When you think about contract management you automatically think about the contracts you signed to open, maintain and run your business. Contracts can define how your business runs and either decrease or increase your productivity. It is important to have a clear understanding of the tasks and expectations that both you and your clients have. Businesses regularly deal with Non-Disclosure Agreements (NDAs), service agreements and standard licensing agreements. All these agreements require some form of acceptance and due diligence. In other words, these agreements often need to be both accessible and secure.
The Bare Bones of Contract Management
All this paperwork and electronic documentation need to be tracked at some point in its lifecycle. You may need to consult a contract to amend it to reflect changes or consult it to ensure that it is being enforced. It is important, especially with sensitive information that the data remain secure and easily accessible. This can be difficult when you have multiple templates, a disorganized filing system or no retrieval pattern. A typical contract goes through eight stages in its lifecycle. These are:
- Requesting a bid or offer for products or services
2. Generating the initial bids and offers
3. Working on terms and conditions of the initial contract and weeding out bids
4. Approving the final contract(s) after rounds of bids and offers
5. Executing the terms and conditions of the contract(s)
6. Answering questions and testing out of products or services. (This sometimes occurs between the second and third stage as the research and reporting stage.)
7. Reviewing test results looking for compliance issues and other problems
8. Making any changes either at the beginning or near the end of the contract’s expiration date.In a paper-based system, it sometimes can be difficult to track documentation. Electronic systems, however, are reliable in allowing users to pull up contracts quickly. This can be important when someone is looking for a warranty or needs to make some changes. Contract management software can help eliminate unnecessary research on files that may have been misplaced or misdirected.Benefits of Good Contract Management
You should already understand enough about how contract negotiation can make or break your business. You should also understand that having good control over your contracts can benefit your company in many ways. Good contract management can increase your Return on Investment (ROI) by showing your clients and vendors that you are dependable. It can provide your customers with the tools they need to comply with rules and regulations. It also helps you to comply with rules and regulations. It allows your employees to concentrate on sales and not contract management. Good contract management provides employees with the necessary information they need to increase revenue. You can provide accurate milestones, so your project(s) can be completed on time and on budget. Electronically centralized data streams are best with dealing with multiple contracts. Good intelligence can help your business thrive and prosper in the market.