Digital contract management makes it easier to locate and access contract data
Digital contract management makes contract lifecycle management easier, as contracts are easy to retrieve and accessible to everyone who makes use of this important data.
This article focuses on the benefits of digital contract management relating to the retrieval and access of data. General information about digital contract management can be found in the article Digital contract management – what are the benefits?
Due to the global pandemic, increasing numbers of organizations have moved from working at the office to working from home, or a hybrid model of the two. As the work environment becomes ever more digital and independent of location, it is rational for contract management to move online, too. A cloud-based contract management system provides the best support for these changing work habits by increasing the availability of contract data. A contract management method that is not dependent on time or place is increasingly important for modern organizations.
Traditional contract management issues related to accessibility and retrievability
In traditional contract management, issues related to accessibility and retrievability mainly concern how data is stored and how difficult it is to access.
Contract data may be stored in several different places and in different formats: paper copies in cabinets or storerooms, and digital documents in personal email inboxes, at workstations, or on network drives.
Searching for data and managing user access rights in physical archives and on static hard drives can be frustrating and time-consuming. In addition, it is hard to get value from contracts when it is not easy to monitor all their properties, such as schedules and obligations.
Contract data that is decentralized across various locations and systems can, in the worst case, lead to breaches of contract. For example, a legal risk could occur from missing contract obligations and compliance requirements. Effective contract risk management means tracking every deadline and milestone to ensure that nothing is overlooked.
Contract data that is always accessible
With digital contract management, contracts are accessible to all relevant parties and are retrievable around the clock, every day of the year.
A cloud-based contract management system means that the physical location of the person retrieving the data has no bearing on the accessibility of the data. The contracts can be accessed conveniently and data securely from home, the office, on a business trip, or even on a mobile device.
Some data is confidential or secret, and not everyone in the organization should be granted access to every contract. An agile digital system allows for user access rights to be restricted, so it’s easy to specify which contract data should be visible to which users. A separate view of contract data can be determined for everyone in the organization, as well as other stakeholders.
Using an electronic contract management system increases transparency: the right people are automatically involved in the contract negotiation or approval process, and it is easier to share data about a contract. Employees whose work depends on this information are not left outside of the loop.
Data searches and contract risk management made easy
Saving contracts in a digital format does not automatically guarantee that the contract data is easy to find. Contracts saved in different file folders or the use of software that is not designed for contract data management do not offer user-friendly tools for data searching.
Easily retrievable data also promotes contract risk management because it makes it easier to monitor the implementation of a contract and any changes to it. Any action relating to a contract can also be verified later.
A digital contract management system can make it effortless to retrieve contract data. For example, the Cloudia contract management system’s user-friendly and efficient search function helps you to find the exact data you need from a group of contracts.
Another reason for the rapid retrievability of data is the system’s ready-to-use templates, which mean that sufficient and process-appropriate data is always included in the contracts. Data that affects the retrievability of the contract is not left out accidentally or inadvertently. This means that contracts are always retrievable based on e.g. person responsible, client, or type of contract.
Effective contract data content search
A contract management system enables searches of all contract material. In a good system, search results can also be filtered and further refined as necessary.
For example, Cloudia’s service allows you to search all contracts by contract content or metadata. In practice, you can search using different keywords and criteria to refine your search.
Contracts are also retrievable by contract dates, contract number, or the names of the parties.
Cloudia’s service also uses methods to improve search precision, such as wildcard characters. Wildcard characters allow you to find all hits of a certain word regardless of how it is conjugated. The search can also be set to target the content of downloaded documents and attachments.
The system helps you to quickly find what you’re looking for, as you will no longer have to open the entire contract to see whether the search corresponds to what you’re trying to find. Even information that is locked inside attached files and documents can be searched, using the advanced tools from Cloudia.
Not even a good contract is enough if you aren’t able to monitor the implementation of and compliance with contract terms throughout the entire contract period. Easy accessibility and retrievability of data are integral parts of contract monitoring. It is important that parties who are involved with a contract have unobstructed access to contract data that is up-to-date.
When the contract management system is digitised, the contract and all of its associated meta data and attachments are automatically archived so that its entire lifecycle, including all phases, remain visible in the system. This makes it easy to return to contract data in the future, as and when is necessary.
A digital contract management system saves time
A digital contract management system saves employees’ time so that they can focus on their core tasks. Contract data is always only a few clicks away and can be retrieved from the system without leaving your desk.
Users can monitor the implementation and progress of contracts by setting interim goals, for example. The system also reminds users of tasks that require attention, such as renewal or expiration dates. This means that users can stay up to date with all contracts without spending excess working time on laborious manual processes.
Many functions relating to contract management are largely automated thanks to a digital system. This saves the employee time when retrieving data, creating and managing contracts, as well as when the results are being assessed.
By choosing Cloudia to implement your contract management system, you are choosing a skilled and experienced partner to help you develop contract management solutions and improve your company’s business.
More information about digital contract management and how it can benefit your company is available in our Digital contract management guide.