How Version Control plus Redlining Provides Advantages to the Contract Management Lifecycle
What percentage of your contracts are in negotiation at this moment? Depending on the size of your company you may have a lot more than one. While in negotiations contracts may go through several revisions.
As revisions pile up oversites and miss-approvals easily happen. Missing a change or overlooking a clause could prove costly because unnecessary work could be generated, funds could be misappropriated, or a cause for legal action created. By doing due diligence and using a contract management software with version control plus redlining you can help to avoid errors, increase productivity, and ensure the desired outcome of your contracts.
Version Control plus Redlining safeguards against mistakes by eliminating the chaos created by a mass of paper contract versions. Versions and changes are more controlled and easier to identify because they are found in one location. A contract management software may use a “check-out” process. This feature helps contract users avoid the confusion of multiple changes being made at the same time, as well as verify who is currently making changes to or reviewing the contract. While checked-out, redlining can occur automatically opening in MS Word. This begins to track/redline any changes that are made to the contract. Once the desired changes have been made the user saves the document and should “check-in” to accept the changes. Version control then identifies the most recent edition with a time stamp that shows the date and time of the most recent changes to the document. Deletions and additions are made obvious by redlining while unimpeded access to previous versions removes the difficulty of reviewing multiple paper versions.
By removing confusion and delay, version control plus redlining increases productivity due to the ability to stay within the current software with all changes in one place. Users have access to all versions of a contract with a few key strokes. The days of searching for the correct version of a paper contract or waiting hours for a new version to arrive for approval are over. “How to Create a Productive, Collaborative “Office” for Your Always-Connected Staff,”an article by Anthony Foy in Fast Company, acknowledges that version control benefits productivity because, “… users’ time is not wasted trying to identify changes or having to worry about whether they’re working off the most up-to-date version.”
Productivity is taken a step further with the added benefit of external users having access to the designated contract. Allowing external users access to electronically stored and edited contracts creates smooth collaboration and prevents delays between parties because everyone has access to the same versions of a contract.
Whether there are a mass of contracts for review or one contract at a time version control plus redlining offers the advantages of easy access and better time management to the contract management life cycle. These advantages allow quicker approvals and yield fluid transitions with more desired outcomes from contract negotiations.
How are you managing your contract management lifecycle?
Fast Company Magazine, “How to Create a Productive, Collaborative “Office” for Your Always-Connected Staff,” Anthony Foy
Articles of Interest:
- Inc., “How to Red-Line a Contract,” Darren Dahl
- Entrepreneur, “4 Reasons Small Businesses Should Migrate to the Cloud,” Andre Lavoie
- Wikipedia, Document Comparison
- Forbes, “Computerworld’s 2015 Forecast Predicts Security, Cloud Computing & Analytics will Lead IT Spending,” Louis Columbus
- Inc., “How the Cloud will Transform Business by 2020,” Graham Winfrey