I sometimes get asked why I started another legal tech software company.
A bit of background: In 2010, I founded Contractually, a web-based tool that enabled businesses to automate contract generation, saving them tons of time with drafting contracts and agreements.
In 2015, we were acquired by Coupa, and I worked there for three years. Then, Brendan Mulholland and I (he was Lead Developer for Contractually and worked as a Senior Developer and Product Manager at Coupa) decided to start a new company which would become Recital.
Why? I’ve already done this once and arguably had a very good run, so why go again? Part of the answer is that I’m wired for entrepreneurship and love to create. Along with that, I saw an opportunity.
When we were promoting Contractually and later Coupa CLM (both revolutionary browser-based tools at that time), there was one big sales objection. And we heard it often.
That objection? It was that most lawyers still create and negotiate their contracts using Microsoft Word. I could write an entire post about why Word retains a commanding presence as a contract authoring and negotiation tool, but needless to say, it’s not going anywhere.
So how do you solve for that? How do you allow contract professionals, especially in-house counsel, to keep using their familiar tools (Word, email, cloud storage) and make them more efficient? How do you capitalize on technological advancements that will never be native to a tool like Word or your email inbox?
That question was the impetus for Recital, a tool that searches your inbox and cloud storage for contracts, automatically organizes all relevant files and emails, and creates the ability to open up contract comparisons with a single click.
How does it work? Recital’s machine learning capability allows it to “search” your email history and your cloud storage tool for documents that look like contracts. Then, when you receive a new contract version from a party with whom you’re negotiating, it will identify it as a contract right from your inbox.
One click on that attachment and Recital will pull up the two most recent versions AND show you a redline comparison. It will also index all your emails with colleagues and other parties regarding that negotiation.
Without searching, you get a single pane of glass with all the relevant info about that deal, including all emails and documents, auto-organized for you. When you’ve got dozens of deals in the hopper, this can be a huge timesaver. Most importantly, it’s intuitive and doesn’t require you to change how you work. You’re still working with the tools you use daily (Word and email).
Compared with the arduous and expensive project of implementing a complete CLM (contract lifecycle management) solution, Recital is a breeze to implement and adopt.
We even have a one-day promise: Within one day of signing on to Recital, contract professionals can put it to use, saving time, avoiding errors and getting a ton of value.
If you’re tired of the “death by a thousand cuts” of constantly toggling back and forth between tools to get a deal negotiated, I’d love a chance to show Recital to you.