Navigating Contract Migration A Guide for Businesses

Navigating Contract Migration: A Guide For Businesses

More and more organizations are looking to improve their agility and collaboration by moving their valuable content from legacy infrastructure to a cloud-based contract management platform. Keep reading to find out how to facilitate smooth contract migration.

Organizations are always searching for effortless and efficient ways to manage their business agreements. With the growing demands of modern times, enterprises must be on the front row to adopt the latest technology to improve processes and drive productivity. It empowers the legal department to identify and mitigate risks, uncover business opportunities, streamline workflows, and improve results. 

However, the issue of what to do with current contracts when implementing a new contract management system prevents most companies from jumping on the advancement bandwagon. The procedure could seem onerous when you have thousands of documents to migrate scattered over numerous servers, devices, and email inboxes. That is where the need for a successful contract migration strategy comes in. With a clear-cut plan, organizations can quickly move one or hundreds of contracts to an advanced contract lifecycle management system with little effort.  

What is contract migration? 

Contract legacy migration is the process of transferring existing contractual agreements into a contract management platform. Along with moving the legal document, the migration also entails relocating significant contract data like name, type, party, project, value, etc. Thus, contract migration enables businesses to accumulate all the contracts and related documents in a single location.  

Centralized storage means all the data is easily organizable, searchable, and retrievable. Thus, the legal team can effortlessly stay on top of the contract lifecycle to manage obligations, deadlines, and more. Refined accessibility provides organizations with a competitive edge over their contemporaries. Contract migration paves the way for accurate and comprehensive data accumulation, empowering businesses to protect their intellectual property.  

Contract Lifecycle Management on Office 365

Why is legacy contract migration essential? 

Business relationships do not benefit from relying solely on paper contracts, excel spreadsheets, and drives to manage contracts. Contractual agreements are a gold mine for actionable information. The legal team can discover contract intelligence by digitizing legal agreements and storing them in one centralized location. That is why organizations make moves to adopt contract lifecycle management systems. 

Contract migration is vital when transforming to an automated contract management platform. It creates a single source of truth to track contract data and obligations across the organization. Beyond just digitizing them, contract migration ensures that all the contracts and associated documents are retrievable, enabling users to extract highly accurate, end-to-end data. 

How to manage the migration of existing contracts into a CLM system? 

Contract migration involves mass importing data and documents into a contract management platform. The complexity of the migration process can vary according to the source, volume, and destination of the contract legacy. But merely transferring documents and data from one place to another does not make for a successful migration; an organization must take necessary steps to ensure all the migrated data is easily searchable and retrievable during a time of need. Improper migration can lead to higher overhead costs and decreased productivity and security. Here’s how companies can efficiently migrate their existing contracts into a contract lifecycle management system. 

 1. Accessing existing contract

The first step of the migration process is to take stock of all the pre-existing contracts and related documents. Whether you have physical copies stored in cabinets or PDFs in drives, organizations need to accumulate and organize all the files. Sorting out the legacy contracts before migration helps to ensure that there is no data loss or duplication during the transfer. Once the assessment is complete, organizations can decide which agreements are worth migrating to. Low-value contracts that are past their expiration date or that are too old may not be migratable.  

  2. Prepare contracts for migration

Once you have a stock of legacy contracts, the next step is digitizing data for the migration process. Organizations might have legal agreements in PDF or paper format, and contract management software comes with advanced OCR (Optical Character Recognition) capabilities to make the legal documents searchable and reportable. Paper contracts and image-based PDFs are scanned and converted into text-based PDFs using OCR as part of the digitization process. It works best with high-quality CLM software. 

  3. Extracting contract metadata 

The next step is for organizations to specify the fields or other elements they want to monitor for each contract. Once decided, businesses can use these fields to tag their existing contracts, making it simpler to search for and retrieve them in the future. The elements include contract type, renewal date, party name, contract status, etc. Organizations can extract this additional contract metadata and import them into the CMS (Contract Management Software) system during the migration.  

  4. Execute contract migration 

Moving legal documents from one contract management system to another is very straightforward. If not, structuring legacy contracts facilitates their migration to a new platform. Businesses can upload their existing legal documents in one go using mass import features on contract management platforms. As a result, it is simple and quick to import the metadata and documents into the contract management system. Content migration can take days to complete depending on the volume of data.   

OCR Contract Management Tools

What are the benefits of efficient contract migration? 

The primary motivation for contract migration is to enhance current workflows and systems. Organizations need quick access to legal documents to stay on top of obligations, deadlines, and other aspects of contract management after execution. Businesses can maximize the value of their contractual agreements by creating a single source of truth for contracts through the migration process.  

  • Keep track of contract data 

Contract intelligence is essential for enterprises to maintain healthy business relationships. It is challenging to gather and analyze contract data if contractual agreements are stored all over the place. That is why organizations must facilitate efficient contract migration to assimilate all the contracts and related documents in a centralized location. Thus, organizations can stay on top of the legal agreements as they progress through the contract lifecycle.   

Migration makes the information inside your contracts easy for the right people in the organization to discover and unlock. Stakeholders can quickly locate the information they need when they need it with the help of a centralized system with authorized access and search capabilities. Along with saving time and money, keeping track of data also makes contract workflows more effective. By migrating to a document management system, all the legacy contracts lay safely in the cloud, backed up regularly, providing added security. 

  • Build custom reports and dashboards 

After gathering all the contracts in one location, the organization can use the information to create custom reports. The process of gathering, examining, and disseminating crucial insights from contracts is known as contract reporting. Migrating all the legacy contracts to a single location facilitates comprehensive contract reporting and analysis. Thus, organizations can easily spot details about values or details like the contract’s value, duration, renewal date, and so on. 

Moreover, contract management software provides customizable dashboards to tailor and view the abundance of contract data. After contract migration, businesses can generate unique dashboards for clients, suppliers, and active legal agreements. Organizations can quickly derive actionable insights using filtered data. It provides greater visibility into the contract portfolio and allows users to track progress against contract management KPIs (Key Performance Indicators). They can uncover trends, patterns, and business opportunities using custom reports and dashboards.  

  • Improve compliance 

Businesses must regularly review contractual agreements to adhere to the terms and conditions. Contract migration makes all the legal documents available in a single location. The centralized repository comes with user-based permission, which helps to ensure that only authorized personnel access sensitive contract information. Additionally, migration guarantees that all the data is accurate and up to date.  

A digital repository can increase visibility across the entire organization and guarantee that contracts are approached uniformly across all departments and parameters. They also serve as efficient ways to monitor key contract metrics. They can also give you helpful insights into contract risks, performance, and obligations throughout the contract lifecycle. As a result, having a thorough contract database made possible through migration makes it simpler to establish compliance.  

  • Improved scalability 

Moving contracts to an efficient and dynamic contract management platform improve the organization’s capability to handle large-scale contractual agreements. These platforms frequently have better encryption features, which makes the contract portfolio more secure and less prone to attacks. Also, the contract management platform can easily integrate with other business apps like Microsoft Business Central, Salesforce CRM (Customer Relationship Management), or Microsoft Dynamics CRM to create a more connected and interoperable ecosystem. 

Moreover, contract migration can lessen the administrative burden of handling contracts by reducing the time and effort required to search for individual documents. Consolidating all the legacy contracts into one workspace will free up more time for the legal team to work on projects of higher value. They can mass import the documents to the contract management system and accelerate the entire contract lifecycle.  


Digital contracts are constantly expanding in quantity and complexity. Businesses must consistently store and track contracts from users, customers, business partners, employees, and other parties. Traditional document management tools like cloud storage and spreadsheets lack the sophistication necessary to keep up with the pace of a modern business.  

Enterprises require quick and accurate access to their legal documents and information. Contract migration to an advanced CLM system is the best way for fast-growing businesses to manage and store their contracts more effectively. Legal teams can regain control and improve contract visibility thanks to this single source of truth. Moreover, contract migration makes all the data fully searchable. Contract management software has the functionality to filter, organize and build custom dashboards and reports for better outcomes. 

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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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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