The Best and Worst Automations in Contract Management

Ken Button | November 12, 2018

Automated alerts and OCR-enabled searches make contract management a snap, but beware of "smart" contracts that can't handle the subtleties of contracting.

It seems like “best” and “worst” lists pop up everywhere these days – especially since anyone with a computer, a blog, and an opinion can add to the fun. A quick survey of the internet turns up an interesting variety of such “bests” and “worsts,” ranking everything from cars to starting baseball pitches to states for beer to fighter jets. If you can dream it up, you can find someone online who’s judged it mercilessly.

Even on a more serious note, best and worst lists can help us compare and contrast school systems, restaurants, neighborhoods, universities, and yes, contract management software - giving us the balanced knowledge we need to make the best choice.

In this article, we’ll consider some of the best and worst automations in contract management.

Best Automations in Contract Management

Use of Optical Character Recognition (OCR) Technology – In discussing contract management automation features, how could the use of OCR technology not come in first?

After all, OCR allows computers to “read,” which is the first step to other great automations. To a computer, a document initially looks more like a picture. OCR digitizes contracts by converting the picture into text that a machine can read.

This process is important for lots of reasons. First, all of a company’s contracts can now be scanned and stored in a single centralized repository. In other words, no more lost or misplaced contracts! Plus, you have just freed up a ton of space that you no longer need for storing contracts because they’re now stored securely on the cloud.

Next, the stored contracts can now be searched with great speed and agility. Instead of an administrator or manager pouring through paper contracts when they need information, they can conduct a Google-type search at top speed with the touch of a computer key. OCR technology is a must-have in the world of contract management software. Just imagine--you can search across contracts, or even within a scanned contract, and find all the termination mentions in seconds!

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Availability of Tracking Alerts – As a contract manager or administrator, how many things are you trying to keep up with? Large corporations can have 40,000 or more active contracts - and the average number of contracts continues to rise, no matter the size of a business.

These contracts may contain everything from important dates for making and receiving payments to automatic renewal clauses which cannot be canceled without action by a certain date. Sometimes, the opposite is true – an important lease or contract right can be lost unless it is expressly renewed by a specific date. And many contracts, such as construction and manufacturing contracts, contain numerous dates by which certain events must occur across the contract lifecycle. Missing a deadline can mean revenue loss, damage to client relations, or, at the very least, wasted time.

ContractSafe ends all of these worries with automatic tracking of dates. The system tracks all of your key dates and will send automated email reminders to whomever you like. A calendar with all upcoming dates can be reviewed with the punch of a button, and one-time and recurring reminders are both available. You won’t believe how much more efficient your administration efforts become.

Artificial Intelligence – Technology is improving at an ever-increasing rate. Such technology is essential to maximizing the benefits of a contract management system. But technological developments are important in another regard – they demonstrate the contract management software provider’s position as a cutting-edge company, intent on staying ahead of the technology curve.

ContractSafe proudly provides [AI]ssistant, which takes advantage of artificial intelligence for automatic data extraction, which can help companies of any size better manage their contracts. By extracting key information - such as contract name, signing parties, company name, end date, counterparty, effective date, and whether or not a contract auto-renews - administrators can set up contracts much more quickly, resulting in greater efficiency.

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Worst Automation in Contract Management Software

This one is easy – the concept of “smart contracts.” This is about as automated as a contract gets, right down to its very drafting.

A smart contract is essentially a computer-coded, self-executing agreement between parties, stored using blockchain technology. Theoretically, by cutting out intermediaries such as lawyers, judges, and courts, smart contracts minimize disputes while saving time and money, thereby improving efficiency.

The problems, however, are numerous. Smart contracts are created by programmers, not lawyers who are knowledgeable about the law. Additionally, smart contracts are not sophisticated enough to cover anything other than the simplest transaction. They’re simply not capable of dealing with the complications and complexities of the real business world.

Another worst automation falls under alerts. Some alerts only alert you in the system--imagine if your phone alarm only woke you up if you opened your phone first to see if any alarms were active? What’s the point? What you need is an alert to be sent directly to you, like ContractSafe does!

So allow us to present to you a new list, entitled “Best Contract Management Software that is Powerful, Affordable, Easy-to-Implement, Easy-to-Understand, and Easy-to-Use.” Number one on the list? You guessed it – ContractSafe! Start your free trial today!

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