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Contract Lifecycle Management: Why It’s Become an Essential Part of the Modern Technology Stack

Contract Lifecycle Management: Why It’s Become an Essential Part of the Modern Technology Stack


June 3, 2021

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Guest blog post by SAP partner Icertis
COVID-19 has been a crash course for business leaders on the dangers of delaying strategic investments in digital transformation. It can leave your enterprise too slow and brittle to adapt, innovate, and win in the face of disruption. The sudden shift to remote working and the global breakdown of supply chains exposed the lack of scalability and flexibility of existing IT systems, enterprise processes, and supply chains. Intelligent, connected, cloud-based solutions are the future, and they are essential today.
At the same time, the pandemic has highlighted the business-critical nature of the source-to-pay process, especially regarding procurement. This became apparent to all industries, not just manufacturing. Suddenly, the relationships between buyers and suppliers grew closer – and everyone’s eyes were opened as to just how much they depend on their suppliers. According to a ProcureConEU study, 56% of companies are reliant on existing suppliers for continuing operations. Yet through the pandemic, when global supply chains began breaking down, 40% of the businesses surveyed were unable able to source local suppliers.
The rise of contract lifecycle management
These types of supply chain challenges explain why contract lifecycle management (CLM) is fast becoming a key element of the modern technology stack – with contracts acting as the foundation of modern commerce. Contracts define the essential and ever-evolving nature of relationships between businesses and their suppliers, as well as customers and partners. They are the single source of truth for the obligations, entitlements, and risks in supplier relationships. By structuring and connecting this information, buyers can optimize the entire source-to-contract process and ensure the intent of every contract is fully realized. This is more than contract management. It’s contract intelligence.
Mature contracting processes also leverage CLM solutions to turn static documents into strategic insights and competitive advantage. A robust CLM platform, for example, enables businesses to pivot quickly in times of uncertainty, improve compliance, and reduce risks. According to Forrester, during the pandemic, companies with mature CLM were able to pivot faster and make good decisions with greater confidence – even through periods of unprecedented disruption. Why? “More-mature firms treat contracts as the beating heart of their business relationships and they use CLM to connect to core business applications, integrate with transaction systems, and inform key business decisions. These leaders move beyond static analysis and reports on contracts to operating with a dynamic and evolving understanding of the risks, entitlements, and obligations in their contract portfolios.
Icertis and SAP: Streamlining Contracting Together, Organization-wide
An SAP Gold Partner, Icertis is redefining CLM with the Icertis Contract Intelligence (ICI) platform, which enables procurement organizations to achieve all this and more. Available on SAP Store ,ICI helps businesses strengthen key relationships by promoting supplier collaboration, respond to new challenges and opportunities and have visibility into agreements today’s marketplace demands.
As global supply chains become more complex, ensuring contractual commitments to sustainable and ethical practices are met at each link in the supply chain becomes more challenging. To address the challenges, organizations are turning to robust CLM platforms, like ICI, to automate the tracking of sustainability commitments across suppliers. This enables a new level of commercial collaboration, visibility, and accountability.
With unmatched technology and category-defining innovation, Icertis pushes the boundaries of what’s possible with CLM. The AI-powered, analyst-validated ICI platform turns contracts from static documents into strategic advantage by structuring and connecting the critical contract information that defines how an organization runs.
Today, the world’s most iconic brands and disruptive innovators trust Icertis to fully realize the intent of their combined >10 million contracts worth more than US$1 trillion, in over 40 languages and 90 countries. And analysts validate the strategic value and functionality of its CLM solution. For example, Icertis was recognized as a leader in the 2016, 2019, and 2021 Forrester Wave, receiving top scores in 27 out of 32 evaluation criteria. Icertis was also named a leader in the Gartner Magic Quadrant because of its comprehensive vision for the future of CLM and the depth and breadth of its software’s functionality.
As a winner of the SAP Pinnacle Awards 2021 and as Partner of the Year – SAP Store, Icertis works closely with SAP to integrate with and innovate around SAP solutions. The ICI platform extends the SAP ecosystem by plugging into SAP Ariba and SAP Customer Experience solutions, enabling automation of the contract management lifecycle. The integrations provide access to critical information so people can make better decisions faster – all while working within the enterprise application environment of their choice. There’s no need for users to switch applications and lose productivity.
Customers using the Icertis Contract Intelligence platform are realizing the benefits of fast-tracked digital transformation of their contract management processes by:
  • Increasing the speed of business and responding rapidly to new opportunities
  • Maximizing revenue and minimizing cost across the organization
  • Automating compliance and reducing risk for every contract
  • Gaining visibility into any contract, anytime, anywhere

For example:

  • Abbvie Canada reduced its contract cycle times by 92% with 65% contracts signed within just 24 hours
  • KPIT reduced its order-to-cash cycle by 50% and gained 100% visibility into contract terms
  • Microsoft’s Enterprise Volume Licensing department cut contract administration costs by 50% and handled peak demand at 175 agreements/minute
Learn More
Want to learn more? Join us at SAP SAPPHIRE NOW, where Icertis is a Gold Sponsor of the event:
  • Register for the event
  • Visit the Icertis Partner Showcase Page
  • Attend the procurement track session titled "An Icertis Digital Procurement Transformation Journey: Daimler Case Study" where you'll learn how Daimler, the world's biggest manufacturer of commercial vehicles, streamlined relationships with over 500,000 suppliers using integrated contract lifecycle management and sourcing solutions from Icertis and SAP. Once you register for the event, you can catch the 15-minute session at any of the following schedules convenient to you:
    • June 8, 12:15 PM BST (11:15 UTC) – EMEA
    • June 8, 10:30 AM PT (17:30 UTC) – NA
    • June 22, 9:00 AM IST (3:30 UTC) - APAC