automation

Thankfully, virtually all these money- and time-wasting challenges can be avoided.  You can quickly create a reliable contract strategy for present and future contracts with the aid of robust and scalable contract management software!

For improved clause management and analysis, AI-based contract management tools help your teams create a pre-approved clause library.  This unified repository of standard, alternative and fallback clauses can be used for swift inclusion during contract writing.  It can also help with contract negotiations, permitting approval personnel to access, edit and insert standard, alternative and fallback language as redlines with ease.

Straightforward and user-friendly rules-based clause inclusion helps you stay aware of where and when within an agreement a specific clause should be inserted and when to use fallback clauses and alternative clauses.

Clauses can be designated as negotiable or non-negotiable.  Clauses that are designated as non-negotiable can be set to restrict editing within the system.  So rather than manually keeping track of which clauses can and can’t be amended, you can lock specific clauses instead.

A contract strategy reliant on contract management software can remove the need for spreadsheets, email and other potentially inefficient communication about contracts that need to analysed for risk.  Contract intelligence help you assess and mitigate risk, and can identify clause language and provide alternate recommendations with the help of fuzzy language matching.

Intelligent clause extraction and clause identification improve and expand machine learning.  The tool finds standard clauses within a contract document when that document is added into a contract management software system.  Users can add text from clauses to your training data for continuous machine learning.

A simplified review of possible risk areas takes the place of manual scanning of a document for keywords.  A dynamic, intelligent visual aid – such as a risk assessment matrix tool – can equip you with the tools needed to visualise and analyse potential risk outcomes rapidly.

Once a contract strategy is put into place for contract generation, contract negotiation and risk analysis, you can apply the same foresight and preparation for electronic signature processes.  Luckily, with trusted electronic signature software, organisations like yours can set up a procedure that allows for signing essentially anywhere and anytime.  With secure one-off signatures, rapid signing and a rules-based process, you can have a method that works in-office or remotely to expedite eSignatures and approvals.  Rules-based chains of approval, configured alerts and fully electronic signature templates add up to an automated process for contract strategies that is easy to adopt and comprehend.

Optimise your contract strategy today

Proper contract strategy is paramount for adequate contract management.  A contract strategy supported by AI-based contract management software that supports contract automation fosters a user-friendly, streamlined and cost-effective procedures.  The contract management software solution we recommend is Contract Insight®.

Contract Insight from Four

Contract Insight is a cloud-hosted (SaaS) or deployed (on-premise) contract management solution.  The acclaimed platform is trusted by thousands of professionals for their contract management, legal document managementprocurement and sourcing needs.  Used by many Fortune 500 companies, Contract Insight gives you real time visibility into your contracts. It doesn’t just shore up your security; it will help you meet contract compliance regulations, centralise your contract management and improve your overall contract administration process.

For more information, contact John O’Brien, CEO at Four Business Solutions, global business consultants and software integrators providing business processes improvements in FinanceSupply Chain and Operations, across a broad range of industries.