Legal professionals face ever-increasing volumes of legal work, and they struggle to complete the evolving complex demands of their in-house legal function.  When it seems like there isn’t enough time in the day to reach your company’s goals, the path to better document management can be found with the right legal filing system or intelligent contract lifecycle management.

The disadvantages of manual legal document management

A manual approach to in-house legal document management typically includes spreadsheets, stacks of paper, filing cabinets, shared drives and outdated legal management systems.  This antiquated strategy leads to:

  • costly human errors that can result in compliance issues and fines
  • damaged or misplaced documents
  • increased security risk for files containing sensitive information
  • lack of collaboration and storing functionality
  • long contract assembly-to-execution rates. 

Manual document management simply takes up too much of a legal professional’s day, leading to undue stress, too much time being spent on routine tasks that don’t add value and increased spend on external legal support.  Your in-house legal teamcan be left in a position where they’re unable to stay effectively involved in all phases of contract lifecycle management or guide the legal department on the best way to meet critical objectives.

Automated contract management offers support for the legal team

Your in-house legal team now has an unprecedented opportunity to take legal contract administration from routine daily tasks to a value-centric process that will be appreciated across the business.  The first step is to assess how documents are currently being managed within the legal department and throughout the entire organisation to reveal the specific challenges that need to be solved. 

Common challenges include missed key dates and renewals, lack of document version control, cumbersome contract drafting, negotiation bottlenecks, too many clause revisions, contract inconsistencies, process inefficiencies and more.

From manual legal filing to a legal contract lifecycle management

A legal filing system provides centralised technology that includes legal document management software and document assembly software that can help legal departments manage all phases of the corporate contract lifecycle from pre-execution to post-execution steps, including:

  • contract requests
  • document assembly
  • approvals
  • searching
  • document storage
  • contract tracking
  • alerts
  • eSignatures
  • workflows
  • reports.

Making the case for contract lifecycle management

When your corporate legal department is ready to invest in a legal filing system, consider the solution’s ease-of-use when uploading legacy contracts to the system, employee role-based access options, implementation set-up time, depth and breadth of features and the best strategy to get buy-in from management.

Contract lifecycle management across your legal filing system will result in:

  • improved document security
  • an easy-to-access central repository
  • document version control
  • audit trails for improved compliance
  • workflow automation for process efficiencies
  • alerts
  • reporting
  • user-friendly dashboards for transparency
  • fast ROI.

Contract management software can help legal departments improve legal spend against budget, decrease contract cycle times, and increase the volume and accuracy of contracts managed.  The right legal filing system will help your legal department meet their objectives of identifying, monitoring, and mitigating risk, while increasing the actual value and the perceived value of the legal function.

Contract Insight from Four Business Solutions

Contract Insight’s contract management software is a robust, user-friendly solution that benefits thousands of users in large and small organisations throughout the public and private sector.  It’s flexible and configurable and can meet your specific needs.  If you’d like a demo of Contract Insight or simply to find out more about what we do, please call John O’Brien at Four Business Solutions on 0800 6250 025.

About Four 

Four helps small and multi-national organisations enrich the way they work. From supply chain to procurement and contract management, we have decades of experience helping companies forge ahead in the global market. 

John O’Brien is the CEO at Four Business Solutions, global business consultants and software integrators providing business processes improvements in Finance, Supply Chain and Operations, across a broad range of industries.