The Wrong Way to Implement Contract Management Software

I was genuinely excited. We'd spent six long months building the requirements for our new ERP solution. This was going to make things easier for my team, increase productivity, and give us more visibility into our contracts. But I wasn't the only one specifying requirements. The ERP vendor was going around asking every other department what they wanted in a solution too (as they should).

When all was said and done, they'd created a monster. The final product was nothing like I had imagined it to be. It was cumbersome, complicated, and it didn't make anyone's life easier.

In this video, I'll explain why it's always a bad idea to revolve your contract management process around a piece of software.

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Video Transcript

I remember the first time I represented procurement in an enterprise-wide ERP implementation.

I was a director at a large insurance company who was replacing Oracle with SAP, and we wanted to make sure that procurement’s requirements would be addressed as well.

So I sat with the SAP business analyst for six months going over all of our requirements.

I remember the BA asking me on the first day, “Okay, Mohammed. Tell me what you need.”

And I did — what we needed, what we didn’t need, how our workflows should be set up. I wanted to make sure that this solution would be easy and efficient to use for my team because we had some really good processes in place. (Remember, procurement people love process).

And I didn’t want SAP coming and reinventing the wheel. So at the end f the requirements gathering, I was genuinely excited to see how this new solution was going to make our lives better.

What I didn’t know was that after every meeting with me, the BA would meet with legal and say, “Okay, Legal. Tell me what you want.”

And then she would meet with Finance and say, “Tell me what you want.”

And then she would meet with IT and say, “Tell me what you want.”

So after six months of requirements gathering, and “configuring” the solution for what we needed, they finally showed us what they’d come up with. And what they showed us was a disaster of an application.

There were so many tabs and fields of information to fill in it made my head spin. My team had to train on that solution for weeks. And after a few months, they started to bypass the system by saving all of their contracts in shared folders.

And I couldn’t really blame them, because any time you try to build your contract management process around a piece of software, it’s going to fail.

Instead, you should be implementing software that helps your team be more efficient and productive in the way they’re already doing things.

You can learn more about that by getting immediate access to our course on the 4 Pillars of Contract Management.

Just go to and sign up.

Thanks for watching and keep an eye out for the next video where we’ll talk about why doing nothing while you wait for your ERP is probably the worst thing you can do.