Transitioning to a new contract management system is a big step for your company. You’ve put a lot of time, effort, and research into choosing the right contract management software and ensuring that your team has everything they need. But what does that transition really look like? What should the transition to new contract management software look like? Consider some of these important elements as you create your plan.
Training for the New Contract Management System
To use your new contract management system effectively, every member of your team needs to understand the benefits and be on-board with the change. Also, they need to receive the right training. Your team needs to know how to access critical information, how the contract management system works, and what features it offers. Ideally, you want to share all of the features that your new software offers. Those features, after all, are only beneficial if people know how to use them.
When deciding how much training your employees will need, ask these key questions:
- What type of software or contract management solution are you currently using? How is it different from the new system?
- How tech-savvy are your team members? Team members who aren’t familiar with the newest technology may need more training than those who typically stay on the cutting edge of technology.
- What features does each team member need to be able to use? Team members who need only access to the database, for example, may just need a simple overview of the system. But team members who need to utilize more robust aspects of the system, from reading contract scores to creating new contracts, need more training.
The Transition Away from Your Old Contract Management Software
During the transition process, you have two options.
- You can choose to migrate all of your existing contracts to your new database and contract management system. This will keep all of your contracts neatly stored in one place
- You can use your existing storage system for old contracts short-term. Keep dual systems until you get caught up and everyone understands how to use the system.
Ideally, you want to transition your old contracts to the new system as soon as possible. But you may have to choose between a fast switch and continuing business without any interruptions.
Here are some other things to expect during the transition period:
Set aside time and funds to help transition your contracts.
You will need to assign employees to take care of transitioning the existing contracts in your database. These employees may need additional time left in their days to handle those tasks. Alternatively, you might choose to hire temps to take on some of the workload.
Make sure you have new policies that take advantage of the new software.
Take a look at your existing contract management policies. During the transition, you may need to alter some of those policies to fit your new standards. For example, if you have contract management software that takes care of contract scoring for you, it may help streamline the approval process. If your contract management software will offer renewal notifications when you need to update or renew existing contracts, you may need to create a new policy for handling those renewals. Take a look at your existing solutions and processes and make alterations where needed.
Organize your existing contracts before making the transition.
A simple organization structure can make it much easier to handle the transition process. It gives you a straightforward, organized standard to work from.
Allow a little extra time during the transition process.
Your new contract management system won’t start magically improving your processes overnight. Instead, prepare for a learning curve as your team learns how to use the new software and how to utilize all of its features. During the transition, allow extra time for any processes dealing with your contract management software. This includes updating contracts and moving them through the new approval stages. Ultimately, you’ll discover that these efforts streamline the process and make it easier to manage your contracts. But it may take time to reach that point.
After the Transition
Implementing a new contract management system will be a challenging project for your business. The transitional period and extra work are some of the reasons why many businesses put off new software even when they know they need to make those important changes. After the transition is complete, however, you’ll discover that your new contract management software offers a number of key advantages. So look forward to:
- Lower risks for your business as a whole. Enterprise contract management software can identify potential challenges and problems for you.
- Decreasing the time and effort you need to spend on contract management tasks.
- Keeping all of your contracts in one easily accessible location.
- Crafting strong permission sets to help keep all of your data secure.
The transition to new contract management software may seem difficult on the surface. However, you will discover that effective contract management software that is designed to handle your business’s contracts is worth the investment. Even better, a great provider will offer the training and assistance you need to see the transition through to the end. Contact ContraxAware today to learn about our enterprise contract management software and training services.