Is your contract management software “expiring” or “expired”?

Katie Cook


by Katie Cook

business-handshake.jpgNew wave of Contract Lifecycle Management (CLM) software making the experience faster, easier and smarter!

Imagine this - you’re about to embark upon a huge business negotiation and your counterparty tells you “we’ll send you a login to our negotiation software and a first draft of our agreement so you can review and negotiate”.  We, at ContractRoom, hope you have this privilege as your whole experience of contracting may be about to change. This is particularly so if you’re introduced to a system which leverages what we call Predictive Agreement TM (via machine learning).

 There are many words to describe systems that are built for the contract management process but not all of these systems are equal.  Some of the terms to describe these products include:

    • Contract Management Software
    • Contract Management System
    • Online Contract Management
    • Contract Lifecycle Management Software
    • Enterprise Contract Management
    • Contract Compliance Software
    • Contract Manager Software
    • Negotiation Process Software (NEW) - ContractRoom can claim all the above including this one, unlike any other provider.

These systems are becoming so pervasive that in some circles CLM (for Contract Lifecycle Management) or CMS (Contract Management System) are the abbreviations being used for this type of software (not to be confused with CMS for content management system).

So what should you expect from this type of technology?

7 things to consider in a modern contract management system include:

  1. Conditional drafting - intelligent document assembly
  2. Collaborative editing - real-time contract review both internally and externally
  3. Approval routing - automated routing to approvers based on pre-set rules
  4. Multiple execution methods - being able to sign on paper or digitally on the fly
  5. Auditability and traceability - creating a full history of all changes and comments
  6. Security and dissemination - controlling communication via secure environment
  7. Machine learning capacity - removing all guesswork with real-time term feedback

Download "Building a Transformative Contract Management Practice

Below are the expired, tired and wired forms of contract software.


Using solely a text editor like Microsoft Word or notepad to draft a document, and then relying on the track changes function or email circulation is definitely an expired methodology.  Using these types of workflows for contract management make it difficult to maintain version control as multiple copies are emailed back and forth, some with changes, some without. Relying on email raises security issues.

Often this method requires a separate Excel spreadsheet or tracker to see who has made edits on what points and which ones are outstanding.  Auditability can only be found through a source of truth document, but not on the actual contract itself.  Almost all the work has to be done manually and the chance of error is also frighteningly high.  

Note: this method provides NO Predictive AgreementTM capability.


A tired method of managing contracts is through a common website or shared folder, where a variety of pre-made templates are kept and re-used.  e-Signature may or may not be available, and there is some level of traceability through site audit logs and security by tracking user access to the site.  While this method makes version control, traceability and dissemination easier to manage, it still leaves major gaps in all of these areas.  For example it doesn’t provide any assistance in guiding the negotiation processes, through tools such as automated workflows, and it also does not capture data that can be leveraged in the future use for Predictive AgreementTM.

Wired - the new wave of contract management systems

A wired or modern system provides top quality in all areas of consideration and should be the new wave of contract management systems!  

A modern SaaS or hosted solution is a complete lifecycle (end-to-end) solution package which provides not only a single source of truth for both negotiation teams, but allows for complete traceability of any changes made to the document.  Beyond simplifying multi-party collaboration, wired solutions also attack the biggest pain point in the business world today: the negotiation.  Wired solutions use machine-learning to optimize the overall process and decision-making (what is known as predictive analytics). No longer do negotiators have to operate in a vacuum; instead they’ll tap into the ‘collective intelligence’ of their peers, leading to better business outcomes.

In addition, wired solutions offer dynamic agreement building functions and automatically convert commitments into tasks. They are also the most secure as there is little to no chance of a copy of a sensitive agreement or terms being accidentally disseminated or shared with someone who is not meant to be part of the negotiation process (with multi-factor authentication protocols for access and execution).  This helps keep your sensitive data and agreements intact, while also allowing a negotiation team to seamlessly, quickly, and efficiently collaborate on and produce an agreement from anywhere with an internet connection.

In considering version control, dissemination, security, and Predictive AgreementTM capabilities, expired and tired contracting solutions should be replaced by those that are fully wired -- creating a significant divide between the companies saving time, money and resources  versus those lumbering along doing business the old, tired way.  

ContractRoom,, is Wired for the new wave of contract management and is the home of #PredictiveAgreement – you too can “negotiate less, agree more” in your contracting process.  Schedule a free demo here: Let's Talk

ContractRoom is making the world more agreeable one happy contract at a time.


About the author

Katie Cook

Katie Cook

Katie Cook is Director of Marketing, Communications and Legal Standards at ContractRoom. Originally from the east coast of Australia, she has a background as an Attorney having practiced in both public and private practice in Brisbane and Melbourne. Katie completed studies in journalism and is now combining her legal and writing skill sets in her role.

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