What is CLM, why should I use it, and what can it do for my business? Well before we dive in, think about the following questions. Are your finance and legal departments having trouble communicating? Are deals taking longer to close? Are contracts taking too long to draft up or finalize? If you are having some or all of these issues and more, it may be time to starting talking about CLM.
What is CLM, Anyways?
CLM stands for contract lifecycle management, and its name implies all that it entails. CLM helps companies standardize and streamline their contract management processes. Although there are multiple tools and platforms, here are three best practice tips that can set up your team for success with CLM:
Best Practice Tip #1
First, appoint a leader for the CLM project. This person is responsible for keeping the project on track and getting the right people involved to ensure the business goals are being met. Be sure the company reaches consensus on who should handle this role, so issues between departments don’t arise.
Best Practice Tip #2
Now review your current CLM process. How do you create contracts today? How do you collaborate with other departments? What is a manual process versus an automated one? These are just some of the questions you should be asking yourself as you look to improve or implement a CLM process. Plan ahead and create a process flow that systematically shows your current process, who executes those processes at each step, and any pain points being endured by end users. This will provide a lot of insight about where improvements and changes can be made.
Best Practice Tip #3
Pick a solution that can be integrated with as many of your currently used systems as possible. This will ensure your contracts and supporting documents can be organized into an easy-to-find system, and it may provide security that will allow users to access only the documents and elements of the contract process that they are supposed to. Picking the right platform or tools can lead to quick wins, such as a faster routing of contracts, tracking of deadlines and quickly identifying other aspects of the systems that can be changed to improve the overall process.
You Are On Your Way
These three quick best-practice tips can get you headed in the right direction when implementing CLM into your company. CLM can improve your current contract process by streamlining it to make it a more adaptable and easier to build upon. With the right plan and a solid foundation, your CLM implementation can become the solution you hoped and dreamed it could be.
Alex Trakowski is a Consultant at Navint. A Salesforce professional with 5+ years of CRM, CLM and CPQ experience.