Sales

Legal Teams: How to Stay Out of the Sales Process While Maintaining Control

Legal Control in the Sales Process-15

For legal professionals like you, managing contracts can one of the most tedious and frustrating parts of the job. Especially if you’re responsible for reviewing every last one that goes out the door.

Considering the average agreement takes  at a minimum 20 days to be created, negotiated, and finalized, inefficient contract management has the potential to drastically slow your sales cycle. If your organization prioritizes legal and sales collaboration in these scenarios, however, it becomes possible to create a more satisfying contract experience for everyone involved.

Simplify the Contracts: Standardized vs. Personalized Agreements

As someone who’s likely managing a mixture of standardized and personalized agreements, it may sound logical to treat every transaction the same. A single contract management process has to simply the sales process, right?

Not exactly. In fact, grouping personalized and standardized deals together usually guarantees a negative customer experience. Just think about it – when a standard agreement like a NDA or Terms of Use receives personalized attention, final delivery likely takes far too long. And that means trouble for a purchase process where your customers expect quick and easy transactions.

On the other end of the spectrum, a client looking for long-term partnership or some other form of personalized agreement that is given a standardized experience probably won’t feel as if they’re getting the attention they deserve. And that’s not a great first impression to make – especially if rushed, inadequate terms open up your business to unnecessary risks.

Related Content: Personalized vs Standardized Contracts: How Knowing the Difference Can Improve Your Sales Process

If you’re using one process for every type of agreement, take a deep breath and relax. Here’s how to fix the problem:

  • Determine your contract ROI. Evaluate every agreement your organization makes to find out how much you’re spending, what the value of each sale is, and which contract type(s) is/are most profitable for your organization.
  • Decide which contracts deserve personalization. Once you’ve determined your contract ROI, identify which agreements are most lucrative so the legal team can dedicate its time and resources toward these efforts.
  • Migrate standardized contracts to clickwrap. Give customers a one-click option to accept standardized agreements, making the bulk of your contracts more cost efficient, scalable, and labor-free.
  • Give personalized contracts a digital makeover. Even personalized experiences can be improved with innovations like templates and dynamic eSignature options.

Increase Legal and Sales Collaboration with Pre-Structured Contracts­

Any agreement presented to a potential customer is the product of legal and sales collaboration. But friction can – and often does – arise before a contract can be finalized and delivered to the client. While salespeople want to send them off as soon as possible and move on to new opportunities, you need to make sure that all of the terms included are suitable and fair first.

But this back-and-forth can take weeks (or months) to complete if both parties are creating a contract from scratch. In fact, it’s why contracting is one of the biggest bottlenecks in the sales cycle. Considering that the average enterprise executes approximately 40,000 contracts, a lot of time and money can be tied up into transactions that aren’t pre-structured.

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Fortunately, it doesn’t take much work to make pre-structured agreements a reality. If you want to simplify the sales process and accelerate the rate at which you close deals, here are a few easy things you can do:

Create a Contract Playbook

Effective legal and sales collaboration starts with education. Start by sharing a sales-friendly guide to teach the sales staff about the company’s standard fallback positions. Within your contract playbook, outline standard contracting terms and acceptable variations, as well as non-negotiable terms and an explanation of which terms are mandatory and why. You can even add details such as possible client objections and workarounds to further aid sales team initiatives.

Build Contract Templates

Eliminate risks and potential human errors by taking some time to build out standard agreement templates. That way, your salespeople have legal team-approved contracts at their fingertips that they can use without delays or negotiation. To make them as useful as possible, make sure to include dynamic terms rendering so that the needs of any particular buyer can be immediately satisfied. Doing so not only gives your sales reps confidence, but gives you and your team the security that all sales contracts adequately protect your business.

Create a Better Customer Experience with Self-Service Contracts

Simply put,  self-service contracts enable your team to work smarter and faster. By giving buyers a system to onboard themselves and/or accept legal terms independently, you eliminate their transaction hurdles and simplify the sales process for your organization. Not to mention reduce your workload, too. This approach enhances purchase experiences and empowers your customers to serve themselves precisely when and where they prefer.

eBook Download: Becoming Self-Service: What Enterprise Tech Needs to Know

As buyer needs and expectations change and business becomes increasingly more digital, self-service contracts can help you adjust to the online environment and meet your clients where they are. In fact,  72% of today’s B2B customers want a self-service contract option to manage their online purchases.

To make your agreements as convenient and quick as possible, your self-service contracts should be presented as digitally native agreements – not merely converted from outdated pen-and-paper formats to a rendered PDF. Using a digitally born-and-raised transaction alternative, you give your sales team the tools to present these contracts on a number of mobile devices – making it possible for customers to review and accept standardized agreements on their own terms.

pactsafe time to signImage showing the turn around time of PDF vs digitally native contracts

Based on our own research, a clickwrap self-service solution dramatically reduces time to close. For the average B2B transaction, this approach reduces the two-week turnaround from verbal commitment to purchase with a Word or PDF contract to just a little over 14 hours on a digital platform.

Using innovations such as  clickwrap, for example, enable you and your team to deliver frictionless self-service contracting experiences and maximize consumer conversions without compromising compliance. You’ll be able to create pre-approved, standardized terms that can be dynamically rendered in real-time based on the customer’s needs.

We get it – contracts can be a complex, time-consuming task for you and your team to handle. But they don’t have to be. Clickwrap contracts give legal teams the power to control the terms without needing them to be in the weeds of every deal, especially low-value deals. To learn more about how legal and sales can both take advantage of clickwrap agreements, download our eBook, 101 Ways to Use Clickwrap.

101 Ways to Use Clickwrap - Download PactSafe eBook


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