“In many organizations, up to 25% of sales time is spent on contract-related issues,” states Tim Cummins on his blog Commitment Matters. Tim is president of the IACCM, a non-profit organization that’s become the global forum for innovation in trading relationships and practices.
This is astounding. As we emerge from a very deep recession (knock on wood as GDP came out positive this week), organizations around the world are struggling to do more with less and to close sales more quickly. How do you do this when 25% less time is spent selling or prospecting?
Noted document assembly expert, Seth Rowland, has written a beginner's guide to Document Assembly that does a good job of explaining how document assembly software works.
Document Assembly goes by many different names, depending on the related job function and industry. It can be called document automation, document generation, contract automation, policy configuration, loan documentation, document creation and many more. For simplicity, we'll stick with document assembly here.
Well known legal department consultant, Rees Morrison, reminds us of the four key challenges contract management poses for in-house lawyers:
- Standardizing and simplifying contract drafting.
- Setting policies regarding legal department review of contracts.
- Streamlining contract negotiation.
- Facilitating the company's adherence to its contractual obligations.
Morrison notes the role of document assembly in addressing the drafting issue. Interestingly however, all four issues can actually benefit from a document assembly solution.
It’s one thing for us to say that we can help you improve your business. It’s entirely different for you to hear it from someone who has already succeeded in making their own business more profitable.
Les Doel, a manager at London-based Lloyd’s broker, Croton Stokes Wilson Ltd., recently spoke with KM World Magazine about his experience with document automation.
Do you work in a large company or law firm? If so, be sure to download the webinar recording on how Dow Jones and DLA Piper have benefited (in quite different ways) by automating the sales contracting process.
Our Chief Technology Officer (CTO) Justin Lipton has begun blogging over at CIO.com. From time to time we’ll share Justin’s posts in this blog as well. Here’s his most recent:
A mistake in a Word document has caused considerable damage and embarrassment to a publicly listed company in New Zealand. I recently read this post about an unfortunate comment that was left in a company’s annual financial statement. It reminded me how careful we need to be when using generic tools such as Word to produce documents.
As technology and the economy have created more and more pressure to close deals faster with less cost, innovative sales executives are looking for ways to accelerate their sales cycle without increasing headcount and costs.
Although document assembly has its origins in the world of law firms and legal contracts, it has more recently been pressed into service as a document automation platform in the document-intensive insurance world. After all, an insurance or reinsurance policy is indeed a contract.
If you are interested in document assembly and other legal technologies, which you probably are since you are reading this, here are some other blogs you may want to check out.
At ILTA '09 yesterday, Ron Friedmann 'live blogged' (no, I didn't just invent that term) a panel discussion on Technologies That Will Disrupt Traditional Legal Practice, lead by Richard Susskind. By all accounts, the session was very well received. Below is my take on some of Susskind's key points. (If you're interested in the future of legal practice I urge you to read Ron's full post.)