Contract repository: what it is and why you need one

Buyer’s Guides
February 19, 2024
6
min
Discover how to build a robust contract repository and database for your business in 2024.

Having a good grip on your contracts is important for businesses at any stage. Whether you’re the GC at a fast-growing scaleup or leading legal at an enterprise, you’ll still be expected to answer the following questions:

  • Where are our contracts? 
  • Which contracts have been signed? 
  • How much risk have we taken on?

If a company reaches its next funding round with no visibility into where contracts live, whether they’re signed, or what they say, it will make those due diligence conversations pretty difficult. The same is true for larger companies preparing for a routine contract audit, or reapplying for an accreditation. 

A robust contract repository empowers you to respond quickly and confidently, but a fragmented approach to contract storage and tracking makes everything ten times harder. 

What is a contract repository?

A contract repository is a solution that enables teams to store, track and manage contracts in one place. It acts as a single source of truth for contracts and their data, giving businesses greater visibility into their agreements, deadlines and obligations.

Businesses with a central contract repository in place can find, query and progress contracts faster, rather than wasting precious time sifting through shared drives, email inboxes and cabinets for the relevant term or document.

Naturally, contract management maturity varies across businesses, meaning some organizations benefit from far more sophisticated contract repository solutions than others.

For those just starting out, a shared drive and spreadsheet will often be sufficient. Businesses that are growing quickly or already manage large contract volumes will need something more robust.

Let's explore what the starting point looks like, how it compares, and what you should be striving for if you want operational excellence in 2024.

The starting point for early stage businesses

To get to base camp when it comes to your contract repository, you can start with a simple contract management spreadsheet. This typically involves using a spreadsheet as the front end of your contract database and a shared drive as your back end, which gets you to square one at least.

Looking for a basic solution for storing and tracking contracts? Check out this free contract repository template.

Given its simplicity, this is a common approach amongst early stage businesses without the resources to fuel a long-term solution. But it certainly has its risks and limitations:

  • A spreadsheet doesn't offer the functionality needed to manage contracts beyond just hosting the data within them, meaning inefficiencies and risks persist throughout the rest of the contract lifecycle.
  • A spreadsheet is a static file, meaning the data within it can't trigger contract reminders without a lot of technical / manual work behind the scenes.
  • There's a lot of manual work involved, including pasting important contract values into the spreadsheet for individual contracts, which isn't a sustainable approach for lean legal teams with growing contract volumes.

A modern contract repository solution like Juro solves all of these problems, centralizing contracts and automating the admin work associated with contract tracking and monitoring.

Before we explore what a robust contract database looks like for businesses like yours in detail, let's compare it to the more basic approach.

Traditional contract database vs modern contact repository

A traditional contract database tends to be fragmented, relying on several different tools to store and track contracts. This means they require a lot of manual work to build and maintain. This is distinct from a modern contract database which automates the heavy lifting, giving teams more time to focus on strategic work.

Other differences between a traditional contract database and a modern contract repository (like Juro) include:

Traditional contract database Modern contract repository
Contracts scattered across shared and local drives All contracts live in one unified workspace
Data is captured and updated manually in a spreadsheet (or not at all) Contracts are built as structured data, with smartfields to capture important contract values and simplify tracking
Limited visibility into contracts for internal stakeholders due to fragmented storage and tracking Stakeholders can quickly and easily identify and query contracts and their data (if they have the right permissions)
Not possible to set automated reminders for key contract dates Users can set automated contract reminders for key deadlines, meaning no more missed renewals

How to create a more robust contract repository

If you're sold on the benefits of creating a system of record for contracts, and are ready to move on from a basic spreadsheet, what should you do next?

First you should consider contract repository software. Or, if you're looking to streamline your entire contract process, you evaluate all-in-one contract management software.

A solution like Juro will provide a central storage solution for contracts whilst also capturing the metadata within your legal agreements in a customizable contract dashboard. This can then be filtered and queried to quickly surface relevant contracts and highlight important data points.

Juro Demo - Smart storage
Want to see Juro's data-rich contract repository in action? Book a personalized demo.

Since these contract repository solutions are often automated, you'll never have to manually update a spreadsheet with the relevant version or data again. Instead, this information will populate and refresh automatically based on the values within the agreements.

This is a great way to make sure everyone is working from the same version of a contract, but also that the data finance and ops teams are using stays reliable.

Why businesses choose Juro's contract repository

A contract tool like Juro transforms your contract portfolio into a dynamic contract repository, unlocking the following features and benefits:

  • OCR search functionality. Find and query contracts in just a few clicks, surfacing key contract data in seconds.
  • Granular access controls. Keep control over who can access which documents, and which workspaces contracts live in.
  • Customizable table views. Monitor contracts at scale with customizable table views that make tracking simple.
  • Enterprise-grade security. Store contracts more securely with enterprise-grade security, including SOC2 type 2 compliance, advanced encryption, and more.
  • Quick and easy contract reporting: Run reports on contracts quickly and efficiently, making tracking your legal KPIs a breeze.
  • Automated contract reminders: Never miss a renewal deadline again with automated contract reminders based on key contract dates.

Best of all, Juro offers visibility into contracts throughout their lifecycle, not just once they've been signed. Juro empowers scaling businesses to create, agree, execute and manage contracts - all in one platform.

No more jumping between email inboxes, shared drives, eSigning tools and spreadsheets. Juro's data-rich contract repository makes storing, tracking and reporting on contracts quick and easy.

“There’s no contract that I don’t have visibility on in Juro, which gives me a great deal of comfort" - Okechukwu Eke, Head of Legal, Moniepoint

Juro is trusted by 6000+ of the world's leading companies, including Trustpilot, Deliveroo, Remote, AngelList and TheRealReal, enabling businesses to agree contracts 10x faster than traditional tools.

To find out how Juro's powerful contract repository would benefit your team, fill in the form below to book a personalized demo.

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