The Silicon Review
“Stop losing your contracts in folders and shared drives”
Every company, large and small, has contracts. When companies are smaller, these can be easily managed on a server or computer by the owner/founder and dates are often tracked in Excel or in Outlook. As the company grows, more people start signing contracts, more contracts start auto-renewing, more reporting is needed, and pretty soon emails are flying frantically and hours are wasted on searching, reporting and trying to stay on top of key dates.
That’s the situation that Ken Button found himself in while President/General Counsel of his previous company. “We auto-renewed a contract for $25,000 for copier maintenance on copiers we did not even have anymore,” says Ken. “That was the last straw.” Ken went out to look for a simple, easy way to solve this pain point, and was horrified by what he found. “The systems we looked at were big, expensive, hard to implement, and hard to use.”
Ken never found a system that he felt comfortable rolling out to his team. After leaving that company, he co-founded ContractSafe to overcome the drawbacks and barriers to adoption in contract management. ContractSafe’s mission is to provide easy-to-use, fast-to-implement and affordable contract management services. Ken and his partner Randy are laser focused on ease of use and speedy adoption. Their primary goal is to help companies easily and quickly manage the contracts that they have. ContractSafe helps a company keep everything in a single place, organized. Everything is searchable, even scanned documents. Reports are easy. Alerts are emailed out and can be customized. ContractSafe easily integrates with other key systems like DocuSign or SalesForce, to make sure signed contracts are automatically loaded into the repository. It has Artificial Intelligence to help contract managers quickly and accurately set up critical information.
Ken is proud that customers now consistently rate ContractSafe highest on ease-of-use, ease-of-implementation, and customer service. Says Ken, “Our whole goal is to make things easier for our customers. The more people that will use a tool, the easier it has to be.”
In conversation with Ken Button, Co-Founder and CEO of ContractSafe
Q. How robust and flexible is your contract management system?
ContractSafe is a modern solution using the latest technology, including AI, which means we roll out new features regularly (always with a focus on ease of use), and that the platform overall is very flexible. Our customers range from Healthcare to Non-profits, with large public companies and 2-3 person small companies. There is a wide range of plans and features that work and can be adapted to any industry or company size.
Q. Explain about your security strategy to prevent issues like loss of documents and data leaks.
Security is at the heart of everything we do. There are robust permissions to control who sees what. ContractSafe is hosted on AWS to leverage all of Amazon’s best security practices.
ContractSafe has an annual SOC2 audit and penetration test. Each customer has a unique encryption key, and files are stored in a stand-alone online container. All documents are encrypted at rest and in transit. Our site offers more advanced security tools as well, such as optional MFA, SSO, and IP White Listing.
Q. How do you deal with the “never-ending change” in digital transformation?
Our leadership team has been building technology since the ‘90s. Part of what makes it exciting for us is the “never-ending” cycle. We see this more as an opportunity than a negative. There are endless opportunities to make the site easier and better for our customers, and lots of competition to help you stay focused and competitive. It always gets easier and more affordable to add important, previously complicated features like AI and to make them interesting and, more importantly, useful to customers.
Q. How do you gather insights to update your systems?
ContractSafe has a customer success team that is very involved with the rest of the team. From onboarding to customer support, they stay actively involved with customers. We also survey customers on new features they want to see and canvas our sales team to gather information. We then decide on what new features/enhancements to focus on. The goal is always: Help customers do what they need to do faster and easier.
Q. What is the most crucial issue addressed by your contract management system?
Ease of use. So many systems when we were looking to purchase were bloated and had tons of bells and whistles that were irrelevant to most companies. This makes adoption harder and usage more difficult. We have talked to so many customers of other systems who cannot get their team to use a complicated system because it requires too much training and change management.
We believe if our system is easy to install and use, then we can get our customers up and running quickly, and their users up to speed quickly, and they will get value from the system quickly.
Q. How do you market your services?
Referrals from existing customers, word of mouth, customer reviews, online advertising, and 3rd party review sites. We’re at a really nice point where our earlier customers are moving to new companies and insisting they sign up for ContractSafe right away.
Q. Do you have any new services ready to be launched?
We have recently launched great new features like Redlining, converting scans to Word documents, better integrations and a full Archive for our customers.
Lots of exciting new stuff in the pipeline as well!
Q. What are your trajectories for the next five years?
We grew at over 100% last year. We expect that to slow down a bit this year as we are getting bigger. But the plan is to continue to grow and help more customers by focusing on ease of use, customer satisfaction, and continuing to innovate.
Meet the leader behind the success of ContractSafe
Ken Button is Co-Founder and CEO of ContractSafe. He is a former general counsel and has 20+ years of experience founding, leading, investing in and advising growth companies. He and his co-founder, Randy Bishop built ContractSafe based on their frustration in trying to find a good, easy-to-use contract organizer. They also previously co-founded Verengo Solar and grew it from a start-up to over $100 million in sales. Previously, Ken served as a senior executive at ePolicy Solutions, which was sold to a subsidiary of ChoicePoint, and practiced law at O’Melveny & Myers and Winston & Strawn. Ken is a member of Young Presidents Organization, and is on the Board of Advisors of the UCLA Institute of the Environment and Sustainability. He received a J.D. from the UCLA School of Law and an undergraduate degree from the University of California at Berkeley.