In any industry and for companies of any size, the key to a successful Business-to-Business (B2B) relationship is the efficient management of all relating information. This information includes not only supplier and payment data, but also the history of the relationship, the expectations of both parties, and the interaction’s critical legal and business requirements. The most efficient way to handle B2B information is with a standardized contract management process.

Contract management is essential for an organization to properly and efficiently conduct long-term business with its suppliers, partners, and employees, as well as to ensure compliance with legal and corporate mandates. However, as today’s government and tax regulations and global supply chains become increasingly complex, organizations must handle these contracts with more precision. Successful contract management is especially difficult when contracts are handled with manual, paper-based processes; many organizations struggle to record accurate contract information, maintain contract deadlines, and properly identify contracts that are out of date or no longer profitable. This leads to high processing costs, compliance and security risks, and delays and weaknesses in supply chain operations.

To handle these struggles, many organizations have reorganized their internal structures to support a centralized contract management team. While this structure enables an organization to manage its data in a more streamlined manner, centralization alone does not bring full efficiency to the process. A vital factor in truly secure and efficient contract management is the addition of a robust contract lifecycle management (CLM) solution.

Contract management software electronically manages contract lifecycles from creation to execution to post-contract analysis. This software includes tools for internal authoring and collaboration, external negotiation, legal review, and contract tracking. CLM reduces processing costs, speeds up negotiation times, ensures fluidity in the supply chain, and increases visibility into the statuses and profitability of active contracts.

PayStream Advisors’ 2016 Contract Lifecycle Management report highlights the ways in which CLM solutions ensure business success by controlling a contract throughout its entire lifecycle. This publication will also explore the current trends in contract management processes among organizations and explain the features of leading CLM solutions.

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