- Michael Jones
According to Gartner, contract life cycle management (CLM) is the “process for managing the life cycle of contracts created and/or administered by or impacting the company. These include third-party contracts, such as outsourcing, procurement, sales, nondisclosure, intellectual property, leasing, facilities management and other licensing, and agreements containing contractual obligations now and in the future.”
CLM spans the entire process of generating contracts, the workflows of approving and negotiating changes to contracts, the signing (or executing) of the contracts, storing and archiving the executed contracts, plus tracking and audit trails to retrieve contracts and review their lifecycle of approvals, iterations, and signatures.
If contracts are critical to your business or organization—as most contractual obligations are—then a secure, reliable solution for managing the contract life cycle is imperative.
CLM technology solutions help manage the complex and evolving nature of contracts—making your organization more efficient at producing, executing, and upholding contractual agreements.
Key functionality to look for when assessing CLM solutions include visibility (a dashboard or overview of where individual contracts are in the life cycle), integration with communications and storage systems, automation (as few contracts start from scratch—most are iterations of previously created agreements), and of course change tracking to readily see how contracts changed during negotiations and what final version was executed by all parties.
According to a Villanova University article, CLM solutions can help organizations:
- Avoid litigation from contract non-compliance – A major issue in many contracts is compliance. If contractual obligations are incomplete, the potential for litigation can increase.
- Save money – Penalties for non-compliance, missed opportunities from special terms and rebates, and payment errors incurring fees and penalties can be avoided with good contract administration.
- Deliver greater value to customers – Fulfilling and exceeding customer expectations through proper contract performance enhances an organization’s value and leads to future business.
- Reduce costs and time involved in contract administration – Streamlining processes in contract administration has a direct affect on labor time and costs.
- Prevent contract managers from functioning as contract administrators – Contract managers, dealing with details and delays, are best doing just that, while contract administrators focus on higher-level management activities, such as developing important relationships with suppliers and customers.
Why ZorroSign for CLM?
ZorroSign is built entirely on a blockchain architecture that protects identities and data—uniquely authenticating users, encrypting communications, and securing digital data immutably through its lifetime . . . including contract data.
Specifically, ZorroSign’s platform was developed on private, permissioned Hyperledger Fabric. Hyperledger emerged as an open-source collaborative effort, hosted by the Linux Foundation, to advance cross-industry blockchain technologies and improve trust, transparency and accountability.
With this technology architecture, ZorroSign can manage contracts as it manages all digital documents, providing:
- Digital Signatures to quickly execute legally binding contracts
- Patented 4n6 (“forensics”) token to ensure contract immutability
- Workflow automation to quickly build templates and approval chains
- Document management system (DMS) leveraging Hyperledger Fabrics secure distributed ledger
- ZorroFill deploying machine learning to streamline form completion
ZorroSign’s platform can be accessed via PCs and mobile devices, allowing your legal department, operations and procurement teams, and sales teams to efficiently generate, negotiate, communicate, and sign agreements. And with our blockchain architecture, contracts reside on an immutable DMS where they can be saved, searched for, and managed easily from a single, intuitive user interface.
Unlike any other CLM solution, ZorroSign seals contracts with our 4n6 token—capturing the complete audit trail and the contract’s DNA. The token is encrypted and contains information on all the details about the transaction including timestamps, user authentication, documents and attachments.
Only the 4n6 token:
- Allows ZorroSign customers to manage permissions as to who gets to see what level of information about the transaction and the contract
- Stores the ZorroSign security encryption certificates, which—unlike other digital security certificates—never expire!
- Can verify, validate and authenticate both digital and printed (paper) version of electronically signed contracts
Our unique platform supports CLM to speed digital transformation—reducing paper costs and logistics, supporting environmental conservation, and improving operational efficiencies for in-office and remote teams.
Plus ZorroSign delivers the automation capability necessary to proactively and methodically manage contracts from creation and negotiation, through execution, compliance and renewal. To learn more about CLM and how ZorroSign can support your organization in managing contracts, contact us today!