How to boost efficiency in your contract process

GC outlines three ways to add "unprecedented" efficiency using the latest technology

How to boost efficiency in your contract process

Since the Industrial Revolution, and even as far back as the development of the wheel, innovation has fueled human progress. One technology after another has made day-to-day life—and work—much easier for everyone.

Artificial intelligence and automation tools are the next iteration of that, and in the world of contract generation and management, these technologies are adding unprecedented efficiencies to legal teams’ efforts. In doing so, it’s helping them to improve the business overall. Just consider the numbers. When ContractPodAi surveyed legal professionals around the world recently, we found that teams with manual legal processes missed their contractual obligations 75 percent more than those with contract lifecycle management (CLM) systems. What’s more, teams with fully automated practices reduced contract delays caused by staff shortages and heavy workloads by 50 percent and had a greater ability to see the contractual risks that lay ahead.

Legal professionals in the Asia Pacific region spend more time managing and maintaining agreements than those in other regions. This is leading to unnecessary delays in contract lifecycles, not to mention overlooked expirations and renewals. But with AI to support legal processes, legal professionals in the APAC region can add unprecedented efficiencies to their contracting like some of the teams we surveyed. No more lengthy contract drafting and review times, perpetual back-and-forths over email, and the potential losses that come with missed deadlines and weak contractual language. Instead, wholly streamlined contracting, and completely new sets of checks and balances. Given that an average company can manage between 20,000 and 40,000 active contracts at any given time, those efficiencies really add up in the long run. Legal departments that marry technology to their contract management reap the rewards in three main ways:

1. Eliminating Silos

For anyone who manages contracts manually, they’re no stranger to the challenges that come with this. By using traditionally independent processes and systems, information and data can become lost when organizations leave the organizations. Furthermore, it’s challenging to share any insights from the data with the greater business.

Enter legal automation. This makes the data and insights available and searchable across the company, creating better visibility and analysis opportunity. This also brings real-time document collaboration with to your team. At last, you and your clients, partners, and suppliers can all be on the same page, vs working in silos.

2. Improving Relationships with Customers

Your mind might not immediately go to AI-driven contract management when you wonder how you can build stronger relationships with the people you work with and for. But agreements set the perimeters of those relationships.

When it comes to re-negotiating contracts, AI can be used as a guide through reviews, redlines, and negotiations and can refer back on pre-negotiated contracts, precedents, and playbooks. The negotiated process is accelerated as negotiating parties no longer need to reinvent the wheel and can reference historical negotiations. This makes it easier for all parties involved as time and money are saved, and a positive customer experience is created.

The wrong contract language— think clauses that have the potential of non-compliance or legal action down the road —has the power to taint customer relations in no time. By automating the contract approval process, you can rest knowing that non-compliant language will be flagged and reminders of upcoming deadlines will be provided. You can increase your visibility into the entire contract process and improve transparency, in turn—a key ingredient in just about any business relationship.

3. Increasing the Bottom Line

With pre-approved templates that adhere to company policies, automated contract review tools allow your legal team to spend more time on higher-value, strategic tasks – those that help build the business and keep your company on the growth track. They prevent your team from making contracting mistakes that can ultimately be costly, and they help your team to extract and transform key terms and obligations into smart analytics, which can be filtered and queried, making it easier to review key legal data and unlocking hidden contract insights. With that data at your fingertips, you can create even greater and longer-lasting efficiencies—what your company needs to compete and thrive in today’s legal world.

So, just how the wheel helped us to get to places faster and the industrial revolution enabled companies to grow, AI and automation are accelerating and enhancing the routine legal procedures of legal teams. By marrying this technology with your contract management processes, you can achieve greater results with fewer resources, and attain your departmental and organisational objectives more swiftly than ever before.

To learn more about legal AI assistant and contract lifecycle management (CLM) systems, click here.

Matt Gould
General Counsel at ContractPodAi

Matt Gould is the General Counsel at ContractPodAi and leads the legal teams. Matt truly understands the needs of clients and how the use of technology can help them achieve better outcomes. As a solicitor with more than 20 years of experience as a general counsel, he has led global in-house legal teams in the telecommunications and technology sectors. Previously, he was General Counsel for EMEA at Telstra and General Counsel at LycaMobile. Matt holds an LLB (Law and Politics) degree from Birmingham University and is a member of the Law Society of England and Wales.

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