What do CLM (Contract Lifecycle Management) implementations have in common with completing triathlons?

To succeed at your first triathlon, you’d be foolish not to enlist a professional – someone who has successfully trained other individuals to finish triathlons – to help you. When starting work with a trainer, the first steps are an interview about goals and measuring your baseline physical capabilities. The information from these two steps allows your trainer to focus your attention on what will make the most difference to reach your goals. If you stick to it, you’re likely to make it to the finish line.

On the other hand, the worst approach is to pick a random triathlon, sign up, and just try to finish. When it comes to CLM implementations, many organisations make the ‘triathlete newbie’ mistake. They immediately start the implementation of a CLM platform without first clarifying what they want to improve or determining the specific steps they need to successfully complete their CLM 'triathlon.’

My Elevate colleagues and I have rescued faltering CLM deployments many times. Two of the most common stumbles we see are failing to clarify goals or take the time to complete an initial CLM Readiness assessment. This results in setting overly ambitious goals or starting an implementation before the organisation is ready to transition to a fully automated system. Without clear goals and a clear understanding of your current state, it is impossible to map out a gradual path to success.

Our experience led us to appreciate the value of developing an easy and quick approach to measuring CLM Readiness and Maturity. We wanted to create a process or tool to help you understand where you are along the CLM Maturity spectrum, the most impactful areas for you to automate or improve, and the steps necessary to take your organisation to the next stage of CLM Maturity.

After almost a year of close cooperation with World Commerce & Contracting (WCC), we are proud to announce the official Go-Live of a free online CLM Maturity tool.

It’s easy to use: you answer ten simple questions, each covering a different aspect of the CLM process. Once completed, you receive a free report documenting your strong and weak points and listing the next steps for you to take to improve each process.

CLM systems are very complex. Supporting the end-to-end contract lifecycle requires an array of functionalities, including a Contract Repository, Contract Request, Contract Drafting, Negotiations, Approvals, and eSignature, among many others. Moreover, each organisation is different, with its own needs and CLM maturity level. These factors make it crucial to identify your contract process strengths and determine your weaknesses and blind spots before starting to go digital.

As with training for a triathlon, knowing your strengths and weaknesses will help you set short-term goals and the right milestones for increasing your CLM Maturity and be better prepared for the automation CLM brings.

This knowledge will help you be more prepared for the emerging CLM challenges. Remember, you are not alone. Elevate and the WCC are here to help and be your guide during the journey.