Contract managers ensure that all the company's contracts and associated documents are kept in good order and that contract content is available so that the business can benefit from it.
An uncomplicated statement that can be taken for granted. At the same time, the words "good order" and "available" hide a lot of complexity. An example when using contract binders shows some of the problems. With contract binders, good order follows partly from the fact that contracts are actually inserted in the folder, and that they are classified according to a register. The HR department may sort employment contracts based on last name, while the CFO sorts the supplier contracts by organization number. Notes and reminders are attached to the respective agreement. This can be seen as "marking" or keeping track of information you deem relevant, ie extra important, for some reason. This is a good order based on the type of agreement. Unfortunately, it looks different in different parts of a company.
Accessibility means that the business can easily and without delay obtain relevant contract information, at the same time as unauthorized persons are denied access. From, for example, the supplier agreement at the CFO's office.
An investment in good order for the whole company pays off in better accessibility. This applies to both the contract binder and the digital contract solutions. Here we describe how Artificial Intelligence (AI) can help you maintain good order and improve accessibility.
First, an example from reality that puts order and accessibility in a context.
A nationwide chain of franchise stores, as well as a group mother who has a shareholding in the stores. Each store purchases security services for cash handling and store monitoring. This type of contract often runs annually with automatic renewal unless the contract is terminated, for example 3 months before renewal.
Good order in this context requires that 3 dates be identified and recorded.
How do you find relevant information in contracts?
Let's take it from the beginning with the goal of simultaneously clarifying the benefits of AI-assisted text interpretation.
A typical contract contains many pages of text and there are no rules for where, in the document, the information you are looking for sits. Below are some examples of how information can be found:
The rapid development of AI-based text interpretation in recent years has led to a breakthrough in computer-assisted help to automatically identify and classify information in documents.
Today, technology can help you quickly identify and extract keywords in large masses of text. The text is analyzed with AI, which identifies dates, personal names, organization numbers, places, numbers, telephone numbers, etc.
"Marking out" relevant contract information is part of creating good order. Once you have identified information that you for some reason want to keep a special eye on, how is the "marking" itself done?
It should also be possible to monitor contract information that has been marked. Information in contracts and documents does no good before it has been communicated to a recipient who can act. This is part of improving accessibility.
It is common - at least in slightly larger companies - for different people or departments to be responsible for different parts of the business. The larger a company is, the higher the specialization. An extension of a supplier contract may have to be carried out by a purchasing manager, while an extension of an internship contract is handled by a person in the human resources department or the immediate manager.
Information from contract monitoring may also need to be received and processed in IT systems.
AI-assisted text interpretation is a technology that is here to stay.
Already today, results are delivered with impressive accuracy. As it improves contract management so much, it is a well-invested time to start looking for solutions that work right now. There is also much to indicate that AI interpretation will be even better in the coming years.
Contract managers get a completely new tool in their toolbox that makes it easier to maintain good order and increase the availability of contract information. It will be easier to identify relevant contract information and set up contract monitors, which helps companies to meet the conditions contained in contracts and documents.