As business relationships evolve, so to do the processes needed to manage them. One area that’s seen significant changes in processes is contract management, which is increasingly driven by technology and the need for companies to work together to achieve results.
Technology has already led to several changes within contract management – the reduction in paper contracts, for example – and more changes are set for 2018, including:
• Artificial Intelligence (AI): This year, AI will likely become common in contract management systems, allowing you to make better decisions by using algorithms and analytics to identify trends and make recommendations for changes to your contract management workflow.
• Automated systems: These allow your contract management system to take over the process, tracking milestones and key dates and identifying potential risks and flagging these, for example. This reduces the need for manual input, allowing staff to focus on contract delivery, and it potentially reduces costs.
• Contract signatories: With electronic contracts comes the potential for electronic signatures to be used in contract management, eliminating the need to print, sign and scan or fax contracts and reducing the delays associated with these requirements and allowing for a faster turnaround time, meaning work can begin more quickly than it might have otherwise.
Businesses must ensure they remain aware of changes within contract management, including the use of new technologies, if they are to remain competitive and responsive to today’s business environment. For government contractors this means ensuring you understand and comply with national standards. Companies such as https://www.contractswise.com/ can help organisations understand not only the benefits of a contract management system but also how find the right system for them.
2018 will also see changes to law and regulations which will have an impact on contract management and which companies need to understand and respond too. In the US, a key change will be compliance with the ASC606 standard issued by the Financial Accounting Standards Board, but other changes are likely to be seen internationally.
Agile contract management will be another CMS trend for 2018, allowing companies to remain flexible and respond to changing business environments. It can be used to break projects down into smaller tasks or enable collaboration across partners and will be key to how companies manage contract delivery in the future.