Venture Capital Firm Slashes 520+ Hours per Year on NDA Negotiations With AI-Powered Contract Automation

520

hours saved processing NDAs annually

10

of bandwidth freed up per employee per week

5

NDAs processed per week

“Ontra came highly recommended by colleagues in the private equity space, and we vetted the solution by asking about their experience. I’m not surprised by their positive responses. It’s a no-brainer solution for NDAs.”
Operations Lead | Venture Capital Firm

 

Challenge: NDA negotiations distract from core job responsibilities

Historically, this mid-size venture capital firm relied on its operations function to handle legal workflows with support from the CFO, rather than employing in-house lawyers. Only in a handful of complex cases does the firm seek assistance from external counsel. Like most private investment firms, the company needs to execute NDAs to access necessary information for every potential investment, and the number of NDA negotiations has skyrocketed as the firm expands.

In 2021, the firm’s NDA volume reached an all-time high, leaving operations team members – who were responsible for NDAs – struggling to manage core job responsibilities while keeping up with an unsustainable level of repetitive, time-consuming legal tasks. As the team juggled five or more contracts simultaneously, operations professionals spent way too much time manually checking previous agreements and going back and forth to negotiate red lines.

According to the operations team, “As a firm without general counsel or anyone focused internally on legal, it made no sense spending the team’s bandwidth on NDAs.” While this important work had to be done – and done well under tight timelines – the firm needed to free its operations team from the frustrating and never-ending cycle of reviewing and redlining every routine NDA.

 

Solution: Contract Automation simplifies NDA management and frees up teams to focus on high-value work

A few connections in the PE industry recommended Ontra’s Contract Automation platform to the venture capital firm as an effective NDA management tool. The team vetted the solution by asking about their experiences, and the responses were consistent. “I’m not surprised by their positive responses. It’s such a no-brainer to choose Ontra for NDAs,” explained an operations team member.

The resounding endorsements convinced the operations team that Ontra’s Contract Automation was the right solution. As an organization that prioritizes innovation, both in its investments and its operations, the firm found Ontra’s AI-powered contract negotiation platform to be a great fit.

In September 2021, the firm partnered with Ontra to support automating its unsustainable NDA volume via Contract Automation. The operations team found the process of building a playbook and onboarding simple and seamless. Thanks to the expert guidance provided by Ontra’s Legal Network, the firm found that internal NDA expertise was not a requirement.

Since peaking in 2021, the firm’s NDA volume has averaged about five NDAs per week. Contract Automation has consistently kept pace, allowing the firm to accelerate negotiations while using fewer internal resources. One operations team member has reclaimed approximately 10 hours each week alone.

The estimated 520 hours a year the firm previously spent processing NDAs can now be reallocated to high-value work. These time savings have delivered the results the venture capital firm was hoping for: a streamlined NDA process that allows operations team members to focus more on their areas of expertise and less on routine contract negotiations.

The firm’s experience with Ontra offered a clear example of the power of automation and AI to free up valuable team bandwidth. Reflecting on the firm’s easy onboarding and successful adoption of Contract Automation, an operations team member said, “It’s never a bad idea to use purpose-built AI tools from the likes of Ontra because the company is always iterating on its offerings – keeping pace with industry evolutions to continuously optimize automation specifically for VC and PE firms.”

They continued, “After seeing what Ontra has done for us, I look forward to finding other use cases where AI can cut down on repetitive tasks that waste our team’s time.”

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