What are Contract Management Tools?
At their most basic, Contract Management (or Contract Lifecycle Management) tools are simple repositories for contracts. They provide quick access to these documents as well as templates and tools for automating renewals and organizing documents by renewal date, supplier, or spend category.
More advanced tools can partially or fully automate other aspects of the contracting process. Performing as a digital legal team, they'll assess agreements to reveal inefficiencies and instances of non-compliance. They'll even provide suggestions for more strategic negotiations moving forward. They'll embed themselves in your ERP and optimize the entirety of the contracting and negotiations process.
Why Does Procurement Need Them?
As Procurement has evolved from a tactical to a strategic function, its responsibilities have matured considerably. What were once mere purchasing teams are now concerned with the ongoing, all-important process of vendor management. Managing risk and maintaining long-term strategic supplier relationships are crucial components of this process. Contract Management tools make it significantly easier for Procurement to oversee these processes.
A strategic function doesn't have time to go through contracts by hand. Even a well-staffed team can't afford to waste its time and effort manually assessing their agreements. Today's Procurement groups need to turn their attention to more essential, value-adding processes. Additionally, no matter how diligently Procurement's people go about the task, there's still room for human error. Missing a renewal date or letting an inefficient agreement go unchanged could mean significant losses for the entire business. It's never a good idea to trust everything to automation, but letting software do the heavy lifting is a great way to help nurture Procurement's strategic growth.
How Can Source One Help?
Contract Management software still has a long way to go. Leading Procurement departments know that their tools will perform best when they're supplemented by cross-category subject matter expertise and real world negotiation skills. Procurement's widening talent gap means these qualities aren't always easy to come by. That's where Source One's team of Strategic Sourcing experts come in. We'll augment your internal efforts and software solutions with the lessons we've learned over nearly three decades.
Our specialists also know what separates world-class Contract Management software from the pack. Serving as a decision support team, we'll help you select a tool that's optimized to your Procurement team's unique needs. We even offer a low-cost, low-risk solution of our own. WhyAbe, our eSourcing solution not only makes it easy to engage in efficient, transparent sourcing events, but also provides a secure system for assessing and managing your contracts.
Want to learn more? Contact the contracting and negotiations team at Source One today.