Made up your mind about using the contract lifecycle management (CLM) platform in your organization but are still confused about the exact way it can help you?
Just choosing a digital contracts platform and implementing it in your organization will not yield the expected results. Without proper mapping, you’ll risk the investment and resources while creating chaos in decision-making. That is surely not what a contract lifecycle management platform is made for.
So, it is essential to not only rely on your contract lifecycle management platform as another instrument. You must adopt a strategic approach to introduce an e-contract platform in your organization. Mapping can play a crucial role in meeting your contract and business goals.
What Opportunities Does a Contract Lifecycle Management Platform Come With?
A contract lifecycle management platform ensures you don’t get stuck in the growth phase of your organization. As soon as a business enters the growth phase, work and associated contracts increase significantly.
Relying on the old approach of signing up, managing, and evaluating contracts will create a mess at the managerial and tactical levels. The result is lost clients, missed deadlines, and unsatisfied customers. A CLM platform in your organization lets you pass this stage with a streamlined approach and get stability.
Moreover, CLM platforms allow you to reduce the manual effort of executing the same work burden. This means lesser time wastage, more productivity, and lesser employee burnout.
As these platforms trigger automation, the risks associated with manual contract approval stages are reduced. Besides, contract performance evaluation and improvement become possible.
Empowerment of Businesses Through CLM Platform in the Digital Age
The digital era requires a proactive approach to sustain in the market. You must be well-aligned with the changing trends to identify and capitalize on the gap for your organization’s benefit. Using a contract lifecycle management platform can let you do that. It helps you address your internal issues with contact handling, so you can free up time and find what you can jump in.
Moreover, with the competition increasing daily, you can’t tolerate losing a client or your well-trained employees because of managerial problems in contract handling. It gets even more important when competitors use such a solution to address similar issues. But your organization is missing them.
Investing in CLM platforms gives businesses the power in their hand to take the lead in the industry and create new customer satisfaction records.
Why Is It Important To Implement and Map CLM Platforms?
Mapping an E-Contract Platform guides you through the exact procedure to get all the benefits you have been expecting. You’ll have a roadmap to follow, thus requiring lesser time in actual implementation.
Besides, you’ll have a cost-benefit analysis guiding you about the areas where you can generate the benefits and describe all the costs (changing processes, resources) that will follow. It will give you a better idea if your organization is ready for implementation. Or if you are ready to invest in it, considering its benefits. But, if you start implementing it immediately, you’ll create turmoil in the organization.
You can even identify low-volume contract processes during the mapping phase, which might change your mind about implementing the digital contracts platform altogether. Similarly, you can identify the functions where the CLM platform will yield results immediately and highlight the ones that need improvement.
Mapping Digital Contracts Platform to Business Process Matrix
Not every business is similar, but its phases are the same. Through these phases, you can have an idea about how to map CLM to your business.
Mapping CLM to Business Processes: A Step-By-Step Guide
Step 1: Identify Key Business Processes
The first step in mapping a CLM platform to your business processes is to identify the key processes that involve contracts. This can include procurement, sales, legal, and finance, among others. Understanding the scope and nature of these processes will help you determine the specific requirements and objectives for your CLM platform.
Step 2: Analyze Existing Contract Processes
Next, analyze your current contract processes to identify inefficiencies, bottlenecks, and areas for improvement. This will help you define the gaps that a CLM platform can fill, ensuring that the solution you choose aligns with your business needs.
Step 3: Define Requirements and Objectives
Once you’ve identified your key business processes and analyzed your existing contract processes, it’s time to define the requirements and objectives for your CLM platform. This should include specific features, such as automation, reporting, and integration capabilities, as well as broader objectives, such as improving compliance, reducing risk, and increasing efficiency.
Step 4: Choose the Right CLM Platform
With your requirements and objectives defined, it’s time to choose the right CLM platform for your business. There are many options available, so it’s important to carefully evaluate each platform’s features, pricing, and support to find the one that best meets your needs. You may want to request a demo or trial period to see how the platform works in practice.
Step 5: Configure and Customize the Platform
After selecting your CLM platform, the next step is to configure and customize it to fit your business processes. This may involve setting up templates, workflows, and approval processes, as well as customizing the user interface to align with your branding and requirements.
Step 6: Integration with Existing Systems
To maximize the benefits of your CLM platform, it’s essential to integrate it with your existing systems, such as CRM, ERP, and accounting software. This will help ensure a seamless flow of data between systems and improve overall efficiency.
Step 7: Implement and Train Users
Once your CLM platform is configured, customized, and integrated, it’s time to implement it across your organization. This includes training your users on how to use the platform effectively. Providing comprehensive training and support will help ensure a smooth transition and maximize user adoption.
Step 8: Monitor and Optimize
Finally, continuously monitor the performance of your CLM platform and optimize it based on feedback from users and performance metrics. This will help you get the most out of your investment and ensure ongoing success.
Tips for Mapping a CLM Platform for Your Business
Here are the tips that might help install the contract lifecycle management platform in your business:
- Set a clear focus before you integrate the contract lifecycle management platform.
- Define all the processes and stakeholders.
- Create an inclusive environment for all the stakeholders involved.
- Outline KPIs and your expectations with the process, CLM platform, and stakeholders to get the best results.
- Do not forget to integrate the change management and mapping processes.
Once you map and install a CLM platform customized to your business needs, you can expect lower time for repetitive contract-related tasks. Moreover, other advantages to expect are improved employee efficiency, reduced costs, and lower employee burnout.
But, all these benefits depend on streamlining the entire contract lifecycle, in which mapping plays a significant role.
Olga V. Mack is Vice President at LexisNexis® and CEO of CounselLink® CLM, a next-gen contract management company that has pioneered digital negotiation technology.
An award-winning general counsel and operations professional, Olga embraces legal innovation and has dedicated her career to improving and shaping the future of law. She shares her views in her columns at Above the Law, Forbes, Bloomberg Law, Association of Corporate Counsel (ACC) Docket, and more.