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Becky Holloway

10 Key Elements for CLM #1 – The Repository

If you’ve spent any amount of time around the contract management world, then you are familiar with this type of list – 10 things every contract management solution should have. Just about every CLM vendor out there has done the list before, but we’d wager ours looks a little different than any you’ve seen before. As with most things at Malbek, we like to go against the grain. We revel in finding new and creative ways to solve age old problems. We believe the saying “Well, that’s the way it’s always been done” needs to go away for good. Stick with us through our “10 Things” series and see for yourself.

Arguably, a place to store your contracts is the most fundamental part of any contract management solution. Repositories can take on many forms. In fact, one of the most common places people store contract documents is in their email, followed closely by share drives and laptops. All of these contract repository options should make you shudder.

There are obvious issues with using make-shift storage options, like a shared drive, for contracts, ranging from poor security control to limited visibility. But the problem that we take the greatest issue with is that these options don’t provide much, if any, search capability, making the information in the contracts “unfindable” and therefore of limited value. If you can’t find it, it essentially doesn’t exist. If it doesn’t exist, it’s of no use or value.

Even if you’re a step ahead and not using email to store your contracts, likely your CLM tool still doesn’t have robust search capabilities that it ought to have. Contract repositories and search functionality are like peanut butter and chocolate or kids and summer vacation. They just go together. Without the ability to search the repository, the contents of it are practically useless. We’ve all had the harrowing experience of trying to find a piece of information in a single email in Outlook. Not a pretty sight! Imagine searching for a specific clause from a contract 4 years ago amongst hundreds, if not thousands, of other contracts. It’s like finding a needle in a haystack – inefficient, frustrating, and potentially very risky if you cannot find it and miss obligations.

At Malbek, we know that your contract repository needs to have security, besides robust search capabilities, with various permission levels so that only authorized users can access the sensitive information contained within the contracts. We didn’t build Malbek Contrax™ with a repository that just stores your documents. We built it to protect and harness the value in your contracts.

At Malbek, we draw inspiration for the functionality and usability of our products from the popular tools available to consumers today. We see no reason why consumers should enjoy a delightful product experience in their personal life, but at work should struggle with clunky and complicated, outdated systems. For search, Google is the benchmark, and so we modeled our repository’s content search capabilities after Google. To find a specific item based on your criteria, we are all used to the shopping experience, so we modeled our faceted search and filtering after Amazon.  We like to say that with Malbek Contrax™, it’s as easy to search for information in past contracts as it is to look up something on Google or Amazon.

Can you even imagine being able to do that today with your contracts? If that thought seems like a pipe dream, then give us a shout and we’ll show you it’s not! And to find out more about how Malbek is disrupting the “10 Things” list read our new CLM eBook.

“Be sure to read the second installment in this series looking at contract authoring.”