It may sound cliché, but in today’s business environment, time is of the essence. Nothing ruins all the hard work your sales team has put in building new relationships and uncovering new revenue opportunities quite like the glacial processes for getting all the agreements in order and signed.
Organizations that still rely on manually-driven processes for creating, negotiating, and signing contracts are sabotaging their own success by lengthening (or at least keeping the same) contract lifecycles instead of shortening them. Research suggests that as many as 70% of deals fall apart late in the game because the process simply takes too long to complete. For those contracts not affected by timelines, over a quarter of them are still doomed because of overly complicated deal structures that feel like too much effort to be worthwhile.
The truth is that today’s customers don’t want to have to jump through hoops to get the products or services they want, and companies that can’t find ways of simplifying the contract lifecycle are ultimately going to lose out on business relationships and revenue opportunities. The common thread among these contract management challenges is the technologies (or lack thereof) most organizations use to manage their contract processes.
Frequently the process goes something like this:
- A contract is custom-written for every occasion and sent via email for review and approval.
- Edits from both parties are made in the document sent back and forth until everyone agrees to the terms.
- Each round of edits could require a new round of signatures, so documents have to be printed, signed, scanned, and sent back for review and approval.
Some companies have shortcut some of the process by using templated contracts and digital signatures to cut down on some of the more time- and resource-intensive aspects. Even then, there are still significant gaps remaining—like ensuring all revisions have been properly incorporated into the contract, that all the data has been updated in Salesforce, and that there’s a clear audit trail of the entire process to refer to in case of dispute.
No one really wants to or has the time to muddle through multiple steps and deal with a number of different systems to make that happen. Instead, sales teams and their prospects would both love a scenario in which the entirety of the contract lifecycle was seamless and automated.
New platforms for true End-to-end CLM
Organizations eager to streamline their contract management practices have a number of tools and technologies to choose from. There are numerous contract template tools and eSignature solutions on the market to make generating contracts and getting them signed easier.
The key, however, is to find solutions that integrate seamlessly and eliminate not only time-consuming manual efforts, but also the visibility gaps that can plague teams when they’re trying to use multiple systems that don’t play well together.
In particular, many teams find that in the scramble to get contracts completed, it’s increasingly difficult to enforce version control and create an auditable trail of signatures. It’s also a challenge to ensure all the data makes it back into Salesforce, adding to the “single source of truth” teams require to be more efficient and effective in their jobs.
Fortunately, the introduction of Conga Sign—Conga’s new eSignature solution—gives organizations of all shapes and sizes a complete end-to-end contract management solution they can use without ever having to leave their existing Salesforce environment. With Conga Composer, Conga Contracts, and Conga Sign, companies can rapidly create, negotiate, and sign even the most complex contracts in a familiar, closed-loop environment without additional plug-ins or having to navigate additional systems.
Today’s business environment demands efficient, simple, and painless contract management processes. For many organizations, investing in an end-to-end CLM platform is key to building trust and confidence with prospective customers and gaining a competitive advantage by offering faster, clearer, and lower-effort paths to starting a new business relationship.
Download “The end-to-end contract automation experience” ebook to learn how Conga Sign and other integrated solutions can simplify and accelerate your contract negotiation processes.