What is Contract Management: The Essential Guide

Contract Management

What is Contract Management: The Essential Guide

Fact: contract management is a time-consuming part of business no matter your industry. It’s widely accepted that contracts are, well, kind of a pain. Your agreements, and the way they’re written and carried out, inform many of your organization’s processes—and when you run into red tape, chances are, contracts are behind it. When the contracting process is running smoothly, it’s invisible to those not involved – and yet, when something goes wrong, it seems everything screeches to a halt. If this is you—you’re not alone. In fact, poor contract management attributes to most organizations losing up to 9% when it comes to their bottom line. That’s because while your contracts, and their terms and clauses, are constantly evolving, your process for managing agreements probably isn’t.

What is contract management?

Contract management or CLM is the process of handling agreements made with customers, vendors, partners, and employees. Contract types include MSAs, NDAs, lease agreements, SOWs, and employment or vendor agreements…and many more. Managing contracts means negotiating and handling the deadlines, deliverables, and the terms and conditions within these agreements. It also means verifying compliance and tracking changes during the contract lifecycle. Plus, keeping track of and reporting on those agreements post-execution—what’s working, what’s not, how performance is tracking. The list goes on.

In short—contract management is everything your organization does to create, negotiate, sign, manage, and analyze your agreements.

What is the contract management process?

Depending on where you are, the contract management process typically consists of seven steps: Planning, creation, approval, negotiation, execution, administration, and reporting.

Click here to download our full CLM guide to learn more about all seven steps.

What are some contract management tools?

But shouldn’t there be a better, faster way? We thought you’d never ask. Bringing your contracts into the digital age can speed things along. Automating them can give your team back hours in their week. Here are just a few tools that may optimize the way your team’s managing contracts.

  1. Electronic signature programs: Make sure your customers don’t have to rely on printing contracts to sign and return their agreements to you.
  2. CLM Software: If you want to truly accelerate your contract management process, you need a new system. One that will streamline your agreement process. Enter IntelAgree. IntelAgree is a secure, cloud-based contract management software that uses AI and machine learning to optimize the CLM process.

What next?

The contract management process is time-consuming for most organizations—it has to be in order to keep risk low. For most companies, it’s somewhere between 30 and 60 days. While your average might be more or less, every day your contract spends in various phases of the process is another day of lost revenue. We can help.

Schedule a demo to see how IntelAgree can simplify your agreements.

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