May 2024 - Making the Case for “Robot-Ready” Contracting Playbooks


May 22, 2024

May 2024 - Making the Case for “Robot-Ready” Contracting Playbooks

AI can turbocharge modern legal work – nowhere more so than in contracting. In just minutes, AI tools can review content, create redlines, insert commentary and assess the degree of deviation of a proposed contract from industry standards or even a company’s standards. While it has the potential to be transformational, before AI can make even a minor impact, preparations must be made. 

AI is like a diligent, yet very green attorney. To be effective, that attorney needs opportunities, practice, feedback and coaching. Ultimately, that attorney must be able to think through the issues and make decisions accounting for precedent, policies, priorities and context. And just like that new attorney, AI needs guidance in assessing these variables so that it can be reprogrammed to improve. 

But unlike for a green attorney, mentoring cannot just be verbally coaching the AI. Rather, what’s required is a written process map capturing how an experienced attorney thinks through the review and processes information to make the best decisions. That calls for detailed instructions that can be turned into detailed coding. It also means crafting very robust playbooks – “robot-ready” contracting playbooks – to unleash the full capabilities of AI. Once the AI is up and running, staff can redirect their time to higher-value work while the AI does the more monotonous high-volume work. 

So what are robot-ready contracting playbooks? 

Robot-ready playbooks are designed to enable purchasers of AI tools to derive actual value from those tools. On a micro level, these playbooks are designed for use by AI implementers, such as CLMs and stand-alone AI service providers that offer tools to assist with contract review, redlining and risk assessment. On a macro level, the playbooks facilitate efforts by legal departments and contract organizations to integrate AI into contracting workflows. Successful alignment of the two enables lawyers and contract specialists to spend much less time on low-value contracting and instead focus on higher-value, more bespoke work for their organization. 

Building playbooks that are robot-ready takes effort, and various options for creating them require change management considerations. But legal departments that put that effort into these playbooks will reap the benefits of increased capacity for higher volumes, reduced cycle times, consistency in risk management, accountability for deviations and increased bandwidth for staff to take on more strategic work. These are competitive advantages for any company, not just the legal department.

In a piece published earlier this year by Contracting Excellence Journal, QuisLex vice president for corporate solutions Andrew Banquer explored these issues, making the case for putting in the time to build robot-ready playbooks and outlining steps to accomplish that. Read the full article here.

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