Your guide to redlining software for contracts in 2024

April 24, 2023
Discover how contract redlining software can enable your teams to collaborate faster and more efficiently in this guide. 

What is redlining software?

Redlining software is a technology that enables teams to make changes and revisions to documents electronically, rather than adding their redlines using pen and paper. 

Just as electronic signatures have replaced wet signatures for modern businesses, redlining software replaces the traditional negotiation process, offering greater efficiency and flexibility for businesses that want to collaborate on agreements in real time.  

Businesses are gravitating towards contract redlining software and moving away from manual contract redlining processes, like redlining in Word or Google Docs. Why? Well, there are a few reasons. Let's explore them now.

Contract redlining software vs traditional document editors

While Microsoft Word does provide some helpful features for contract redlining, the tool is built on static files, so it doesn’t offer the collaborative functionality required to work on agreements simultaneously. When using Microsoft Word for redlining, contract owners still need to:

  • Send files via email: this often results in delays since contracts can sit in email inboxes for weeks before they’re discovered and redlined
  • Navigate version control: this creates confusion as different versions of a contract exist in different places, each being worked on by different people 
  • Find a way to sign: Word isn’t a contract platform, and it lacks functionality for the rest of the contract lifecycle as a result 

With these limitations in mind, it’s clear that Word and Google Docs can’t deliver the advanced redlining features that growing businesses need to agree contracts quickly and efficiently.

If businesses want to streamline negotiations and remove blockers to growth, they will benefit from a digital redlining solution like Juro instead. Juro enables teams to agree contracts 10x faster than traditional tools, helping you get to capture revenue on your own terms.

To see Juro’s digital redlining functionality in action, hit the button below. Otherwise, keep reading to find out exactly what contract redlining software is and how it works. 

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How does contract redlining software work?

Contract redlining software enables parties to add their comments and suggestions to a digital copy of a contract

These comments and suggestions are also known as digital redlines, and they’ll flag which parts of the contract you’d like to change or negotiate with counterparties. 

Depending on the type of contract redlining software you use, these comments and suggestions can be added and viewed in real time by the parties, making it quicker and easier to reach an agreement on a contract’s final terms.  

Let’s run through how this works in a contract management platform like Juro, for example. 

1. Share contracts with counterparties for review 

Juro enables teams to send contracts for internal and external review in just a few clicks, without leaving the platform. This can be done either by copying and pasting a unique link to the contract and sharing it, or by inserting the counterparty’s email address in the relevant box. 

This is an inherent improvement on redlining in Word since it removes the need for you to save the draft copy of the contract in Word, log into your email address, upload it, and send it. Instead, you can share contracts for review and negotiation instantly, which saves time and reduces friction.

2. Add and manage redlines in just a few clicks

When the counterparty accesses the contract, they’ll be invited to either sign it straight away or add their redlines, comments, and suggestions

Juro’s collaborative contract management software enables teams to: 

  • Drag and drop comments 
  • Make suggestions directly in the contract 
  • Tag other users in comments to assign roles
  • Create comment threads to discuss your position 

All of this functionality makes adding and managing legal redlines seamless. Rather than sending your redlines across different versions of a document and various email threads, all of the digital redlines are captured in one place, creating a single source of truth during contract negotiations.

Benefits of using legal redlining software

1. Ability to collaborate in one place, in real time

The biggest advantage of using contract redlining software is that it enables teams to collaborate with counterparties in real time, rather than working separately on different versions of the document. 

Before Juro, counterparties would convert a PDF contract into Word to make amendments. In Juro, they move straight to eSignature - Sahana Jayashankar, Sales Ops Manager, Mentimeter

This can speed up the contract lifecycle since teams can address redlines as soon as they’re added to a contract. In a manual, Word-based workflow, parties would need to wait for updated versions of a contract to be saved and shared. 

2. Enhanced version control

Redlining software also gives contract owners greater control over which version of a contract is being worked on, and visibility into exactly who is using which versions, and which activities are happening in these. 

For example, a redlining tool like Juro enables teams to scroll back through a contract timeline to review changes. Juro users can review a detailed audit trail of user activity throughout the contract’s lifecycle, or they can scroll back through different versions of a contract, with complete visibility into who created them and when. 

3. No more data loss 

Since all of the previous versions of a contract and the changes made are captured in full, contract redlining software eliminates the risk of data loss during negotiations

It’s easy for requests to be lost when they’re shared via email chains or on the phone. But if you redline contracts in a platform like Juro, all of this data is captured by default, because all comments, edits, and suggestions are captured in one place. 

Juro allows us to track everything, so contract negotiations, notifications, comms with the counterparty, is all captured in one place - Victoria Sörving, Chief Legal Officer, Funnel

4. Customizable approval workflows 

Some stakeholders don’t need to be in the details of a negotiation, but they do need to approve final contracts before they’re signed. Advanced contract redlining software enables teams to control when these stakeholders are invited into the negotiation process for faster and more efficient redlining workflows.

A collaborative contract management platform like Juro offers businesses the opportunity to fully customize their contract approval workflows. Juro users can set approval sequences where individuals are asked for their approval in a specific order. They can also set up approval workflows for individual templates, or for contracts that meet specific conditions. 

5. Better counterparty experience 

Contract redlining software also delivers a better experience for counterparties. This is because Juro reduces friction throughout the contract negotiation process by bringing all communications into one platform, rather than asking counterparties to jump back and forth between several different tools. 

Juro’s contract management platform is also intuitive and easy to use, making it easy for internal teams and counterparties to adopt and use. 

It’s great to see negotiations in Juro instead of receiving changes in a PDF or Word file - Nicolas Costa, Director of Customer Ops, Koombea

Redlining software: where to start

If your business is outgrowing traditional editors and you need a more collaborative, intuitive contract redlining solution, Juro could be a good fit. 

Juro’s collaborative, flexible, and data-rich contract management platform enables you to move faster by streamlining collaboration between legal and business teams. To find out more about how Juro could enable you to agree contacts 10x faster, fill in the form below.

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