On the Same Wavelength with apsolut
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apsolut has joined forces with contract management specialist Icertis to provide a solution using artificial intelligence for a global packaging and bottling machine manufacturer. Jean-Paul Wehrens and Frank Baumann describe the project:
Krones provides breweries, beverage bottlers and food producers all over the world with machines and complete production lines for processing, filling and packaging products.

1-Frank Baumann, Principal at apsolut
2-Jean-Paul Wehrens , Senior Partner at apsolut

Every day, millions of glass bottles, cans and PET containers run through a Krones line. Krones doesn’t just offer hardware: it also provides hi-tech services in such specialisms as digitisation, process technology and intralogistics .
Working with subsidiaries all over the world, the Germany-based company ’s contract management department oversees thousands of contracts received from clients, to ensure they are acceptable and don’t contain any hidden surprises .

Traditionally Krones has had to review contracts manually, often hundreds of pages long, which meant the chances of missing something were high. Its contract management systems needed updating. This would include integration of the systems into the company ’s SAP Ariba platform. Krones called on intelligent spend management and digital business transformation consultants apsolut with which it had a long- term relationship and which has delivered several complex SAP- driven projects .

To carry out the project, apsolut teamed up with US -based Icertis, the leading provider of contract lifecycle management solutions and pioneer of contract intelligence.
Roman Howe, Vice President, Europe, at Icertis commented that contracts touch every part of the enterprise, impacting critical operations and governing every dollar in and out of the business .
He explained that Icertis transforms these powerful commercial agreements into structured, connected data and applies AI to make sure what’s agreed to in the contract is actually carried out in the real world. “ With partners like apsolut, Icertis enables shared customers to uncover hidden revenue, savings, and risks in contracts to help their business succeed,” he said.

The project kicked off in early 2023 with a first phase to gain control of sales contracts by installing the Icertis Contract Intelligence solution, with the initial aim of gaining control of sales contracts. The second phase of the AI- based system will create seamless Integration with Salesforce CLM to extend its scope to all sales contracts .
Finally, the third phase, due to be completed in early 2024, will bring procurement contracts under control by creating seamless integration into SAP Ariba. Third party contracts will be loaded into the ICI platform so that risks and violations in terms conditions and clauses can be identified, while masterdata and attributes information can be automatically extracted.

If any concerns arise, the system will point users to the precise area within the contract that is potentially problematic so that it can be reworked and renegotiated. Needless to say, the AI-based system will save a huge amount of time and resources by identifying any anomalies automatically and cutting out the need for people to trawl through contracts by hand.

All contracts in the company will be stored in one digital place, giving complete visibility and accessibility, while the risk of faulty contracts will be virtually eliminated.
Jean-Paul Wehrens – Senior Partner & Executive Sponsor and Frank Baumann – Principal & Project Manager for the Icertis project at Krones AG .