Why We Decided to Develop A Contract Management Software
We understand that Zoho contracts are the core of all commercial and business relationships, and we at Zoho think that a lot of contracts are for various business aspects, and over the years, we have heard a lot of problems and challenges that our customer face in managing their contracts. Apart from these problems being a reason for CLM adoption, some recent factors are driving the adoption of contract management solutions. Increasing complexities in the global supply chain; the reason here is technology is evolving rapidly, and geopolitical tensions are causing complex supply chain environments. The pandemic has just aggravated the situation. To handle such a volatile environment, we need a flexible CLM model.
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Irrespective of the industry, you are operating in allegations of cropping up more often than ever. When government regulations are coming up, businesses are forced to make an organization-wide policy change, which translates as changes in clause languages. This situation demands a solution that helps them to do a quick impact study and implement all these changes quickly. And the third factor is that customers today have many options because the business landscape is very competitive, and many businesses are adopting flexible sales and pricing models. We need an agile system to accommodate that level of flexibility, and risk is an important factor. Risk is inevitable in any business, and with the recent pandemic, the emphasis on risk mitigation is at an all-time high. Almost all our businesses have started thinking about risk mitigation, and contract management is critical to solving this risk mitigation. The last factor is the recent trend of mergers and acquisitions within organizations and industries. That is when two companies come together and consolidate. They need a forensic analysis of all their existing contracts to know how their contracts perform from a compliance standpoint and a revenue standpoint. This is why we decided to develop contract management software, and we felt that this would be the right time to do so,
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Zoho contracts were not to put up yet another platform that improves legal operation efficiency. Still, we wanted it to be a platform that holistically addresses contract management and facilities better business outcomes. Any CLM solution should contain two main aspects supporting futuristic capabilities to achieve that. The second one is easy to access. Though the legacy software out there provides a lot of CLM solutions, if you look at the adoption rate, it is still very minimal. This is because the implementation challenges are huge; it demands a learning curve for us to implement them internally. We wanted Zoho contracts to remain simple yet feature-rich and, most importantly, easy to access. Our approach was to streamline the entire contract lifecycle by automating whatever could be automated. With an emphasis on risk, mitigation, and complaints at an all-time high, we wanted Zoho contracts to include features that help you mitigate business risks and improve governance. Also, with contracts rooting into various business departments, including finance, legal sales, and headshot, we wanted Zoho contracts to promote cross-functional integration. As a start, we have initiated Zoho contracts and Zoho CRM integration. These four aspects will be the main agenda for today’s productivity tool. We’ll see how Zoho contract functionally operates and accomplishes each of these aspects.
These are the stages involved in any typical contract lifecycle; managing the entire contract lifecycle without a CLM tends to use multiple applications. That is aiming to use of word processor to draft a contract document. They depend on a renewing application to send as an attachment for contract approval or negotiation. Then they rely on the third party in signature software to get the contract signed and executed, and now they maintain all these metadata in the spreadsheet.
Now when the volume of contract document increase, it equals document management software to store all their contract documents, and they take the help of a calendar to meet all the deadlines. I will quickly start the product tool.
We’ll get started with streamlining the entire contract lifecycle; I shall take an individual contract as an example and show how Zoho contact helps from its authoring to its execution. This contacts module in Zoho contracts is a central repository that holds all your contracts in a single place, bringing in better visibility. This advanced search and filter option allows you to access critical contact information whenever required. When initiating a contract lifecycle with contract creation, Zoho contract provides you with two options: either you can import your existing contracts, it can be in any state, be draft, signed and active, signed and not yet active, and even expired contracts. You can import your contract, draft a contract and sign a contract and manage the rest of the contract lifecycle within Zoho contracts, or start creating a contract right from scratch. You can select the required contract type and contact type in Zoho contract; it doesn’t just mean the contract template. It’s a fundamental configuration that defines all primary attributes of a contract, like a contract’s intent and approval workflow. All these primary attributes of a contract are associated with this contract type. We already have fourteen contract types present, and if you want to create any other contract type. You can create as many custom contract types as you want.
I’ve selected this contract type, which is a non-disclosure agreement. Click on continue, so you’ll be directed to a contract creation wizard, which is nothing but a new contract form. You can fill in the details based on the agreement you are about to enter. In the title, you can give a description, you can select your counterparty, contact me, the primary contact of your counterparty, and you can also set the contract term. You will have the effective date and the end date if it’s a definite contract. If it’s indefinite, you may not have any end date.
On being a definite contract, you can include the effective date when you would like the contract to become active; it can either be on a specific date or when you get the contract signed.
Zoho contacts will automatically generate a contract document based on the details you have entered and the contract templates you have already configured. This particular contract document will hold all the clauses available for this contract type in default, and if the content owner wants to remove any particular clause or add an alternative language for a particular clause. They can use this document editor panel, where the clauses tab will display all the clauses for this particular contract.
On selecting any particular clause, you can easily remove it from the contract document, and we can also switch between alternative language presented under each clause. This is an advanced document assembly feature enabled in the Zoho contract and the ability to add multiple alternative languages for a single clause. It avoids duplication of contract templates for minor tweaks, and now the contract here will be provided with a formatting option that a full-blown word processor provides.