The audience at a recent Exari webinar entitled, "Introduction to Document and Contract Automation," asked lots of great questions. We are sharing some of them with you here, along with the answers, because we realize that you may have the same questions yourself.
Q: Are changes by users to the documents audited? How is this represented?
A: There is an audit trail on all templates, so you know when the templates were changed and by whom. This is tracked via new versions of each template, and authorized users can go back to view previous versions. There is also an audit trail on transactional documents created and saved in the contract management system, with details of who saved each version and when.
Q: How do you handle negotiation with an external counterparty?
A: Typically our customers prefer to exchange Word documents when negotiating with external counterparties. Exari can output Word documents and versions of those documents can be stored in the central Contract Management repository. Exari also has a feature called Round Tripping where negotiated documents are compared to the document you last sent out, and a true redline of the document is presented to the user, making it clear which clauses were edited during negotiations. Round tripping works whether or not the user has turned on "track changes" in Word. This makes it easy to flag when specific high risk clauses were changed, and also makes it easy to synchronize the final set of contract data used for reporting.
Q: How does the repository portion of the application handle contracts that are not created through the wizard (i.e. 3rd party paper or legacy contracts)?
A: Other people's paper can be uploaded, with the metadeta, to the contract repository and shared in a central place. Many customers will also perform a human review using the Exari wizard to capture key data points from the contract. This approach streamlines the ""playbook"" approach to negotiation, prompting the user on specific issues based on their answers, and presenting them with a list of useful clauses to negotiate into the document.
Q: Can answers to the interview questions be exported so they can be read by other systems?
A: Yes. You can integrate both the document assembly and contract management solutions with any other in-house systems you have, such as CRM, ERP, CMS, database, billing, business intelligence system, etc. You can integrate both upstream and downstream, enabling you to pull information into an interview or push answers out.
If you have other questions about document assembly or contract management, you can ask us here.