Solving Modern Procurement Challenges with Intelligent Tools

Procurement management is complex, and today’s procurement teams need to overcome several challenges in an ever-changing landscape. In this post, we review some of the obstacles that prevent procurement teams from operating efficiently and explore the way intelligent procurement solutions can provide value to an organisation. The Docusign Agreement Cloud is built for innovative procurement teams that are looking to develop an agile workflow. 

Accessing agreements and contracts with ease

Very few organisations have all of their contracts stored in one universally accessible place. Often contracts are decentralised and stored in multiple solutions. Some procurement options and contract repositories make it difficult to share and synchronise information. 

In a Forrester Consulting Study, commissioned by Docusign in January 2020, only 6% of procurement leaders said they store agreements where they can be easily searched and analysed by technology.

This causes issues when needing to update contracts to meet new business or regulatory demands or to analyse data around risk or exposure in existing contracts. Docusign Insight can bring together your documents into a single, searchable database. Insight has built-in OCR (optical character recognition) capabilities, so even images of documents can be converted into searchable agreements. It brings together agreements from across your organisation and allows procurement teams to access and gain visibility across all agreements. This functionality gives teams the confidence to locate important contract terms quickly to answer business and legal questions.

Contract accuracy and trust

For any organisation, it’s essential that contracts are accurate. Sometimes, manually entering data can lead to errors, missing information or inconsistency. Employees need to trust the information stored in a centralised system. If a contract originates from a third party using their template, they may use different terminology and clauses. If an organisation has agreements from multiple companies, it can reduce trust in search results. Docusign Insight analyses agreements using AI processing - it uses a combination of NLP (natural language processing), latent semantic indexing and other machine learning technology. 

Using AI enables procurement teams to be able to search and filter agreements via concepts rather than just keywords. This feature can help to locate a contract even when narrow search terms aren’t returning anything. Agreements generated using Docusign CLM, and Docusign Insight can be created using templates that produce documents that are consistent and easy to search. Using an AI solution can reduce the potential for mistakes, increase accuracy and free up procurement teams from manual work. It’s also much easier for the procurement teams to analyse the content of contracts. 

Reporting on contract terms

Reporting is a critical part of a procurement role - individuals need to be able to demonstrate the impact of their work and represent their function as strategic business leaders. The team needs to report on the impact of their processes, measure performance and identify strengths and weaknesses. Regular reporting is a necessity for successful procurement teams. Insight provides custom dashboards with built-in data visualisation technology for impactful reporting. The technology empowers teams to generate reports with ease and highlight critical terms without the need for coding skills or intense training. It gives teams the functionality to identify trends and spot anomalies quickly. 

To discover more about today’s procurement challenges and find out how to solve them using Docusign Insight, download our whitepaper on ‘Building a Modern Agreement Workflow for Procurement’. It demonstrates how technology can help make procurement teams a strategic driver of any organisation.