4 Red flags to look for when CLM shopping

Shopping for a new CLM provider can be a lot like dating. See what red flags to look out for when searching for a new lifelong CLM partner.

Trying to find the one: it can be daunting, it’s a lot of pressure, and you have to embark on the roller coaster that is “playing the field,” unfortunately it’s necessary when you’re looking to make a lifelong commitment. What exactly should you look for? Well, everyone’s dream partner is different, but there’s one thing we can all agree on – green flags only please!  

So, what are some of the universal red flags to look out for when you’re back on the market and choosing your lifelong Contract Lifecycle Management (CLM) partner? Wait…what did you think we were talking about? 😏 

There are many fish in the sea of CLM options, so what red flags should we avoid when navigating the vendor evaluation process?  

🚩They only talk about themselves 

We just met! At this phase of the process, your potential vendor should be all about you so the vendor can evaluate if they have what it takes to fulfill your needs. We’re still getting to know each other – woo us! But, there’s a fine line between wooing, and droning on about abilities or accomplishments without ever asking you what you need in a partner. 

At Agiloft, your initial meetings with our team dive deep into your current contract management workflow, and what your happily ever after might look like in an ideal scenario. Then, our skilled team works to build an inside look at Agiloft, using your CLM wish list, ensuring it’s a match made in heaven.  

 🚩They talk badly about past relationships 

When entering a new relationship, it’s important that the family and friends check out – how has their experience been with the party in question? Would they recommend it to others? While it’s always important, and standard, to speak to happy customers when evaluating a new SaaS provider, what about not so happy or past customers? What do those relationships look like now, how does the vendor describe the experience with that organization, etc.  

At Agiloft, we have a 97% customer retention rate and a 99% customer satisfaction rate. We’d be happy for you to talk with past customers – more than likely, they’re now also new customers who have gone on to implement Agiloft in a new role or venture.  

🚩They’re not interested in the relationships that are important to you 

Now, we know it’s important to vet a partner’s friends and family, but have they asked about yours? While you’re the one leading the new relationship venture, you’re not the only one this partnership will affect. Is your vendor asking the right questions by digging beyond some of your initial workflow needs and ensuring that the requirements of your family (i.e. sales, procurement, finance, and IT) are also being considered? What about your friends – the other systems that are already deeply entrenched in your workflow? How will your new CLM vendor get along with that group?  

At Agiloft, we know our product works best when all the stakeholders are involved from day one. While the biggest contract management pain might exist within a legal team, there are also important contracting needs cross-functionally with different pieces of contract data being important to various departments across your organization. How do we get that valuable data to the entire operational family? Any one of the thousands of integrations that Agiloft offers to various software providers throughout the industry – we have a lot of friends. 

 🚩They ask you to pay.  

This is a given right? It’s a first date! Yes, times are changing, maybe a split bill situation is becoming more customary as time goes on – but this is still a good rule of thumb for CLM selection. A software provider is offering a free trial and/or giving you the ability to purchase and download the software without ever speaking to anyone on their team, in theory, this sounds like a level of convenience that is unmatched. But, let’s read between the lines – this vendor is telling you that you’re being provided with an out-of-the box, cookie-cutter software that hasn’t been tailored to your organization and its needs at all. This might work for a while, or be a nice intro into CLM use, but if you’re looking for a lifelong partnership that can scale and adapt with your business for years to come? This route won’t cut it.  

Agiloft believes in getting to know you and your organization better because we know that at the center of any successful contract, is a negotiation between people. Throughout both the sales and implementation process, and beyond, you’ll gain a true partner – an organization that wants to help you agree and see you thrive for years to come.  

It may seem silly, comparing CLM evaluation to dating, but at the core of this analogy is the importance of this decision. CLM has the power to be a foundational and transformative technology that can sit at the core of your entire business operation. It’s not a decision that should be taken lightly, and it’s important that you invest in a partner that also wants to invest in you – someone who is interested in not only your needs, but also your wants, and can bring an expertise to the relationship that sets you up for success.  

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