As more and more telecom companies has expanded from fixed line and mobile services into multiple enterprise scale services, the operations has massively increased. This has now led to multiple divisions within the enterprises like -network operations; enterprise services; and consumer. Which in-turn has created tremendous contract data that can be leveraged for making big decisions around the next strategic move for sustained growth.
Telecom, as a sector is built on contracts and relationships. Their complexity of technology and relationships to form the ‘network of networks’ places contracts at the core of the sector’s required capabilities.
One of the topmost drivers for CLM in a telecom organization is – Unlocking the value of contract data to support business decisions.
Some of the top drivers to bring in contracts technology could be:
Part of a larger digital transformation initiative.
- Enhance business performance.
- Enhance business reporting
Core challenges for telecom companies that can be solved with an enterprise scale CLM:
- As a digital industry, there is an abundance of financial, customer and operational data which in disparate in different storage spaces or repositories.
- There’s a lack of insights from the contract portfolio and contract management, which means the businesses are demanding an uplift in capability in Contract Data Management.
- The current CLM technology solution is seen as a Commercial Contract Management tool rather than a business tool which has constrained adoption and use beyond the Legal and CCM teams.
- Benchmarking regulatory data points for contracts and legal data to manage risk.
- Compliance failures in the areas of Pecuniary and non-pecuniary penalties leading to reputational risk and losing competitive advantages.
For a detailed look at core challenges for telecom companies, please refer Agile and compliant contracting for Telecommunications.
Proven approach to enterprise CLM for telecom organizations:
Having identified the near-term goal, number of other stakeholders need to be included to envision a solution that will have several strands:
From a technology perspective, they can leverage the investment in the existing CLM technology platform. To essentially utilize the fragmented commercial data across many systems, adding another would not be a good solution.
- The current CLM technology platform will require some integration with the Enterprise Resource Planning System, CRMs, Supplier Management platforms, etc. and, through this, access to financial and operational data sets.
- Several new or revised contract clauses will be needed – but as General Counsel, these core responsibilities can be handled with a next-gen contract management solution
- Active stakeholder management becomes be critical to ensure buy-in and availability of resources (financial and non-financial) – but the activity is targeted and focused on a critical business issue
- A need to overcome the view of the CCM team that change represents an unmanageable increase in workload.
With a very targeted business-driven needs arising from the following issues, an enterprise CLM is becoming a critical initiative at several telecom enterprises globally.
- Customers are decreasing contract duration as they are increasingly worried about being locked into today’s technology in a rapidly changing world.
- To maintain commitment, enterprises need to offer customers more flexibility.
- Flexibility is a competitive advantage requiring greater commercial and contractual adaptability and agility.
- Contract Data Management to be done in a conscious and controlled way requires improved analysis and oversight of contract change requests to better forecast the impact of changes on revenue and revenue recognition.
To start your enterprise CLM upgrade initiative, here’s a guide for -> Navigating the Network: A Guide for In-house Counsel in the Telecommunications Industry.