Quality Contract Management: What to Look For
In any nascent business and industry, the primary goal is to get the engine started. Players in the market focus more on developing solutions – meeting particular business needs – than the quality of services and products, itself.
But I take exception to this idea. Of late, the in-house legal market hasn’t only ignited; rather, it has caught fire in terms of general counsel offices adopting brand-new technologies. Among the hottest have been contract management systems (CMS) and others supporting legal operations teams. Yet, despite the fact that this market and systems are relatively new, quality contract management technology is not something to overlook.
HIGH-QUALITY CONTRACT MANAGEMENT
Just about any vendor can create a contract management solution. But only a few will succeed at creating a quality CMS that:
- Gets customers talking straightaway
- Functions well, going beyond the basics of the job
- Practitioners learn how to use deeply
The perception of quality among your internal users is important. So quality contract management software has to hit on all of these attributes in order to satisfy every customer.
At the end of the day, you need a system that helps to improve your agreements management process and provides feedback on the performance of your contracts. In other words, a system that gives you the ROI that you need.
DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION: QUALITY OF SERVICE
Quality contract management is one that offers general counsels a solution for their legal digital transformation, right out of the box!
No doubt, if you are looking for a contract lifecycle management (CLM) system, in particular, you probably want to improve your overall contracting process. Perhaps it’s about having a centralized repository for all of your contracts. Or maybe it’s about discovering your standard terms and conditions. Whatever the case may be, the overarching goal should be modernizing your legal team, providing it with a system that helps them become far more efficient and effective. And that means digitally transforming your agreements process.
Next, you need to find a vendor that will help you during your digital transformation journey. Look for the solution provider who can deliver a full digital transformation project – in one major stage. Don’t settle for anything less; it’s one less hurdle for you to overcome on your own!
Let’s face it, it’s easy for any system vendor to tell you that they do their job well – that quality contract management is at the core of what they do. Don’t believe a word from any of them! And, yes, that includes us!
Seek a vendor that helps you with your full digital transformation journeyTrue customer satisfaction isn’t just articulated in the nicest, glossiest marketing brochures. What’s important is what customers, themselves, say about the products, services, and the digital transformation process.
Jerry Levine, general counsel at IPsoft, emphasizes the importance of including the general counsel in the decision-making process when researching CLMs. You need a general counsel to help define the look, feel, and capabilities of the system. This will ensure success for the entire legal team. Also, it is important to ask your vendor questions about the software’s capabilities and maintain a close working relationship with Customer Success Managers.
GUIDE AND CHECKLIST
Today, every general counsel’s office is looking to do ‘more for less.’ In fact, it is the legal industry’s catchphrase, truly characterizing our day-to-day business dealings. A rather low-hanging fruit, CLM systems make this legal digital transformation a reality. But it’s important to seek out a quality CMS instead of the very first system that seems to ‘do the job.’
A helpful guide is our recently-released Contract Management Primer, which includes a checklist concerning quality contract management solutions. It was developed by asking customers about the attributes that are important to their system performance. Download our guide today, and use it as you embark on your own digital transformation journey.
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