5 Key Factors to Streamline Your Contract Workflow Processes

By PracticeLeague, February 4, 2021   |   10 Min Read

Contract management workflow necessarily involves cross functional teams, visibility, and control over the completion of every contractual milestone. Having a robust Contract Lifecycle Management in play enables end-to-end workflow processes from the stage of contract creation to timely approvals and successful implementation.

Contract management is the quintessential function for any business organization that involves collaboration with multi-functional teams, external vendors, and customers. Law departments have a more significant role in ensuring that the contract management processes align with the regulatory compliances and the company's business interests. Even with the best of the teams, contractual processes may still continue to plague most legal departments, amidst other workflow challenges that include: collaborating efficiently with teams, ad-hoc approaches to manage workflows, and streamlining all the individual functions into one. To this end, tech-tools like Contract Lifecycle Management (CLM) ensures prompt generation of contracts, timely approvals, and implementation of contracts that help improve the performance of contracts and allow teams to have timely access and control.

While the legal teams have a greater role in hand to ensure seamless end-to-end contract management, some of the key factors involved in the process for teams working on legal contracts:

Stage 1- Active Collaboration: Initial Stage of Securing A Pre-draft by Contract Request

Request for a contract- The step that marks the beginning of the contract workflow process is a request. This involves:

Before securing the initial draft, businesses must determine the company's interests, the regulatory compliances, and the performance of contracts of similar nature in the given scenario. Focus on the right tool will help businesses determine the contract's terms and reduce overall risk exposure.

Stage 2- Eye for Detail: Template Authoring And Drafting Process

Some contracts may be pretty straightforward, others may be as complicated as it can get. In other words, each contract or agreement is unique in its way. With teams working in tandem to secure contracts, standardized contract types will typically be the go-to for more reasons than one.

For every contract, standard templates serve as a good starting point for companies to streamline the contract lifecycle.

3- Communication and Assessment: For Approvals, Negotiation, and Vetting

Establishing an effective channel for communication is crucial at the point of assessment and evaluation, re-drafting, and review of contracts. This is a pivotal stage involving negotiation, redlining and vetting. The cloud-enabled CLM platform is advantageous as it allows teams to collaborate with external stakeholders, clients/suppliers and ensure that each team member knows about what is happening within the organization. Besides, all the end-users know what is going on with the contract workflow processes.

Stage 4- Centralization of Functions: Contract Implementation and Execution

Contract execution, till date was a manual process of getting the wet signatures on the document. This process also caused inevitable delays, logistical issues and operational hassles. With e-signatures an established practice today, execution of contracts can be done practically from any device, safely and securely that allows businesses to standardize business processes and improve overall customer experience.

Stage 5- Control and visibility: For Renewing or Cancelling Contract

The penultimate stage involves contract renewals upon expiry, negotiations before approvals, and other vetting processes. In a legacy system, notifications and updates had to be tracked and traced manually, which often led to details falling between the cracks. In sharp contrast to the legacy systems, the CLM has features for timely and automated reminders that can significantly reduce the burden of managing contracts during the post-execution stage.

Razor 365 is a robust platform for end-to-end Contract Lifecycle Management. This feature-driven platform allows users to carry out all the functions for contract management right from the stage of authoring to the negotiation stage and the execution of contracts aligned with the business needs.