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Leveraging Contract Data: The Two Types of Data Every Legal Team Needs to Track Today, and How

On Tuesday morning, we partnered with IACCM to host a webinar on how to get the most out of contract metadata and process data. During the webinar, we defined both types of data and gave specific use case examples for both. 

This is an incredibly important topic for all forward-thinking legal and contracting teams. The next generation of contracts leaders are going to be the ones who can transform static contracts into dynamic data stores. Below, I share five key takeaways from our presentation. You can access the full presentation at this link here.

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5 Key Takeaways:

  1. Metadata is structured data about what's in your contracts that can give you business-critical information.

  2. Process data is a derivative of metadata that enables you to optimize and strategize.

  3. In the Age of Big Data, manual data collection (e.g., collecting data in spreadsheets) just doesn't scale. It's fine to start out using manual methods, but manual collection often ends up being error-prone, slow, and costly in terms of resources and time. If you can implement technology that lets you draw metadata automatically from the contract creation process, you'll be able to understand and leverage your contract corpus in real time, while saving resources and hassle.

  4. That said, deciding what data to track is a business and strategy issue, not a technology issue. The data is not the driver, the problem you’re solving or the question you’re asking is. When it comes to thinking about contract data, then, it's important to widen the lens through which you’re examining your business, because contract metadata can provide value not just to your immediate team, but to Finance, Sales, Marketing, and even to senior management. So, when you’re thinking about what data fields to track, think about what matters to your organization. Do you have a top-line revenue goal, and if so can you demonstrate a set of high profitability or high risk parameters (e.g., specific K terms)? Is your company thinking about “business intelligence” or “client relationship management” initiatives? If so, think about what kinds of data will help for those.

  5. Finally, it's critical for teams to create a contract repository, and to make that repository searchable by Legal. Access to this data allows Legal to oversee risk management and compliance strategies. 

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