Contract Management Module – Getting Started
Written below are a few simple steps and considerations that we can follow in order to start using the Contract Management module to enter and track contract related information.
Contract Categorisation – Reference Data
As with any section in ChilliDB, before entering any contract data into the Contract Management module in ChilliDB, it is important to establish a system of categories with which the contracts can be organised.
To do so, assuming we have the appropriate tickets in our user role, we can access Reference Data under:
· System > Reference Data > Create and Maintain
From the next screen, we need to select a table from the drop down list, in this case Contracts Management Categorisation and click display. Depending on how the system was set up, the tree of categories on the left-hand side of the screen will either be blank or may already have some categories that display. Note, there are also options available for Contracts Management Deliverable Categorisation and Contracts Management Workflow Action.
To add new categories, we simply need to right click on the heading Contracts Management Categorisation, which can be seen at the top of the space on the left-hand side of the screen and click Add New Item. After doing so, the space on the right-hand side of the screen will display fields for information to be entered.
· Description – the label/type for the category.
· Description Help Text – this can be used to provide further explanation of the category
· Expired? – by checking this, the category can be expired making it unavailable for use in the system. (This is more likely to be used when later expiring contract categories that are no longer needed. Any contracts that made use of this category are still available and can be searched for but the category cannot be accessed when creating a new contract. Expired categories can be un-expired if needed again. Be sure to select Show Expired Items for the expired entries to be displayed though.)
We are also able to add further sub-categories by right clicking on the category directly and again selecting Add New Item. When right clicking on the category, there are some other options available as well, such as View Item and Maintain Item.
Navigate to Contract Management > Configuration to start selling members (ChilliDB Users) for teams and the period of time for when alerts for various due dates are triggered.
These are sent to the applicable members that have been in the three team fields:
· Executive Team Members
· Accounts Team Members
· Administration Team Members
Under Contract Management, we can find the Create option. Here is where we can begin entering the details for our contract.
Let’s take a look at the basic required fields when creating a new contract.
First, select the Categorisation for the contract, give it a Title, select the Type of contract it is (whether it is Incoming or Outgoing), set an initial Statusfor the contract and then assign a Responsible Officer and an Accountable Officer for the contract. Clicking on Find next to these two fields will allow us to search through our Contact records to assign the appropriate user.
We can continue working through the remaining fields to enter any extra information that may be relevant for the contract such as a Sponsor, who contracted our company (Contracted by Organisation) and a relevant contact person, who we have contracted (Contracted Organisation) and again, a contact person and also upload documents as required.
There are still some sections that we haven’t looked at yet though. (Note: These may or may not be visible depending on permission settings.)
· Opportunity Details
· Proposal Details
· Contract Details
· Deliverables Published
· Closure Details
· Contract Search Availability
These sections allow us to capture further details about the contract as it moves through various stages or status updates. Note that dates entered in the various sections are used for triggering alerts, such as review dates and due dates. Another point to consider here is that a Deliverables Published Date is also required for alerts to be triggered when using Deliverables. If no alerts are being triggered even when we have entered dates, it is worthwhile checking this section to see if a date has been added, also. One other thing to consider here is that entering a Deliverables Published Date effectively locks the deliverables meaning that no more can be created unless this is cleared. This may or may not require someone with the appropriate permissions to do so.
Once all of the relevant data has been added, we can click Save. If we need to update this later, when we view the Contract details screen, we just need to click on Edit located in the top right corner of the screen.
Viewing the Contract and Adding Deliverables
To view the contract, we will need to first search for it (Contract Management > Search).
On the search screen, we can search using either the name of the contract or by selecting specific fields to base our search on. Using the fields is a useful approach when we want to; for example, bring up a list of contracts that have review dates due within the next month.
After making our choices, or entering the name of the contract, click Search and the results will be displayed in a grid at the bottom of the screen. By going to the drop down menu in the top right corner of the grid, we can also Re-Allocate contracts to different users, or export/print the results in the grid. To go directly to the contract screen to view/edit its details, we just need to click on the Title of the contract in the grid.
Once looking at the contract, we can view/edit the details (editing was mentioned previously) as well as add Deliverables for the contract, if necessary, and/or Notes to further track any information that is related to the contract.
At the bottom of the screen, we have several tabs:
o This is where we can create/view Deliverables(items that we need to keep track of for the lifetime of the contract).
· Funding Summary
o A summary of any funding details that have been created will be displayed here.
o This is where we can create/view Notes for the contract
· Related Contracts
o We can create links between contracts here so that we can access them more efficiently if needed.
· File Attachments
o Any attachments associated with the contract or the Notes on the contract can be accessed from this tab.
o Any changes or significant events are tracked here (e.g. alerts dismissed, creation date, actions that are changed, etc.)
To create Deliverables, assuming they have not yet been locked, click on Create in the top right corner under the Deliverables tab. Much like when we entered data for our contract, here we can specify details for the particular item that needs to be tracked regarding the contract. Note that Categorisations will also need to be set up through System> Reference Data > Contracts Management Deliverable Categorisation beforehand. Most fields here are similar to the contract with the exception of whether we want to Generate Alerts for the deliverable. We just need to select either Yes or No and if we have chosen Yes, then an alert will be triggered related to the Review Date and Due Date. As mentioned earlier, for these alerts to be triggered, the Deliverables need to be locked via the Deliverables Published field in the contract.
Notifications can be scheduled specifically by going to the Actions drop down list in the top right corner of the screen and clicking on Scheduled Notifications.
Next, click on Create, select a Deliverable to associate the notification with if required, select the type of Notification from the drop down list, choose a date, assign the Notification to a team member and if needed, add Comments.
There is also a calendar in the Contracts Management Module that can be used to give us a daily, weekly or monthly view of upcoming important dates for the contracts we have created in the system.
The calendar can be accessed either through the menu Contract Management > Calendar or under the Actions drop down list when viewing a contract.
When viewing the calendar, we can filter the information displayed either by searching for a specific contract by name, or by selecting options related to the Contract and/or Deliverables in the tree on the left hand side of the screen. Just click on the arrows to select options for how you’d like to filter the information displayed and the calendar will be updated accordingly. This is useful to remove contracts that we might not be responsible for. One other thing we can do here is to add colour codes to the different aspects to help give us a quick visual glance at the Contracts/Deliverables. These can be assigned to any of the filter options available.
Once everything has been created, we just need the relevant users to track, create and update information regarding the contract and respond to alerts/notifications as required.