Contract management is a vital aspect of any business that deals with a significant volume of contracts. Contract management systems (CMS) are designed to automate contract creation, approval, tracking, and monitoring. However, not all CMS can meet your business needs; therefore, you must define the requirements of a CMS that will be suitable for your business.

A CMS that can manage the entire contract lifecycle – starting from contract creation to its expiration – is the best choice for your business. Here is what your CMS requirements should cover:

1. Contract creation

Your CMS should have a user-friendly interface that enables contract creation without much effort. It should provide the option to customize templates, clauses, and terms for various types of contracts. Additionally, it should support contract creation in multiple languages.

2. Contract approval

Your CMS should automate the approval process of contracts to ensure it meets the required standards. It should provide customizable workflows to reflect the approval hierarchy and enable timely approval of contracts.

3. Contract tracking

Your CMS should enable you to track contracts and key milestones, including expiry dates, renewal dates, and deadlines for deliverables. It should alert you when important dates are approaching to allow you to take action.

4. Contract monitoring

Your CMS should offer real-time monitoring of contracts to enable you to track the performance of the parties involved. It should also integrate with other systems like ERP, CRM, and financial systems to facilitate real-time monitoring.

5. Contract compliance

Your CMS should ensure compliance with regulatory requirements and company policies. It should integrate compliance checklists and audits to ensure all contracts adhere to the required standards.

6. Quality control

Your CMS should enable quality control checks to ensure contracts are error-free and consistent with your company`s standards.

7. Reporting

Your CMS should provide customizable reports to enable you to track the performance of your contracts, including their financial impact, compliance, and risks. The reports should also highlight areas that require improvement.

8. Security

Your CMS should be secure to protect sensitive and confidential information contained in your contracts. It should maintain audit trails to enable tracking of all activities related to the contracts.

In conclusion, your CMS requirements should cover the entire contract lifecycle, from creation to expiration. The CMS should offer the necessary features to ensure compliance, quality control, tracking, monitoring, reporting, and security. By identifying the required features and functionalities, you can choose a CMS tailored to your business needs.