Why Robust Contract Lifecycle Management matters

Researching the why and how of contract management is critical in choosing the right vendor. Here's how to simplify that process.

Contracts are the backbone of every business relationship – and managing them effectively can mean the difference between growth and stagnation. A robust contract lifecycle management (CLM) solution can revolutionize the way your organization handles contracts, from creation and negotiation, to approval and renewal, to storage, reporting, and actionable analysis. While there is a multitude of vendors out there offering varying features, making choosing the right CLM solution a daunting task, this article will help you simplify it.

How should you choose CLM software for your business?

To choose the right contract lifecycle management (CLM) business for your business, select the right combination of workflow management (for process automation) and historical contract management (for reporting, analytics, and access). The right CLM will accelerate internal processes, allowing you to close deals quicker, without assuming additional risk; and surface your store of contracts to reduce the change of accidentally auto-renewing contracts or missing obligations owed to your business partners.

Do I need CLM software for my business?

You need CLM for your business if the answer to any of these questions is yes:

  • Do you waste hours every week manually looking for contracts?
  • Do you worry that you aren’t able to find risk and mitigate it?
  • Are you finding it difficult to ensure alignment on contracting processes?
  • Do you feel powerless in your role, juggling time-consuming, tedious, manual tasks from multiple executives with competing urgency?

There are few, if any, organizations that do not face these challenges, and, therefore, are few that do not need to consider CLM to transform how to manage contracts.

How can CLM software solve my contract lifecycle problems?

CLM can streamline contract processes, increase efficiency, and reduce risks. It automates tasks, ensures compliance, and provides real-time insights, enabling better decision-making and positioning your business for success.

Here are some problems the right CLM software can help solve:

1. Efficiency and productivity

Generating a contract using a template accelerates the process compared to starting from scratch. CLM automates tasks such as contract creation, approval workflows, and renewals, allowing your team to work more efficiently and focus on strategic initiatives.

2. Cost savings

CLM helps optimize pricing, reduces errors, and ensures compliance, ultimately saving your business valuable resources.

3. Risk mitigation

Keeping up with obligations and ensuring compliance with legal and regulatory requirements reduces the risk of penalties, disputes, and non-compliance.

4. Visibility and control

CLM provides a single source of truth, ensuring real-time visibility into contract status, obligations, and performance – empowering you to make better strategic decisions.

5. Streamlined collaboration

You can facilitate collaboration among teams by providing a centralized platform for contract-related communication, edits, and approvals.

6. Scalability

CLM solutions can scale to accommodate your needs, ensuring your contract management remains efficient and effective.

Now that you know the importance of a CLM solution for your business, it’s time to research the right partner to ensure your contract management success.

How do I define my contract management requirements?

The foundation of selecting the right CLM solution rests on a deep understanding of your organization’s unique requirements. This phase is not just a preliminary step; it’s the compass guiding you toward a solution tailored to your needs.

Here are some steps you can take to ensure you choose the right CLM partner:

1. Assess current contract management challenges

Begin by taking a closer look at your existing contract management processes. Are there pain points like lost deals, inefficiencies caused by redundant process loops, or bottlenecks that slow you down by defining one person as the gatekeeper for too many decisions.

2. Identify specific goals and objectives

Once you’ve assessed your challenges, shift your focus to the future. What are your aspirations for contract management? Define specific goals and objectives, like:

  • Cut the time to onboard a contract by 20%
  • Reduce the time to finalize a negotiated deal by 3 days
  • Execute 15% more contracts per month within the next two fiscal quarters

With a clear definition of success, you create a clear vision of the outcomes you expect from a CLM solution.

3. Define the scope of your CLM requirements

With challenges and measurable goals in mind, it’s time to outline the scope of your CLM requirements. What features are essential to address your challenges and meet your objectives? Balance your aspirations with practicality, ensuring that the CLM solution encompasses the functionality needed to drive positive change without unnecessary complexity.

How do I determine the best CLM software for my business?

Many solution providers claim their product can be tailored to your needs, but the onus is on you to ensure the offering is flexible enough to truly fit your business requirements and budget. Opting for the wrong choice might lead to a project that falls short, exceeds budget, or fails altogether. Opting for the right one, however, not only meets objectives within budget and timeline but also establishes an adaptable infrastructure for future projects.

Here are some must-have contract lifecycle management system features and capabilities:

1. Ease of use

A user-friendly interface ensures that you and your team can navigate the CLM system effortlessly, reducing the learning curve and increasing adoption rates. This translates to quicker implementation and quicker results.

2. No-Code Customization

Without requiring coding skills, a no-code environment ensures you can customize your solution to fit your organization’s unique workflows and processes. This flexibility ensures the solution aligns perfectly with your needs without the complexities of traditional coding.

3. Configuration and flexibility

A rigid CLM solution might require you to adapt your processes to fit the tool. Configuration eliminates this need, ensuring minimal disruption to existing workflows and operations while also leaving room to change according to your business needs.

4. Security

Contracts contain sensitive information that can harm relationships and businesses if it gets into the wrong hands. Find software that uses encryption and sophisticated protection to keep contracts safe behind multi-layered security protocols.

5. Integration capabilities

Take a look at the vendor’s integration capabilities. Sophisticated CLM solutions enable seamless connectivity with other essential tools and systems within an organization, enhancing data accuracy, streamlining processes, and promoting collaboration.

6. Vendor reputation and support

The success of the CLM solution depends on how well it’s implemented. Find a vendor with a proven track record of implementation success. A reputable vendor can guarantee strong customer support, smooth implementation, effective troubleshooting, and continuous improvement.


In the quest to find the perfect Contract Lifecycle Management (CLM) solution, remember that your decision can greatly impact how well your organization handles contracts. By understanding what you need, researching different options, and considering factors like customization, integration, and vendor reputation, you’re setting yourself up for success.

Recent Posts