If you’re running a small and mid-sized startup figuring out how to track sales contracts is one of the most unlikely things to keep you awake at night. But it’s most likely at least a partial cause of the things that do keep you up at night. Missed renewals, sales and customer service staff searching for contract data, your marketing team asking what logo’s they can and can’t use are the least of it. Wait until you attempt to raise a round of investment and your contracts’ black box contains who knows what, negotiated over the years.
- How to Track Sales Contract Efficiently
How to Track Sales Contract Efficiently
Sales contracts are the backbone of revenue and profitability. Efficiently tracking them not only holds all parties accountable but also offers strategic insights on how to close deals faster and de-risk your company. Let’s have a look at the essential steps and tools to simplify the journey of getting to know how to track sales contracts for your scaling company.
1. How to Track Sales Contracts 101: Establish a Centralized Repository
The first and foremost step in tracking sales contracts is to establish a centralized repository. If your executed contracts are sitting your founders or head of sales email inbox you’re not going to have a fun time later on. Look to get solutions such as contract management software or cloud-based platforms up and running early. These tools offer a secure and organized space to store, access, and manage all your sales contracts. A centralized repository enhances visibility and accessibility, making it easier to track contract statuses, key dates, and obligations.
There are three types of repository that you should be looking to setup:
- Contract Template Repository: As a company, you’ll maintain template contracts sent to customers for their review before negotiations commence. Store these in a repository accessible to your sales team without editing privileges.
- Contracts In Negotiation: For each customer you should have contracts that are in progress, these need to have contract version control to stop things getting messy
- Closed & Signed Contract Repository: This should be separate from how you store your contracts in negotiation. Mixing these with contracts under negotiation will leave you stuck when searching for final contract data.
Contract Sent has built contract versioning and treats your contract negotiations like a sales funnel to get you to closed won and signed.
2. Standardize Contract Templates:
Consistency is key in contract management. Standardizing contract templates ensures that each sales agreement starts off following a uniform structure, making it easier to track and compare. Implementing templates streamlines the contract creation process, minimizes errors, and enhances overall efficiency. It also facilitates easier tracking by establishing a clear framework for critical information such as product details, pricing, terms, and conditions.
Where this process often becomes difficult is when your negotiated contracts deviate heavily from your standardized contract templates. Contract Sent allows you to easily compare your original contract template with the negotiated contract to quickly understand what has changed and what has stayed the same. This is a great way for the legal team to serve up the changes in an easily digestible way for the companies commercial decision makers.
3. Implement Contract Version Control:
Contracts often undergo revisions during negotiations or amendments. Implementing version control is crucial to avoid confusion and ensure that everyone is working with the latest iteration of the contract. Clearly label and document each version, highlighting the changes made. This not only aids in tracking contract evolution but also provides a transparent audit trail, which can be invaluable in case of disputes or disagreements.
Contract Sent does this easily with the click of a radio button.
4. Utilize Automation for Alerts and Reminders:
Sales contracts come with various milestones, deadlines, and renewal dates. Manually tracking these events can be time-consuming and prone to human error. Leverage automation features within contract management tools to set up alerts and reminders for key dates. Whether it’s a contract renewal, payment deadline, or performance review, automated notifications ensure that no critical dates are overlooked.
Redline What Matters
Raise Changes For Approval To Turnaround Contracts Faster
5. Categorize and Tag Contracts:
Organize your sales contracts by categorizing them based on criteria such as customer type, product/service offered, or contract value. Implementing a tagging system allows for easy sorting and filtering, making it simpler to track contracts based on specific parameters. This categorization not only enhances visibility but also aids in generating insightful reports and analytics.
6. Integrate with CRM Systems:
For a holistic approach to contract tracking, integrate your contract management system with your Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software. This integration ensures that sales contracts are seamlessly linked to customer profiles, providing a comprehensive overview of the customer relationship. This linkage facilitates better tracking of sales performance, customer interactions, and contract history.
7. Regularly Review and Update Contracts:
Contracts are dynamic documents that may need updates based on changes in business practices, regulations, or market conditions. Regularly review and update your sales contracts to ensure they align with the current business landscape. Keeping contracts up-to-date enhances their relevance and accuracy, making them easier to track and manage effectively.
Mastering the art of how to track sales contracts is an important part of successful contract management. It will help you to grow processes that will scale your business and cut out a lot of manual work later down the road. Establishing a centralized repository, standardizing templates, and utilizing automation are just a few steps in the journey. By embracing these practices, businesses not only enhance efficiency but also position themselves for sustained growth and success in your scaling efforts. Start improving your contract tracking processes now.