Notes on a massive implementation of a SharePoint contract management system

The European dairy farms cooperative Royal FrieslandCampina has selected Contract Manager 2.0 from Dolphin Software for its contract management needs. This news comes from the November Technology Insider. “The system, which runs on SharePoint, will initially be rolled out in the company’s procurement department, but will ultimately also be used in the legal and quality assurance departments, by a total of 600 users. Last year the cooperative had sales of 8.2 billion €uros.”

That terse announcement packs several important points that might be overlooked.

Note the huge role of procurement, since it will be the department that first implements the software. Then heed the staggering number of people involved with contracts. If 600 people in the cooperative (out of 20,000) negotiate, administer, draft, check on, or interpret contracts, contracts touch far and wide.

Third, quality assurance comes from a contract management system. Fourth, for the US-centric among us, this is a multinational dairy with 15,300 member dairy farms in the Netherlands, Germany and Belgium. Its dairy products are for sale in more than 100 countries and it employs 20,000 people in 24 countries. Its legal services and contracts are equally global. Finally, the ubiquity of SharePoint for corporate legal management tasks appears yet again (See my post of June 9, 2009: SharePoint with 6 references.).

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