Behind any profitable, high-functioning legal department is an effective and efficient legal operations team. From strategic planning to financial management, analytics, project management, and client services, the legal ops team oversees a wide range of critical functions. There is a need to instill more efficiency in the system to empower attorneys to focus on crucial legal work beyond mundane administrative and operational issues.
To keep daily operations running smoothly while preparing for emerging challenges, legal operations professionals require cutting-edge digital tools. A never-ending demand to do more with fewer resources—constantly increasing efficiency while lowering costs—is compelling many legal ops teams to accelerate their digital transformations.
Making the transition from legacy systems to digital technologies enables legal operations professionals to orchestrate fundamental changes to their processes. Contracts are vital assets that shape and govern virtually every business transaction and can be a powerful catalyst for a successful digital transformation. Digitizing contracts, creating a single-uniform contract repository, and automating key tasks pertinent to contract authoring, negotiation, and execution are the starting points of the digital transformation of legal operations.
In most organizations, contracts and the contracting process have a far-reaching impact, affecting risk management, compliance, procurement, sales, finance, and virtually every other essential function within the company. Contracts contain the data that defines how those functions must operate. This article covers how legal ops departments take on contract management tasks, the impediments they face, and, finally, how CLM technology can make the process more efficient.
The Challenge: Access to Contract Data
Although contracts are packed with valuable data, that data sits largely untapped in legacy systems that are built on outdated technology and are difficult to navigate and integrate with new-age systems. Siloed contracts present enterprises with some major hurdles in their efforts to take full advantage of contract data, including:
1. Lack of Visibility
Legal ops teams require deep visibility into their contract portfolio to discover and assess risk before it disrupts business. However, storing contracts in siloed systems limits access and visibility, making it difficult to address risk elements hidden deep within agreements.
Legacy systems hinder efficient contract authoring and negotiations with time-consuming, labor-intensive manual processes. These unwieldy manual processes—along with unstructured contract data that is difficult to analyze—jam up workflows, decrease productivity, increase error rates, and elevate costs.
3. Increased Risk
One of the principal functions of legal operations is risk management—a function that is severely impeded by the manual processes of legacy systems. The use of non-standard contract language and templates can lead to agreements that are not aligned with company positions or adaptive to new and emerging regulations.
4. Inadequate Analysis
Traditional contract analysis programs employ highly manual, spreadsheet-based processes that are not only time-consuming and expensive, but they are also susceptible to errors. Manual contract reviews do not offer deep visibility or accurate analytical insights, often leading to increased risk of exposure.
The Solution: A Digital Tool to Unlock the Immense Value of Contract Data
By digitizing contracts, enterprises can harness valuable data to gain analytics, insights, and the ability to optimize key performance indicators. In addition, digitizing contracts and contract management processes allows enterprises to mitigate prospective risks and achieve improved results throughout the operation. This process begins with the deployment of contract lifecycle management (CLM) technology.
CLM technology provides a robust platform for launching, propelling, and sustaining a digital transformation. By digitizing all phases of the contract lifecycle on a platform powered by artificial intelligence (AI), CLM software makes it possible for legal operations teams to realize a wide range of significant benefits, including:
CLM technology greatly enhances visibility into contracts, including obligations and compliance requirements. AI-driven auto extraction platforms rapidly transform unstructured contract data into meaningful information that is organized, stored, and easily retrieved in a central repository. This facilitates access to performance insights and risk analytics that help legal operations professionals progressively build stronger contracts, mitigate prospective risks, and achieve more favorable business outcomes.
2. Streamlined processes
AI-powered CLM technology enables exponential efficiency gains by automating and transforming contract authoring and negotiation functions. Digitizing and centralizing thousands of contracts into a searchable repository allows legal operations to optimize workflows, boost productivity, reduce error rates, and achieve a faster time-to-contract at a lower cost.
3. Risk reduction
By standardizing contract language and processes, CLM technology provides quality control over contracts enterprise-wide. AI-led risk discovery during the review process of new contracts and third-party papers flags risk elements such as missing clauses and clause deviations. It also prevents revenue loss by tracking contract end dates and flagging renewal dates.
CLM technology collects critical contract intelligence through AI-based auto extraction. Intelligence gleaned from contract analytics improves the ability of legal operations to monitor and assess risk, compliance, and potential opportunities. It also provides an edge during negotiations and enables legal ops teams to generate better contracts.
The SirionOne Digital Transformation Engine
SirionOne’s CLM software empowers legal ops teams to take control of their contract data. As a best-in-class CLM solution, SirionOne seamlessly integrates with enterprise processes and offers a rich suite of capabilities for legal operations.
The formidable AI engine of SirionOne provides advanced automation and intelligence delivered through an architecture designed for scale and security. On a single CLM platform, SirionOne transforms contracting by automating contract processes, accelerating time-to-contract, lowering risk, providing 360-degree visibility into obligations and compliance requirements, and strengthening negotiation capabilities. It unlocks deep contract intelligence—transforming unstructured contract data into meaningful, accessible, and actionable data to minimize risk, ensure compliance, and produce smarter contracts.
Find out how SirionOne’s AI-led platform can transform the way your legal operations team works and help your enterprise realize the full value of its contracts. Contact us with any questions, or to request a demo of our acclaimed software.