Before you begin: Start with the data!
If you want to be successful at managing your contracts and accelerating deals, the best place to start is with the contracts that currently run your business. Specifically, this means taking all those existing agreements and getting them digitized, so you can extract key terms and understand what’s in them.
The data on what terms are in your contracts will guide all the other things you do to be great at contracts.
With all your contracts digitized and centralized in a contract repository, you can start to analyze their terms and better position the legal department to manage its work on contracts going forward. Reviewing data on key contract terms will give you insights into what you can do to improve your contracts and will help you understand what terms you negotiate the most.
From this information, you can develop a contracting playbook. More sophisticated and well-resourced legal departments can take it further and automate routinely negotiated terms modification.
Contract data is the foundation for contract management success. By digitizing your historical agreements and understanding what you’ve got–you’ll have a valuable quick win under your belt and be far on your way to great contracting.
Faster Contracts = Faster Revenue, Three Slam Dunk Approaches to Increase your Contracting Velocity
1. Know everything about your current contracts!
What? Use data from existing contracts to expedite the review and creation of new contracts.
Why? As I stated above, data on what terms you negotiated in prior deals, either with the same party or similar ones, accelerates your review of the current deal. Utilizing the most relevant insights from previous agreements minimizes the time spent manually drafting contracts or creating templates so you can focus on closing deals.
How? Digitize your contracts into a single repository. One that ensures you can easily and quickly find and understand key terms with 99%+ accuracy (without all the manual effort!).
2. Automate routine changes!
What? Manual legal efforts can create bottlenecks during the contracting process — improving or removing these manual efforts can accelerate contracting velocity.
Why? You know the routine changes you make to your agreement terms and the paradigm of how they can and should be made. Work with the business to automate the modification of those terms.
How? Partner with relevant stakeholders in Sales, SalesOps/RevOps, BusOps, LegalOps, Finance, etc. to establish a low-touch contract process that automates as much of the process as possible.
3. Reduce touch!
What? Reduce the work required to create a contract and the number of touches a contract requires to be finalized.
Why? The more steps you put in place, the longer the journey takes to make a contract and realize revenue. Eliminating touch where possible instead of introducing more–like in the case of overly complicated workflows–is an ideal way to speed up your contracting process and accelerate deals.
How? Avoid imposing overly complicated workflows on you or your business. Instead, find ways to simplify contracting and eliminate as many steps as possible.