The Model T of Contracts and Its Next-Gen Replacement

There’s a time and place for everything. For manual contract processes that fall short of enabling teams to create more value, that time and place has passed.

Henry Ford, partnering with the Dodge brothers (yes, I said Dodge) created the Model T., known as “Tin Lizzie,” revolutionizing the automotive industry. As visionary as he may have been, Ford failed to recognize the demand for innovation as the needs of the world around him changed. Clutching to his beloved Model T after his revolutionary technology had been matched by others., he allowed his rivals, Chrysler and GM, to launch cars superior in both style and mechanics right under his nose.

Filing cabinets, emailing or even mailing contracts back-and-forth to get them signed is the Model T of contracts. While those methods at one point had their place and time, in today’s technology-enabled world they’re archaic, and innovative, faster, smarter contracting solutions are taking their place.

To demonstrate, and stick with the automotive theme, think of business departments like engine parts. In a classic car as you begin to replace old parts with new, the old parts have to work harder to keep up and can become a clog that can stall or kill the engine. As other departments begin to adopt more modern methods Legal has to work harder to keep up with the new pace of business, producing contracts faster than ever before. Like with the engine, it doesn’t make sense to add six more spark plugs or a second carburetor to match the output of the new heads you just put on, it would be too much work. Does adding more people to your Legal team to keep up with business make sense? Or, does it make more sense to implement a modern solution that integrates, streamlines, and simplifies the process, freeing up time for more meaningful tasks and projects?

Maybe you’re thinking, we’re using a modern tool, we use Office 365 and/or an e-signature “solution.” While Office is more like a suite of tools, a CLM platform is more like legos, providing opportunities to connect multiple products at a single point of access, driving greater value and a greater ease and ability to scale. And an e-signature tool only solves for one small slice of your contract process, leaving several unaccounted for and leaving Legal without the visibility, control, and ability to enable other business functions they need.

There’s no doubt it’s time to recognize the demand for innovation when it comes to contracts, which is why modern Legal teams are investing in technology at an exponential rate. They understand there’s an opportunity cost component to partial solutions or continuing archaic methods of contract management—the ability to do more strategic, value-producing activities. With the implementation of CLM platforms, planning everything based on the past, considering that’s what you had access to is a thing of the past. Now, everything is planned in the future—because the future already exists in your contracts.

See how Legal uses the Cloud to boost efficiency, automate compliance, and drive more impact to the bottom line.