Top 5 Excuses for Contract Management Failure and How to Fix Them
The job of a contract manager is not easy. We face challenging situations on a daily basis and, often, feel a bit a overwhelmed trying to juggle multiple contracts at once. While we sometimes face situations that we may not be able to control, we have to focus on what we can control. It’s easy to pass on the buck and blame the issues or errors of a contract on something or someone else. Here is a look at the top 5 excuses from contract managers. Once you read this article, you’ll see just how easy they are to fix with proper planning and access to the right tool(s).
1. The team is full of incompetents.
When using a manual contract management lifecycle, this excuse often comes up. It’s not a surprise that people are unprepared to complete tasks when there is no visibility of those tasks. A paper-based system doesn’t provide the big picture of the project and makes it hard for people to prioritize, especially if they have no idea of of pre-requisites and next steps. Your team members have multiple projects to keep track of, so the best way to succeed is to use a contract management software that allows them to visualize the entire process.
2. I didn’t have enough time.
Out of sight, out of mind. If you’re like most people, you take down notes during most meetings then never take a look at them again. This is why we need reminders, but those reminders shouldn’t depend on somebody remembering to send them. Those reminders should be set in advance and automatically sent to your email inbox without anyone doing anything. This shouldn’t be a manual process involving a spreadsheet, and should adapt automatically throughout the contract lifecycle. You need contract management software that lets you schedule and update automated email remainders so you have more time to work on other, more important tasks.
3. Everybody kept making changes.
Of course it’s going to be hard to keep track of version 22.214.171.124 if you sent it via email to New York-based John, London-based Mary, and Hong Kong-based Mike. Not only do you have to deal with different time zones, but you also never know when one or all of them is working on that specific version. This frustrating process can be fixed with a check-in/check-out feature that allows simultaneous edits to be made and notifies the next reviewer once the document has been updated. Does your email client do that?
4. I couldn’t get the information I needed from department X.
If you are limiting access to key information, such as pre-approved contract templates and clauses, you are limiting the ability for people to carry on their work. Effective contract management cannot exist if all of your forms are locked or stored in a single computer. Your team should be able to access resources from their workstations without interrupting others or having to double check whether or not they are working with the most updated information. An enterprise contract management system enables you to maintain a centralized library with the latest forms and clauses, accessible 24/7/365 to all team members.
5. Working with that client is impossible.
This is a variation of the first excuse, when in fact, we may be the reason why our clients are difficult to work with in the first place. If we are still mailing them hard copies of each agreement via snail mail, forcing them to review documents manually, and having to mail us their revisions, we shouldn’t be surprised that they take so long to return and/or sign documents. An effective contract management process with enhanced document scanning and accurate OCR and electronic signature makes contract execution a breeze and any client to become a pleasure to work with.
The biggest failure of contract management is allowing your job to suffer. By using the right tool, a contract management system like the one from Contract Logix, you can make these top 5 excuses disappear from your contract processes all together.