One of the most time-consuming parts of any business deal is the negotiation process. This is something that can take weeks and months to carry out, especially if you're dealing with a business from another country. Efficiency is everything in business, and one product has come onto the market to help target this problem. Technology is helping to address that issue.
Parley Pro is one service that has aimed to change the way negotiations are done. I spoke to Lilian Caldeira, Co-Founder and CEO of Parley Pro, to talk about how technology has made negotiations more efficient.
David: I understand your Parley Pro product makes contract negotiations faster, so what makes you stand out from other such services?
CEO: Parley Pro provides a combination of contract management and negotiation capabilities. It's the only strategy that focuses on the three stages of deal, strategy, and contract. It's a discussion-based platform that encourages collaboration from afar. Teams can build a workflow that helps both parties come to an agreement faster than ever before, and to achieve win-win results.
Our discussion board maintains the focus on the key issues and concerns to help negotiations come to a natural conclusion faster.
David: How do you make the negotiations go quicker?
CEO: Today most negotiations involve a lot of manual clerical work. Going through emails and trying to place each revision into one document consumes a lot of time and effort. Errors also tend to appear when this happens, leading to negotiations taking longer.
Most businesses still create contracts in Microsoft Word, which are then emailed to those involved in the deal. Revisions are collected and the contract amended. This cycle can tick over multiple times before a conclusion is reached. And bear in mind that 60% of millennial women don't know how to negotiate, so it's hard to even get started.
With Parley Pro, the discussion board leads negotiators through a workflow that targets each key issue and implements each change on a single document. The days of multiple contract versions are over. Discussions on each central issue are aggregated and centralized on the discussion board, so each party can easily address them.
Parley Pro is designed to reduce friction and make sure each issue gains the attention it deserves.
David: Is there a specific industry or market segment that you target?
CEO: Parley Pro is an asset to any business that has to negotiate a contract. It doesn't matter if they're a home owner looking to purchase a property or a Fortune 500 company negotiating a merger. Our first target markets are corporate sales, legal, and procurement teams, but it can be used in any market.
David: Where did the idea of Parley Pro originate from?
CEO: To start with, I was a VP of professional services. Dealing with contracts involved a lot of Microsoft Word documents being sent back and forth. There were mistakes, amendments, and lots of different versions floating around. It was when I went out to lunch with a client and we went through a contract in person that the idea for Parley Pro struck me. Why couldn't this be done online?
But instead of just matching the process of two people sitting down with a piece of paper, we created a piece of software that could do so much more. It was a platform where teams could organize themselves, delegate, and aggregate everything on the same platform.
Negotiation is a process, not a thing, so Parley Pro focuses on the negotiating process not managing pieces of paper.
David: Do you plan on adding any additional product features in the future versions? If so, anything you can share at a high level or concept stage?
CEO: We are constantly adding new features, but the long-term future for us is in artificial intelligence and more automation. As artificial intelligence improves, we expect negotiation software to focus not on the legal side of things, but on the high-level vision of a business.
We have already started to move towards this through implementing features that use the same methodologies as artificial intelligence. Ultimately, this is about building a better user experience.
Conclusion – Get Down to Business
The business world is moving faster than ever before. Long negotiations are not beneficial for either side. And the risk of making a mistake that could invalidate the deal has to be avoided. Parley Pro has shown itself to be a solution that not only makes negotiating deals easy, but doing it in a way that's still legally sound and reduces overall costs by improving the process.
This is the future of negotiation and the quicker a deal is concluded the quicker each business can get back to doing what they do best.
How do you think the future of contract management and negotiation is going to change?