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“I’ve been really impressed with the fantastic responsiveness and level of support from Gatekeeper, they are always incredibly willing to spend time problem solving and developing the system to help solve whatever issues we are facing.” - Jacqui Ward, Senior Legal Counsel, Melbourne Racing Club

Name: Melbourne Racing Club
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Description: Melbourne Racing Club is one of Australia’s leading sporting and event providers, offering thoroughbred racing, sports and recreation, as well as running major events and operating various hospitality venues.
Key Stakeholders for Gatekeeper: Senior Legal Counsel, Paralegal, Finance & Procurement, internal contract owners

Summary

No longer just a race club, the Melbourne Racing Club has grown to become a large multi-departmental business, running sophisticated commercial operations. Before working with Gatekeeper, internal contract management processes hadn’t scaled to match the club’s growth.

Fragmented and manual approaches to contract management led to:

  • Contracts being stored inconsistently, and not having a central repository of signed agreements
  • Contracts expiring or auto-renewing without intention
  • Tracking key dates of contracts being a very manual task, leading to contractual and commercial risk

Gatekeeper offered the solution the Melbourne Racing Club had been looking for with a centralised, searchable contract repository and customisable triggers for automated notifications.

These features minimised legal risk and kept the business ahead of key contract events such as expiries, allowing proactive decision-making about the portfolio.

Gatekeeper continues to deliver a high level of support and responsiveness as Melbourne Racing Club looks to incorporate further contract lifecycle benefits beyond storage.

Why Gatekeeper?

  1. Centralised and searchable contracts. As the business scaled with multiple departments responsible for contracting, executed versions weren’t being stored consistently, making them hard to find. Gatekeeper’s centralised contract repository and OCR Search Engine standardised the contract approach, created one source of truth for contracts across the business, and allowed the team to search for and find their contracts quickly and easily.
  2. Automatic notifications. Manual internal processes often required contract owners to be on top of all obligations and key dates, which became time-consuming and created contractual and commercial risk. Gatekeeper helped the business to define and configure contract triggers that sent automated notifications via email, preventing unwanted contract expiries and auto-renewals.
  3. Continued contract ownership. Melbourne Racing Club needed to ensure its contracts could be handed over easily and accurately to new owners when existing employees departed. Gatekeeper allows the bulk shift of contracts to a new owner, providing seamless business continuity.

The Full Story

Melbourne Racing Club has grown from a small club operating two racing courses to acquiring additional courses, a portfolio of hospitality venues, expanding its offerings to major events, and venturing into different business areas - changing the face of the organisation over the past fifteen years.

With multiple departments responsible for contracting, and the breadth of contract types across the business, Melbourne Racing Club found itself in a position where executed versions of contracts weren’t being stored consistently, and finding copies of contracts - including draft versions - wasn’t always easy.

Manual processes prevented contract owners from successfully tracking contract obligations, key dates and expiries, resulting in contracts expiring or automatically rolling over for a new term without being adequately managed.

Contract ownership was also difficult to maintain while levels of staffing changed as the business grew - often resulting in contracts being missed or requiring individual contracts to be moved manually to a new owner.

“The legal risk was high – the risk that we were locked into contracts we didn’t want, key negotiation timeframes being missed, contracts existed that we didn’t know about. We wanted to move to a system which would ensure we could maintain the usual high levels of professionalism with our counterparties” - Jacqui Ward, Senior Legal Counsel, Melbourne Racing Club


By deploying Gatekeeper, Melbourne Racing Club stored contracts from all departments in a consistent manner. With access to a centralised and searchable contract repository, the business was able to find its contracts - and different versions - quickly and easily.

Contracts were stored securely with appropriate privacy measures set between departments so employees could only access contracts relevant to them.

With the platform in place, renewals, contract expiries and key contract dates were easily addressed and could be simply tracked. Gatekeeper helped the club to create automated notifications that were triggered via parameters set by stakeholders. This not only minimised risk and reduced administrative overheads on teams, but also helped to minimise  unexpected expenses.

Gatekeeper also made it straightforward to reassign contracts either individually, or in bulk when team members left the business or when teams were restructured. Although a relatively small feature, this had a big impact on MRC in terms of ensuring business continuity.

“We’re thrilled to be working with Melbourne Racing Club as they continue to go from strength to strength,” says Patrick O’Connor, CEO at Gatekeeper. "Business growth, especially through acquisitions, has the potential to create higher levels of contract risk. We’re delighted to have been able to bring increased levels of visibility and control to MRC’s operations and look forward to helping support them in the future."

By using Gatekeeper to centralise and automate their contract management process, Melbourne Racing Club was able to scale internal processes successfully and is now in a position to start realising benefits beyond contract storage and automated reminders.

“The ongoing benefits will be significant – Gatekeeper will help with version control over template documents, streamline processes, meaningful reporting, assist the legal team with prioritising contract reviews, get the legal department moving forward with technology and increase exposure and interest in contracts with senior management.” - Jacqui Ward, Senior Legal Counsel, Melbourne Racing Club


For more information on how Gatekeeper is helping its customers centralise contracts and get ahead of key dates, contact us 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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