How do you currently store your contracts? Do you use DropBox, Google Drive or your local shared drive? Or have you taken steps to implement a contract management solution? If your current methodology works for you, that’s great, but every General Counsel, can appreciate improved efficiency in your work and increased accuracy in your decisions. Tracking your customer agreements in more detail is one way to do this. To help you achieve these goals, we compiled our top 5 benefits of tracking your contracts:
1. Provide Better Legal Advice – By using contract management and tracking, contracts are never filed and forgotten. This enables you to provide key advice to your sales and account management teams on previous negotiations. Departments can then take advantage of this insight and run their team more efficiently while leveraging your skills and expertise to the fullest.
2. Ensure Compliance – Contract tracking enables you to review contracts with any new regulatory compliance in mind as well as identifying any contract breaches. When a business can successfully notify clients of expiration dates and alert them of auto-renewal dates, you’ll never miss out on repeat business. Every deal has different specs, and one person cannot possibly know all the dates and numbers from every contract on-demand. Tracking contracts lets you easily search for dates and understand which renewals are automatic.
3. Improve Financial Performance – Manage your entire portfolio of contracts instead of each individual contract. Working this way allows you to look at your business and gain insights at a high level. Using technology to track this information gives you the benefit of having each and every detail at your fingertips. This enables you to prioritize the revenue function of contracts and agreements, identifying cost increase provisions and other renewal details.
4. Minimize and Control Legal Risk – Security attacks happen every day and it’s up to you as the legal team to have a plan in place to be prepared for these incidents. Start by identifying potential breaches, performing routine reviews, and have an incident response plan already laid out. When you stay on top of new potential threats, you’re much less likely to be the victim of a cyber attack. With contract tracking you can monitor specific performance and service level items in customer agreements. Its also important to be able to quickly report on this information when it is requested from the CEO, CFO, or Board.
5. Add More Value to the Executive Team – A General Counsel that has a holistic view of the business can provide lots of value an insight on the company "contract portfolio". Sharing key financial information about customer and also key insights that can only be seen from the customer agreements. Tracking and reviewing all contracts throughout the negotiation process gives the team added insight that can be shared with the company. Now when the CEO asks your opinion, you can give him unique and well-informed advice.
As a In-House Counsel, using the right tools to gather this information so you can stay focused on high level tasks is critical. Make sure that you are able to use these insights to support the revenue function of the company, where you can provide the highest value to the organization. For more information on managing your contracts, visit us at linksquares.com.