Contracts form the heart of your business. They determine how your company will generate revenue, outlining the obligations of both you and your customers — and the consequences should either party fail to follow through.
Yet for all of the importance that contracts hold for a business, they're often poorly managed. What passes for “contract management” in many organizations is a collection of documents, stored in filing cabinets, on servers, or in employee email inboxes. There is little to no visibility into contracts outside of those who are immediately involved with them, and even they might be hard pressed to put their hands on vital information when they need it.
Clearly, this system is inefficient at best, and detrimental to the business at worst. Without staying abreast of contract terms, businesses miss opportunities and deadlines. Without a simple means of searching and compiling data, contract audits are time-consuming and expensive, with hours spent poring over documents searching for key information. Without a system for drafting contracts, the process could take weeks or months, creating productivity bottlenecks. In short, without a contract management solution, there’s a good chance that your contracts are disorganized, costing your company time and money.
To streamline and better organize contract management, a number of SaaS platforms have emerged in recent years. And unlike the basement filing cabinet, they also provide detailed reporting and analytics, notifications of key events in the contracting process (even after execution), and tools to automate contracting workflow. Contract management software saves time, increases productivity, reduces risk, and best of all, increases revenue.
But how do you choose which solution is right for you? We took a look at some of the emerging players in this increasingly crowded field, and compared their offerings to Exari’s.
Similar to Exari, SpringCM allows users to easily generate documents via templates and a standard document library, and gives users insights into the drafting and negotiation processes via version management and redline views. The cloud-based solution is highly focused on streamlining the contracting process to avoid the bottlenecks and slowdowns in the contracting process that can have a detrimental effect on the business — while keeping a thorough record of what’s been done, by whom, and when, to create a complete audit trail.
What SpringCM lacks, though, is the intelligence that Exari brings to the contracting process. While the tool can help you find contracts easily via an intuitive search function, it does not offer the deadline and milestone insights and notifications that can keep your business on track while better managing your contracts. SpringCM’s lack of artificial intelligence features also means that you won’t have the deep level of insight into your contracts that Exari provides. Evaluating your contracts for risk, for example, will still require many hours of manual analysis, something you can capture with a few keystrokes using Exari’s advanced platform.
While SpringCM may not offer any type of artificial intelligence for contract lifecycle management, Apttus is focused on using AI to provide insights into your contracts to reduce risk and get more value from your contracts. Using an interface known as “Max,” users can interact with the software via a conversational user interface, allowing them to easily create or update contracts. Using insights gathered from your company’s existing contracts and approval process history, the Max develops revenue cycle times, identifies revenue risks, and compares new contracts against your existing documents to identify potentially problematic scenarios and suggest alternatives.
Apttus is a cloud-based solution that runs in conjunction with platforms like Salesforce. However, Salesforce is not ideal for contract management, as it not only requires the purchase of additional licenses, but your legal team is unlikely to be comfortable working within the platform. A solution like Apttus is useful for storing contracts, but it doesn’t provide the robust contract lifecycle management functions that Exari offers. For example, it doesn’t have the same level of negotiation and drafting tools, or offer the contract development wizards and interviews that allow for more self-service contracting to reduces bottlenecks and streamline the contracting process. Our sophisticated AI-engine automatically turns legal words into actionable and reportable, allowing users to gain deeper insights into their entire contract portfolio and the risks associated with each term.
Like Apttus, Contract Logix is focused on providing insights into your contracts that help you manage them more proactively and effectively. However, most of those insights are focused on meeting obligations on time, and keeping you abreast of upcoming expirations and renewals. Contract Logix lacks the advanced AI capabilities that allow for deeper insights into your contracts to reduce risk that Exari Contracts offers, though. Unlike Exari, Contract Logix doesn’t provide the customized reports with an algorithm-based risk score, nor does it analyze overall trends and contract performance to ensure that your business can make informed and strategic decisions. With template and clause libraries, automatic routing of contracts, and redlining functions to streamline the contracting process and reduce bottlenecks, Exari helps speed up the contracting process, while also offering a contract repository to easily store and organize your contracts.
Exari Contracts™ takes all of the most useful features of a contract management system and puts them into one easy-to-use package. All of your contracts are stored in a single place, allowing you to easily and effectively manage your entire portfolio. Your teams can quickly develop contracts using a template-based drafting wizard that draws upon a clause library; during negotiations, Exari’s intuitive, AI-driven comparison tools allow full visibility into the changes being made while also retaining a complete audit trail of all versions.
Fully approved language and automated request features speed up the contracting process. Exari also offers unparalleled insights into your contracts by turning documents into data via the proprietary Universal Contract Model. This allows for enterprise-wide reporting and analytics that measure contract performance and inherent risk, while letting your teams stay ahead of key milestones and deadlines. All of this is offered via personalized dashboards that provide detailed and important information at a glance.
While each of these products offers a solid contract management solution, none compare to Exari in terms of features, the ability to fully manage the entire contracting process from start to finish and to be utilized by every department. To learn more about Exari and its contract management software, give us a call or request a demo today.