So while everyone has been focused on those documents, the organization has been running around trying to manage them - literally.
Effective contract management embeds risk assessment so that corporate counsel, procurement and contract administrators can move from just monitoring compliance to protecting the organization from substandard returns. Dynamic contract management constantly pushes the firm to recognize a wider range of external factors with blindsiding potential. Fresh from salvaging a technology project sale bedeviled by a series of document errors, near misses on deadlines and late nights, ita€™s become apparent that technology, e-procurement expertise, contract management plans, deep pockets, or even possession of all of these things, is not going to save us; not now, probably not ever, from recurring (and expensive) business issues. Instead the entire process was wracked by a bewildering tangle of  incorrect prices, confusion on terms, document rewrites, numerous phone calls, chains of e-mail, the risk of missed deadlines and most importantly, a potential loss of trust and client goodwill. Ita€™s the last week in the quarter, and wea€™re energized for our client, having secured for them an exceptionally favorable interest rate for a multi-year lease on the servers and storage equipment for this project.
The next morning we receive an e-mail from the client telling us how very pleased they were with the lease price of the equipment, which was several thousand dollars less than what we had actually quoted, and to my horror, far below our cost.  How did this happen? Hours of damage control and several reworks later, including painstaking manual review at each process step to insure accuracy, we finally succeed in assuaging customer doubts and securing a set of corrected, verified and complete documents. For most corporate law departments, contract management eats up a staggering amount of time. Corporate law departments can enhance all stages of cradle-to-grave contract management by following 10 simple best practices.
If youa€™re trying to improve your contract lifecycle management process, there are a number of ways you can go.
But if youa€™re really serious about revamping your entire contract management process for optimal efficiency (and bottom-line savings), consider engaging a firm that provides contract management services. In short, therea€™s so much more to a€?getting it righta€? than just implementing software. In a previous post, we discussed the idea of launching a contract management project that trims the fat from your contract lifecycle. As contracts make their way through the organization, operational and legal teams must manually enter the same information multiple times, while also correcting whatever inconsistencies and inaccuracies theya€™re able to catch. You can avoid this by codifying all your contract policies and procedures into a self-enforcing system that interfaces with your other business systems. Too many attorneys waste too much potentially productive time typing missing information into business systems.
By putting clear expectations in place for your requestors, you can ensure theya€™ll provide certain essential pieces of information before your legal team even sees their contract request. Even the most conscientious legal department will eventually let compliance issues slip through the cracks unless they have an automated workflow solution that self-enforces policies. Contract Management Best Practice #4: Create an online repository for contracts and frequently used clauses. Why reinvent the wheel each time you include a liability or termination for cause clause in a contract?
If you havena€™t optimized your contract management lifecycle, then chances are, ita€™s needlessly taking up the time and bandwidth of your in-house attorneys. After: Fewer phone calls and emails from contract requestors means more time for high-value, high-risk work.
After: Less attorney data entry and less mandatory overtime leads to higher retention rates. After: A real-time view of how many contracts are under review, and of how many contain active risks or are coming up for termination. After: Legal policies are now embedded in how the request information is gathered and routed. If youa€™re serious about launching a contract management project that trims the fat from your contract request process, ita€™s best to work with a consulting firm that knows where the low-hanging fruit is a€“ and what the best practices are for earning a quick payback.
Click the below link to view the course syllabus, and for detailed guidance on the course content and price. Complete this Booking Form and enter your specific dates for on-site training – minimum of 8 participants. Complete this Booking Form and enter your specific dates for on-site training – minimum of 8 participants. Once the form is received the Training Registrar will contact you to complete the process. The course is especially referring to management and staff of all corporate divisions, particularly quality management officers and individuals interested in performing audits. The target group for this qualification includes those personnel who are involved in a practical way in restoring agreed service levels to the customer as soon as possible, responding to service requests (password resets, equipment moves), minimizing disruption to the customer by identification and analysis of the cause of incidents, managing Incidents and Problems to closure, incident registration, classification, escalation, resolution and closure, maintaining Knowledge Repositories, Proactive Problem Management including Incident Trend analysis, reporting on Incidents and Problems and keeping End Users informed and recommend improvements to eliminate causes of Incidents.
Public courses are held at our training facilities in Dallas, the District of Columbia, and San Diego. Customer on-site courses with certification examination or customized training are available upon request.

Once you have completed the Booking Form and submitted it, you shall receive confirmation that your booking has been received. Flanked by experienced partners with vast resources, specialized skills in contract management services and enviably advanced technology, this integrated solution sale should have been a breeze. We submit the standard VAR documentation to the equipment vendor who owned the next step in the process; coordinating with the financing company to get lease documents prepared for client signature.
The process ensures that the wrong people, with the wrong information are making key financial decisions for multiple parties (not just themselves, but the reseller, leasing company and the end-customer)!  Talk about liability, not to mention WASTE! And they would have --- if the right person actually was involved at the next step a€“ but NOPE a€“ doesna€™t happen. Ita€™s a multi-stage process that extends beyond the task of actually assembling a document. Just by examining your current workflow, you can probably find some low-hanging fruit for improvement a€“ a few inefficiencies that you can eliminate simply by having a meeting and improving communication.
Your service provider can take an objective look at your current workflows, figure out where the problems lie, and craft a plan.
Your partner should be much more than a mere IT consulting firm that can implement software. Dona€™t be fooled by the promise that if you implement a certain workflow or BPM tool, it will give you better business processes than the ones you already have. Want to find out more about the proven process Elegrity uses in providing contract management services to clients? Oh, sure, the legal department tries to police contract policies and procedures, but they do it manually. Youa€™ll eliminate the need for your legal team to dig for this information a€“ and youa€™ll ensure that the contract lifecycle will go smoothly and painlessly for everyone involved. In an automated system, your policy wona€™t just be documenteda€”it will actually run the process. You could work more hours a€“ and encourage your colleagues in the corporate legal department to do the same. Launch a contract management project that focuses on optimizing your contract lifecycle, and youa€™ll be surprised at the results. Theya€™ll urge you to implement a certain workflow solution, BPM platform, or contract management application. Most technology platforms used by corporate legal departments are designed based on legal industry best practices. Your goal with a new legal technology platform will be to tweak built-in best practices to support the way you work. Youa€™ll need your technology platform to collect the exact pieces of information you want end users to provide on contract requests. Data such as vendor addresses and cost center information is most likely scattered across your enterprise.
Your contract approval process will most likely involve approvers from multiple business units, and extensive input from the financial organization. Although the course is expanding on internal and external audits, it does not prepare candidates for processing certification-audits on behalf of accredited certification authorities. In addition to the process requirements, it encompasses the practical knowledge for the implementation of new or changed services. An agreement however is only formed at the point at which our Training Department informs you of the acceptance of your booking request. Should you notify us of any changes by telephone, KEDARit shall also require you to confirm this in writing.
Unfortunately, rather than getting the lease documents concurrently to finance, VAR purchasing and project management teams to verify them against customer purchase orders, sales requisitions and project plans, the unoptimized workflow causes the documents to advance to systems engineering.
Technology gives us very powerful tools to leverage and workflow can help automate the process, but effective business process management is the lynchpin; the system transforming all the pieces into a delivered solution that differentiates the vendor and delights the customer. I suspect ita€™s because theya€™re not adequately prepared for everything that contract management entails.
During the request phase, your end users will submit the details of what they want the contract to include.
With guidelines in hand from the contract request, attorneys will then draft the actual contract. As youa€™re interviewing a potential provider, make sure they have experience working closely with companies to understand their business processes and implement technology that enhances those processes.
Few actually understand the contract lifecycle process that occurs in a corporate legal department.
Excuse me, but your processes are your processes, and you shouldna€™t have to apologize for them!

Make sure your partner understands what kind of technology your employees are used to, and how willing they are to change.
On the one hand, you dona€™t want your implementation to place an undue burden on your companya€™s IT staff.
Download a case study on how Elegrity helped a growing biopharmaceutical company streamline contract management.
We mentioned that ita€™s best to work with a consulting partner that can apply best practices to help you find the low-hanging fruit for rapid improvements in your contract process. Meanwhile, users contact the legal department frequently for basic information, clarifications, and status updates.
Just download Elegritya€™s free white paper, a€?Ten Best Practices for Efficient Contract Management,a€? and learn how easy it can be to transform your contract management process from a time-sink into a highly optimized workflow. Most corporate legal departments have at least a few areas in which they can afford to tighten up their business processes.
At the same time, Legal gets to use the bandwidth they recovered through your new efficiencies to spend more time scrutinizing contracts for problematic items, averting problems before they happen.
And if you do purchase and implement these technologies, youa€™ll probably see an initial spike in the productivity of your corporate legal team. In some ways this is a good thing, because it means youa€™ll be able to leverage some of the efficiencies other companies have achieved.
The standard language you require for contracts may be stored in a content management system.
We develop a phased approach with you and your staff, with each phase building upon the successes of the previous phase. The infrastructure team reviews equipment specifications, because after all, thata€™s their only responsibility, right?  Well, that all looks good, so guess what happens next?
The real value-added work is in writing the parts of the contract that apply to this particular business relationship. Here, attorneys will route the contract to different departments such as finance, procurement, manufacturing, and HR.
The change order process often includes end users who provide incomplete information about what they want to see changed in the original contract, and attorneys must again scramble to fill in the gaps a€“ taking time away from their strategic work. But unless attorneys have constant visibility into expiration dates, and receive reminders that these dates are approaching, the tasks around termination and renewal are often rushed a€“ and rushed work is poor-quality work. Any BPM systems you add from now on should interface and exchange information with them, eliminating the need for manual data entry during the contract process.
Your contract management services provider should be capable of doing the bulk of the work. Youa€™ll save countless man-hours per year and free up much more of your attorneysa€™ time to focus on the unique portions of each contract. Make a few simple changes, and you could noticeably boost your companya€™s bottom line a€“ without burning yourself out or losing headcount.
Attorneys spend hours filling in information that the contract requestor should have provided. To increase your departmenta€™s accuracy and reduce the need for manual data entry, youa€™ll need your contract management solution to tap into all of these systems at just the right stage of the contract management process. End users fill out forms with the details of their desired contracts, and attorneys then have to enter the information manually into a corporate data system. If corporate law departments dona€™t use a centralized solution to manage this routing, theya€™ll have little visibility into where a contract is at any given moment. Otherwise, you may end up with a theoretically great solution that nobody uses a€“ and what good is that?
On the other hand, youa€™ll want your partner to involve your IT staff just enough to pass along knowledge that will help them maintain and support your new BPM system in the future.
This tedious manual work distracts attorneys from the high-value work they should be doing.
Unfortunately, some corporate law departments dona€™t maintain a central clause repository, but instead attempt to re-write these clauses each time, or simply pull them from the last contract they can find on the network.
More emails and more phone calls mean more delays a€“ and possibly a missed opportunity for the business.

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