Fundamental Contract Management Tools For Businesses

Enterprise Contract Management Tools For 2024

Streamline and automate various aspects of the contracting process with the most advanced enterprise contract management tools to stay ahead of the curve.


Contract lifecycle management is complex. It calls for legal expertise, countless administrative tasks, and collaboration from across the board. Contractual agreements can also cost businesses time and money rather than creating new opportunities if they are not careful. They need improved and faster processes to churn out umpteen numbers of sales agreements, vendor contracts, NDAs, employment contracts, MSAs, and so on.  

Then it’s no wonder businesses of all sizes are transforming to digital contracts to keep up with the competitive market. Today, all kinds of enterprise contract management tools are available to expedite each step of the contracting process. Depending on their unique needs and industry, companies can pick and choose their cocktail for an efficient and accurate contract lifecycle. 

What are Common Bottlenecks in Contract Lifecycle Management? 

Relying on shared folders, paper documents, or spreadsheets to create and manage business agreements can be bothersome, especially when accuracy and timeliness are prudent. While every organization is unique, from drafting to signing to monitoring milestones, the challenges are the same across industries, locations, and contract types. 

  • Lack of accessibility  

One of the major challenges of managing countless business agreements, especially when using traditional methods, is the lack of accessibility. Executed contracts lay waiting across file cabinets, multiple platforms, or drives. More than often, there’s no structure or efficient system in place for their storage. Naturally, organizations have a hard time finding relevant information or documents during times of need.  

There is no easy way to get to the contracts for reviews, renewals, or terminations. Apart from the organizational productivity taking a hit, that is a lot of valuable time spent sifting through countless cabinets. And without a single platform storage, it’s difficult for the procurement, sales, and finance team to collaborate on contract lifecycle management. 

  • No tracking of deadlines, milestones, or obligations 

Given the magnitude of contractual agreements in daily business operations, there’s no room for errors or lapses in judgment. Whether it’s sales or vendor contracts, organizations must stay on top of it throughout the relationship to avoid legal, operational, or financial repercussions. But with the decentralized storage and manual tracking processes, legal teams are bound to miss out on some significant dates or conditions.  

For businesses, sifting through countless legal agreements to find and keep track of key clauses is a time-consuming hassle. Consequently, establishing compliance with obligations, regulations, and industrial standards becomes more demanding. As a result, prominent deadlines or milestones fall through the cracks. 

  • Contract Negotiation or Execution via Email 

All the parties involved in a contractual agreement agreeing to a set of terms and conditions can take a long time. And it is further delayed when organizations resort to emails or telephone calls to negotiate business contracts. With a lack of version history and real-time collaboration, ensuring all the stakeholders are on the same page regarding the legal agreement is next to impossible. As a result, the negotiation process takes longer and has a higher scope of error and inaccuracies. 

Similarly, when contract signing happens over emails or wet signatures, it's drawn out unnecessarily. It puts a damper on the user experience and makes it much harder to onboard customers or vendors. When you have multiple documents or stakeholders, the traditional signing methods are not fit for the job. 

  • Delayed Contract Turnaround Time 

Inefficiency in any phase of the contract lifecycle can lengthen the time-to-contract process. It takes time and effort to draft legal agreements from scratch each time. Moreover, unstandardized language or incompetent content can hinder the progression of the contract through the negotiation and approval process.  

Contract lifecycle management would be chaotic without a set system or workflow to carry out the process. And the organizations won’t be able to monitor the lifecycle to identify and mitigate issues at each phase. It can also take a long time to manually execute documents by having the recipient sign them, scan them, and email them. 

Contract Lifecycle Management Using Microsoft 365 - Free contract webinar

What are the top Enterprise Contract Management Tools?

Contract management software provides various features to streamline and automate the contract lifecycle. These contract lifecycle management tools help organizations get past the numerous roadblocks that traditional methods create. While the specificities may vary depending on the software provider, here are some of the most sought-after tools in 2024: 

Contract Repository Software 

When looking for contract lifecycle management solutions, storage may not be at the top of your list, but it is unquestionably necessary. Contract repository software helps organizations manage and organize their contracts in centralized cloud-based storage. This single source of truth allows users to sort and retrieve legal documents and related information with little effort and time during contract management. 

  • Contract repository software offers role-based user permission to establish accountability and restrict access to sensitive contracts.
  • Organizations can add metadata and tags to contracts, making it easier to categorize and search for specific contracts based on various attributes such as contract type, status, or renewal date.
  • The powerful search capabilities enable users to quickly locate specific contracts based on keywords, dates, parties involved, or other relevant criteria. 
  • Dock 365 takes security one step further by building the repository on the preexisting SharePoint and Office 365 environments. Thus, Microsoft users don’t need to depend on third-party sites to store contracts. 

Contract Drafting Software 

Authoring competent and beneficial documents in no time is critical for businesses to convince vendors and customers. That is why organizations prefer to have contract drafting software at hand rather than starting from nothing each time. The software helps to compile the contract content, insert relevant clauses, and details, and generate a complete contract document. Here are some key features contract drafting software has to offer: 

  • Template Library: It includes pre-built contract templates that cover a wide range of industries and contract types. These templates for NDAs, MSAs, etc. serve as a starting point and can be customized to meet specific requirements.
  • Clause Libraries: They provide a collection of commonly used clauses, reducing the time and effort required to draft contracts from scratch.
  • Import Data: Organizations can autofill party names, dates, or other specific details throughout the contract. It speeds up the creation of contracts and contributes to increased precision, consistency, and effectiveness.
  • Document Generation: Users can generate and merge contracts in various formats, such as Word documents or PDFs, with just a few clicks.

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Contract Redlining Software

When multiple parties have a stake in the business agreement, it’s hard to keep track of all their input and modifications. Contract redlining software tools help in the collaborative editing and reviewing of contractual agreements during the negotiation. It enables multiple parties to make changes, track revisions, and negotiate contract terms efficiently.  

  • Track Changes: Contract redlining software allows users to track and highlight changes made to a contract. It helps identify additions, deletions, or modifications during the negotiation. 
  • Real-time Collaboration: Multiple parties involved in the contract negotiation process can access the contract simultaneously and make edits or comments. Thus, ensure that all stakeholders are working on the latest version of the agreement. 
  • Suggestion Mode: Users can add comments or provide explanations for specific changes. It promotes clear communication and helps resolve any concerns regarding contract terms.  
  • Version Control: It provides a comprehensive history of the changes over time. Thus, users can compare and highlight the differences between contract versions.  

Contract Management Workflow 

Providing organizations with a respite from monitoring every activity within every stage of the contract lifecycle is automation. Contract management workflows automate the repetitive tasks involved in managing contractual agreements. It ensures the document gets to the right person at the right place without manual intervention. 

  • Self-serve contracts: Automated workflows enable procurement, sales, and financial teams to initiate the contract lifecycle without waiting around for legal.
  • Contract Review and Approval: Contract management workflows automate the review and approval process by routing documents to the relevant stakeholders for their input and consent. 
  • Collaboration and Version Control: Contract workflows facilitate collaboration among multiple parties involved in the contract lifecycle. They provide a detailed record of contract activities and changes for accountability.
  • Notifications: They provide automated reminders for critical contract events to help stakeholders stay informed and take necessary actions at the right time.  

Electronic Contract Signing

E-signature platforms enable electronic contract signing and eliminate the need for physical signatures. This contract management tool helps organizations execute business agreements remotely and accelerate the contract lifecycle.  

  • Legal Validity: Many countries and regions worldwide, including the United States (under the ESIGN Act and UETA), the European Union (under the eIDAS Regulation), and various other jurisdictions, recognize electronic signatures as legally valid.
  • Compliance: Electronic signature platforms provide detailed audit trails, recording the signing process for compliance and legal purposes.
  • Security: They have robust security measures to protect the integrity and confidentiality of the signed contracts. They often use encryption, secure storage, audit trails, and compliance with industry standards and regulations.
  • Document support: Electronic contract signing solutions typically support a variety of document formats, including PDF, Docs, Text, and Excel files, to accommodate different file types commonly used in contract management.  

Contract Tracking Software 

As contract volumes increase, organizations require advanced enterprise contract management tools to monitor contractual agreements throughout the lifecycle. Contract tracking software provides visibility into contract details, key dates, milestones, and obligations, allowing users to stay on top of contract-related tasks and deadlines.  

  • Key Date Tracking: Users can monitor crucial dates and milestones associated with contracts, such as contract start and end dates, renewal dates, or deliverables. Users can set up reminders and notifications to ensure timely action. 

  • Task Management: It enables organizations to assign and track contract-related tasks to individuals or teams. Thus, they can establish task prioritization, deadline tracking, and progress monitoring.
  • Monitoring KPIs: They provide insights into contract performance metrics, such as contract value, revenue, or savings achieved. It helps organizations evaluate the effectiveness of contracts and identify areas for improvement.  
  • Notifications: It sends automated alerts for contract-related events, such as approaching renewal dates, expiration dates, or milestones.  

Dock 365 offers all the enterprise contract management tools and more

Manual contracting procedures are inherently risky and make it hard to keep track of contracts and business relationships throughout their lifecycle. There’s no easy way to maintain version control or ensure compliance with industry and governmental standards. Additionally, drafting, negotiating, and approving a legal agreement takes a long time. Fortunately, enterprise contract management tools improve productivity and reduce manual effort throughout the contract lifecycle.  

Or make it a bit easier by adopting Dock 365 contract management software with all these benefits. Our centralized platform, built on the Microsoft 365 environment, has diverse features to simplify every contract lifecycle management task.  

  • Digital repository (SharePoint) 

  • Contract redlining (Microsoft Word) 

  • Electronic signature solution (Adobe Sign, DocuSign, and Sertfi) 

  • Mobile access (Teams) 

  • Collaboration (Microsoft Dynamics, Salesforce CRM, Business Central) 

  • Notifications (Outlook) 

  • Reporting (Customizable Dashboard) 

Schedule a live demo today to see all these enterprise contract management tools in action. 

Disclaimer: The information provided on this website is not intended to be legal advice; rather, all information, content, and resources accessible through this site are for purely educational purposes. This page's content might not be up to date with legal or other information.
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Written by Deepti Gopimohan

As a creative content writer, Deepti has spent years assisting brands to share their unique voice with audiences, complying with the latest marketing trends and strategies. Her educational background in Literature & Journalism has helped her research and publish content for diverse industries & mediums.
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Reviewed by Naveen K P

Naveen, a seasoned content reviewer with 9+ years in software technical writing, excels in evaluating content for accuracy and clarity. With expertise in SaaS, cybersecurity, AI, and cloud computing, he ensures adherence to brand standards while simplifying complex concepts.

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