Contracts are important for commerce. They decide the premise of transactions and make them legally binding. However, as part of a legal team, you’d be aware of how tedious it is to manage contracts throughout their lifecycle.
There could be several hand-offs and iterations, and terms of agreement need to be recorded during multiple updates and renegotiations. In addition, you have to ensure compliance with applicable industry standards and regulations. Managing all this without the right tools can be backbreaking.
This is where contract lifecycle management software comes in. It can help manage contracts throughout their lifecycle, i.e., from authoring to expiration, while increasing process efficiency. The tool extracts contract data and leverages it to ensure compliance, minimize risks, and reduce cycle times.
But choosing a contract lifecycle management tool can be tricky. While exploring hundreds of options on the market is a challenge in itself, you also have to make sure it has the required features and the vendor is reliable.
To help you with the selection process, we have created a list of the best contract lifecycle management tools (listed alphabetically).
Why do we call them “best”? It’s because these are the highest-ranking (top five) tools on Google's SERP, have user ratings higher than 4 (out of 5), and offer all the key features of a contract lifecycle management software. (Check the complete selection methodology at the bottom.)
User ratings: 4.9/5
Number of reviews: 29+
Agiloft offers a contract lifecycle management suite that can be hosted on the cloud as well as on-premise. Some of its key features include clause library, contract creation, e-signatures, multilingual contract support, and out-of-the-box analytics.
Unique contract lifecycle management feature: Performance Tuning
The tool offers resources that allow users to continuously optimize the tool’s performance. The resources guide users on how to conduct performance-and-load testing, database tuning, time-based rules optimization, optimal index construction, etc.
Support: Agiloft allows users to seek technical support through a Technical Q&A section. It also provides a discussion forum where users can raise and answer queries. Further, there are extensive guides and a library of tutorials users can refer to.
FAQ: What are the minimum hardware and software requirements for setting up Agiloft?
User ratings: 4.4/5
Number of reviews: 17+
Apttus is cloud-based contract lifecycle management software that helps users generate accurate and compliant contracts. Some of its key features include a preapproved clauses library, contract drafting, e-signatures, generation of contracts from quotes, version control, and self-service contract creation.
Unique contract lifecycle management feature: Apttus Training and Certification Courses
Apttus offers in-person and virtual training and contract lifecycle management certifications. These educate users on how to administer the tool through each stage of the contract lifecycle.
Support: Apttus offers forums for exchanging product improvement ideas and discussing product issues with other users. Additionally, there is a resources section that includes extensive product guides.
FAQ: Can I standardize contracts using Apttus?
Answer: Yes. Apttus helps in standardizing contracts across teams and geographies. You can do this through contract rulebook import, rule-based assembly for contract drafting, and rule-based access to users.
User ratings: 4.1/5
Number of reviews: 15+
Contract Logix offers contract lifecycle management capabilities specific to industries (such as banking and healthcare) and departments (such as sales and procurement). Some of its key features include obligation management, contract creation, amendment and addendum management, contract renewal and termination, and parent-child contract linkages.
Unique contract lifecycle management feature: Customer Success Manager
Contract Logix appoints a dedicated customer success manager, at no extra cost, to assist during the implementation process. The manager helps with migrating data to the tool, informs about the tool’s best practices, answers implementation queries, and demonstrates use cases.
Support: Users can seek support by filling out forms, emailing, or directly calling the support team.
FAQ: What visibility will I get into my contracts?
Answer: With Contract Logix, you get visibility into more than just the terms of the contract. You see everything related to a contract: obligations, stages, related documents, tasks, alerts, statuses, and key dates. You can also view previously agreed terms for renegotiations.
User ratings: 4.1/5
Number of reviews: 56+
Coupa is a suite of applications focused on spend management. Its application for contract lifecycle management not only optimizes lifecycle processes but also connects contracts to financial data for proper spend management.
Some of Coupa’s key features include built-in risk mitigation workflows, contract drafting, reviewer history tracking, risk scoring, and a centralized contract repository.
Unique contract lifecycle management feature: Contract Collaboration Module
Coupa offers a contract collaboration module for buy-side contracts to reduce contract authoring and signing time. It allows users to upload required documents, chat with collaborators, add comments, annotate on contracts, and download contracts as Microsoft Word documents.
Support: Coupa offers support via support tickets, phone calls, and emails. It offers two levels of support—basic and premium—depending on the scale and requirements of businesses.
FAQ: How do I invite external and internal stakeholders?
Answer: Coupa provides options for external and internal invites to help users work with stakeholders within and outside their organization. These stakeholders can be invited using the “invite other party” or “invite colleague” options.
User ratings: 4.4/5
Number of reviews: 37+
Icertis is cloud-based contract lifecycle management software that helps organizations negotiate better and optimize contracts from the point they are authored till they expire. The tool offers various features, including risk management, contract creation, compliance, rule-based templates, and contract analytics.
Unique contract lifecycle management feature: Icertis Blockchain Framework
Icertis’ Blockchain Framework for contracts helps reduce risks and ensure compliance by improving transparency and traceability. It eliminates the need for manual review by leveraging smart contracts and automatic executions. It also reduces the risk of overpayments and missed obligations.
Support: Icertis provides a help center where users can raise tickets to seek support and access the product knowledge base. The tool also offers an extensive library of resources, which include podcasts, webinars, and videos.
FAQ: Does Icertis offer API integration?
Answer: Yes. Icertis offers over 200 out-of-the-box APIs for users to customize the tool as per their business requirements.
While purchasing a contract lifecycle management system, here are some additional steps you can take to ensure you select a tool that is right for your business.
Read reviews: To develop a well-rounded opinion of the tool you want to buy, you can read user reviews on third party websites, such as ours. Doing this will help you learn about the experiences of actual users.
Speak with the vendor: Getting in touch with the vendor before finalizing a tool can help you settle doubts and queries. You can also learn about upcoming versions or features that might not be listed on the tool’s website. If you’re looking for a specific product feature or customization, you can also discuss the same with the vendor.
To identify the products featured in this article, we used the following methodology:
We searched for “contract lifecycle management software” in the incognito mode of Google search and gave preference to products that ranked higher in the search results. We judged these products on the below-mentioned criteria until we arrived at the top five tools.
The product should have a rating of 4 or higher (out of 5) as well as 10 or more user reviews on GetApp (information accessed on July 3, 2020).
The product should offer all the core features and at least half of the common features of content lifecycle management software. The core features include contract drafting and document management, whereas the common features include e-signatures, compliance management, contract templates, advanced search capabilities, reports, alerts, version control, and access control.