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How contract automation can be used by regulated businesses

Contract automation within regulated businesses is no longer a nice-to-have. Manual contract management - devised of spreadsheets, emails and calendar checks - is a quick way to fall foul of your compliance requirements. 

A study by AIIM (Association for Intelligent Information Management) found that 64% of regulated businesses prioritise contract management automation.

If you’re working in Financial Services, Healthcare, Biotech or a similar industry, automating contract management is critical to your business’s future success.

What is contract automation?

Contract automation is the use of technology to automate and streamline various aspects of the contract management process. Businesses turn to contract automation to address common issues caused by manual approaches such as:

  • Time-consuming processes for creating, reviewing, and approving contracts.
  • Human-made errors when extracting and storing contract data 
  • Poor visibility and control over a large volume of contracts kept all over the place
  • Compliance challenges, including ensuring adherence to regulatory requirements
  • Not knowing what their contractual obligations are and whether they are fulfilled 
  • Legal risks associated with errors, inconsistencies, and missed deadlines

Automating contract administration and streamlining processes allows your business to tackle these challenges more effectively.

What are the benefits of Contract Automation?

Prioritising contract automation gives regulated businesses a stronger foundation when managing the entire lifecycle - leading to maximised, compliant outcomes.

Contract automation benefits include: 

  • Improved Efficiency: Repetitive tasks such as contract creation, approval workflows, and document management can be automated, reducing manual effort and saving time
  • Restored Visibility: Centralise contract data in a single repository, providing a clear line of sight over contract status and obligations
  • Proactive Management: Implementing automated alerts gives your business foresight over renewals and expiries so you can take early action and prevent revenue leakage 
  • Enhanced Accuracy: Using AI to automate contract data extraction and analysis minimises the risk of human error, giving stakeholders confidence in the records they’re working with
  • Defensible History: Access a history of activities, including changes, approvals, and communications, facilitating internal and external compliance audits
  • Faster Decision-Making: Accelerate contract cycles by streamlining approval workflows and providing timely alerts and notifications, enabling faster decisions. 

Automating your contract management processes is seamless when the entire business is equipped with the right technology. 

Key Features of Contract Automation Software to Consider 

Before going to market for contract automation software, it’s important to know what areas need to be digitised, who will be responsible for them and what they expect from the tool. 

Automating your approach should have all Legal, Procurement and Finance teams working in harmony - rather than strengthening existing silos. 

These are some of the contract automation features you should prioritise:

1. AI-powered contract data extraction and analysis 

AI-powered contract data extraction and analysis benefits your business by automating the extraction of critical information such as contract terms, obligations, and deadlines.

By reducing manual effort and improving accuracy, your business can enhance efficiency, mitigate risks, and ensure compliance with contractual obligations. 

Automating data input allows faster, more informed decision-making and risk mitigation, all while ensuring unparalleled accuracy and efficiency in your operations.

2. Automated alerts and reminders

Automated alerts and reminders notify stakeholders about critical contract milestones, renewal dates, and compliance deadlines.

The time usually spent trawling through calendars can be replaced with proactive management of renewals, contract-related tasks and obligations.

By reducing the risk of missed deadlines, oversights, and compliance lapses, your business can mitigate risks, maintain operational continuity, and maintain contractual relationships effectively.

A Gatekeeper dashboard showing a renewal reminderRecieve automated alerts and reminders with Gatekeeper

3. Contract Summaries via OpenAi

Contract automation software powered by OpenAI provides concise and easy-to-understand summaries of complex contract terms and provisions. 

It provides users with quick comprehension of contract content, enabling stakeholders to identify key terms, obligations, and risks at a glance. 

By streamlining contract review processes and improving decision-making, you can accelerate contract negotiations, minimise disputes and optimise contract outcomes.

4. Best Practice and Customisable Workflows

Automating workflows enhances and streamlines compliance by embedding organisational policies and regulatory requirements into each stage of the contract lifecycle. 

Access to Best Practice workflow templates means you can automate your processes faster. Their customisability allows you to automate processes and tailor them to your regulatory and operational needs.

Using a workflow engine, instead of manual and fragmented approaches, ensures consistent adherence to standards. You can significantly reduce the risk of errors and legal issues, all while eliminating bottlenecks and silos. 

Watch our webinar about Gatekeeper's Best Practice Workflows

5. Version control and audit trails

Version control and audit trails track changes made to contract documents over time and provide a comprehensive history of modifications, approvals, and revisions. 

This feature enhances transparency, accountability, and compliance with audit requirements. All changes are time, name and date stamped for clear ownership.

By automatically maintaining a clear version history, businesses can mitigate disputes, resolve discrepancies, and demonstrate regulatory compliance during audits and legal proceedings.

Wrap Up

Contract management automation provides significant benefits for regulated industries by addressing key challenges. It ensures stringent compliance with regulatory requirements, reducing human errors and maintaining accurate records.

Automated systems enhance compliance by adhering to industry regulations, minimising the risk of non-compliance penalties.If you're ready to find out more, book a demo with one of our specialists today. 

Ian Bryce
Ian Bryce

Ian writes on a variety of topics, bringing together his own knowledge and experience with that of industry experts.


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