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How the Right Contract Data Simplifies Your Quest to Reduce Legal Costs

Posted on January 31, 2024 in Blogs, Contract Analysis Services


Corporations are always looking to improve their P&L by reducing expenses, but not all cost-cutting measures are created equally. In fact, an Orgvue survey found 93% of 500 corporate leaders made snap cost-cutting decisions within the last year—and 38% regretted the outcome. So, what are costs that the legal department can safely cut?

  • Unrestrained outside legal spend?
  • Overlapping legal and/or operational platforms?
  • Auto-renewing contracts?
  • Wasteful expenses that are yet to be identified?

Rather than guessing, legal departments need a degree of certainty before they take action to reduce legal costs. Otherwise, they risk jeopardizing disrupting workflows, running afoul of regulatory compliance, or triggering any number of additional unforeseen outcomes. The good news is your business has most of the data you need to make smart adjustments to your budget.

Whether housed in a legacy home-grown system or an enterprise contract lifecycle management (CLM) system, your contracts contain insights that can help with your legal cost reduction—without causing any harmful downstream effects.

Using Data to Cut Legal Expenses

Actionable cost-saving data is tucked away in contracts. In fact, many key insights aren’t available in a format for corporate decision makers to immediately glean the solutions they need. In the past, attorneys would need to comb through contracts for answers to critical expenditure-related questions, diverting their attention from important legal work and turning them into high-paid (and vastly overqualified) administrators.

Even as the transition from legacy systems to CLM platforms occurs across corporations, cost-cutting insights do not automatically rise to the surface. Only through thorough contract review are corporations able to extract cost-cutting insights that can transform their businesses. The large volume of contracts paired with the often incomplete or inaccurate nature of the accompanying data require structure and an incisive review from trained legal professionals. That way, your business can maximize the efficiency of analysis and outcomes.

Outlined below are just a few of the instances where organizations can obtain rapid results in identifying where to reduce expenditures.

Reducing Outside Legal Expenses

If your organization is in growth mode, actively acquiring other companies or assets, you’ll rely on attorneys with merger and acquisition (M&A) experience. If you’ve been using an outside law firm to serve that purpose, contract data can help uncover whether this is the most cost-effective decision for your business.

For example, you might be outsourcing some activities to outside counsel that might be better accomplished by more economical alternative legal service providers (ALSPs). If the scope of legal services includes eDiscovery, document review, or other processes that are more practical when completed by an ALSP or even temporary attorneys, you might be able to achieve the same level of results but at a reduced cost.

Identifying Redundant Tools

Though organizations have worked to centralize and consolidate their data and cloud platforms, wasted spend still slips through the cracks. Estimates suggest 30% of cloud spending is misused, meaning that as much as $180 billion of the anticipated $600 billion organizations will spend on the cloud this year will be squandered.

Contract data can be used in a variety of ways to reduce software expenses:

  • Are there multiple active agreements from the same counterparty? Are SOWs similar but across different functions?
  • Are there contracts from vendors across similar functions?
  • Is the original billing owner still with the company? If not, is the contract auto-renewing?

These are just some of the data points which can reveal opportunities for legal cost reduction. Packaging the data within a clear-cut and actionable report can unveil other signs of wasteful spending.

Finding the Right Contract Analysis Solutions

When used right, contract data can fuel legal cost reduction, but the results aren’t guaranteed. Only when your contract analysis solution balances cost-effectiveness, accuracy, and results will you achieve your cost-cutting goals.

For example, 100% AI contract review can help to accelerate your review timelines, but the technology does not always translate to quality or accuracy of insights. The case of an attorney using ChatGPT in the Southern District of New York just shows how far these unsupervised solutions can lead you astray.

Going with offshore attorneys to cut costs while incorporating human review and scrutiny doesn’t always work either. If attorneys are not familiar with the nuances of the laws of the country (or even states) in which you operate, you might miss distinctions in contracts that might lead you into regulatory noncompliance in the pursuit of cost savings.

In our experience, the most cost-effective legal contract review services include a combination of timesaving AI-powered platforms with scalable teams of legal professionals to verify the results. That way, you can identify where to reduce your legal spend while maintaining the workflows, operations, and compliance your business needs to thrive.

Want to see how the right combination of AI and scalable teams of attorneys can produce impactful reporting? Read our eBook to see how our approach to Contract Analysis Services (CAS) can help reduce legal costs and overcome urgent challenges.


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