08 Jul When you need more: Conga Contracts delivers
by Alexandra Stehman
Composer alone does not provide any negotiation or redlining features, nor does it provide a means for the legal team to manage one core set of clauses to be used across various document types. Dynamically and conditionally including specific clauses, based on, for example, product selection or governing law, can be tricky, causing formatting headaches. The extent of managing versions of legal language is as far as Microsoft Word enables (which is not very). This is when Conga Contracts builds on top of Composer to add these capabilities.
Conga Contracts: Document security, clause management, negotiation, and True-Up™
Enter Conga Contracts, fine-tuned to help you and your customers through the entire contracting process. One of the main advantages is that Conga Contracts can handle complex situations involving redlined clauses, as they can be individually routed for approval. Contracts also offers a unique feature called True-Up™, which eliminates the overhead of manually updating Salesforce records from redlines, empowering the user to update fields straight from redline edits automatically.
Legal language versioning and history tracking
Simple documents, such as NDAs and order forms, might not require the powerful Clause Management features. However, T&Cs, MSAs, SOWs, and other more complex documents often necessitate the introduction of clause management. In these situations, documents are decomposed into a clause taxonomy and imported into Salesforce. Here, Legal can manage individual clause language in a versioned way, so that contracts generated historically maintain their original (redlined) language, while new contracts can be made from the latest versions of standard language—all the while, enabling the ability to easily report on which customers are operating under which version of specific language.
Mitigate risk with automated approval routing
Approvals to finance, IT, and executives can be automatically routed based on which clauses are included in a document. Historically, for lengthy contracts, this has required contract managers to use Microsoft Word’s commenting feature to draw these approvers’ attention to the specific lines requiring approval and emailing the documents to the approvers and waiting for the reply—or even printing out specific pages with ink annotations.
With Conga Contracts, the approvers have the option to view the entire document, if they desire—or simply review the language in question and approve in Salesforce. Automation can be built to prevent the generation of the document until all of these approvals have been received. This can help ensure that no inappropriate language winds up signed!
Negotiation and redlining—Managing who edits what
Often, once a contract is generated with approved language, it is risky to allow a Microsoft Word version of the document to be accessed by anyone but Legal and the counterparty. Using Conga Contract’s Negotiation features, it is easy to allow preview access for other users, such as Sales, and even enable them to send for negotiation! But the language is strictly controlled by Legal.
Through Contracts’ powerful negotiation engine, customers receive a Word copy via email that they are free to modify and respond with their edits. The document is automatically received into the system once the customer replies to the email with the edited document, and the redlines automatically calculated. While anyone can be granted the privilege of accepting redlines, it is usually carefully doled out only to Legal and qualified contract managers, who can manage updates to the document based on the counterparty’s requests. Then, a fresh copy can be regenerated and resent for endless rounds of redlining! (But hopefully none!)
But… automation requires Salesforce development skills
While qualified users can add clause bundles to documents, drag and drop clauses onto documents, and otherwise utilize clauses in compiling documents, this is a routine, repeatable chore that can be automated. While this is entirely feasible, it requires knowledge of the Salesforce Object Query Language (SOQL) to do so. In basic cases where there are a few parameters driving configurability of your output documents, this is acceptable. However, for organizations with highly configurable products, and therefore documents, the level of SOQL and automation can be daunting for the average Salesforce admin. This is where Conga Orchestrate brings the full power of seamless automation to the mix—check back next week for this final installment in the series!
Alexandra is a CLM Solutions Architect here at Simplus. She has over five years’ experience implementing Salesforce solutions for clients across multiple different verticals. Her recent work includes growing Simplus’ CLM practice, including implementing SpringCM and Conga solutions, providing process and project leadership, overseeing implementations, leading and growing the Conga and SpringCM teams, managing the partner relationship with SpringCM and Conga, and assisting in pre-sales activities for SpringCM and Conga engagements.