Contract management is one of those terms that will mean different things to different people depending upon their roles and responsibilities.
We regularly come across organisations who say they are managing their contracts but when questioned further, their contract ‘management’ actually means that they are keeping a record of their contracts and possibly have a process to remind them when the contracts are up for renewal. We would describe this as contract administration which is a term that is not meant to diminish its importance but for organisations who stop at contract administration there is plenty more that can be done.
It’s great that there is this level of control because there are many, many organisations out there that don’t even have that but is it contract management?
We would suggest that to be truly managing a contract there needs to be management of contract performance, an understanding of any associated risks and processes in place to improve performance and mitigate those risks. Underpinning this there needs to be efficient and effective processes for contract administration.
For any organisation wanting to improve quality and compliance, minimise costs and avoid unplanned costs in its contracts then it needs to embrace effective contract management.
ContractsWise Limited provides affordable and easy to use contract administration and contract management software for any size of organisation and if operated correctly will bring a very rapid and huge return on that small investment.
Our flagship product is called ECMS and stands for Effective Contract Management Software. ECMS provides a highly secure (we are ISO27001 – Data Security Certified) cloud based central location for contract data and documents which can be allocated into contract groups and only be visible or amended by people with the allocated permissions to do so. ECMS will send out reminders ahead of any key events and reminders can even be automatically emailed to people who are not subscribed users of the system.
As it is very unlikely that any organisation would have the resources or in fact the need to manage the performance and risks of all contracts, ECMS provides a tool to help you decide which are the most important contracts for your organisation and focus your attention on these. It is worth noting that some of your lower value contracts may have a significant part to play in the success of your organisation so basing importance solely on contract value can be misleading and potentially dangerous.
Once you have identified your most important contracts ECMS will help the management of contract performance and it does this in two ways. Firstly it provides the ability to track and monitor Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). Secondly and uniquely ECMS provides an automated process for engaging with stakeholders to find out how well a contract is performing for them and also identifying how a contract could be improved for better performance.
In terms of managing risk, ECMS enables a risk register to be held against each managed contract and for those risks to be allocated to someone to manage and mitigate.
Both performance and risk are tracked over time with graphs showing whether these metrics are improving or declining.
Reporting on contract performance and risk is very easy and impactful through the configurable and easy to read dashboard as shown here:
At ContractsWise we also recognised that many organisations need a simplified starting point which at a later date could be easily upgraded to the full functionality of contract performance management. We therefore launched ECAS which stands for Effective Contract Administration Software and offers the same contract administration elements found in ECMS as a standalone product. We understand that there is definitely a demand for a simple to use simple to use, quick and easy to set up and low cost contract administration system and we believe that ECAS is just that. ECAS also provides the same secure, searchable data and documents repository as ECMS with the same reminder functions and also the option to track and monitor KPIs.
To learn more and request on-line product demonstrations please visit us at https://contractswise.com