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Case Study

Case Study: How a Large University Reduced Sponsored Research Agreement Review Times by 75% with LegalSifter


LegalSifter Review


  • Team managing over 2,000 complex sponsored research agreements (SRA) annually
  • SRAs are worth hundreds of millions of dollars to the university
  • Reviews have tight turnaround times and they only have 10 people managing all SRAs


  • Team uses LegalSifter Review's AI "Sifters" for fast contract reading and understanding
  • Sifters highlight risks, missing concepts, and offers negotiation recommendations
  • Implementation includes training on AI and university-specific strategies


  • Reduced initial contract review times by over 70%
  • Cut total contract completion times by 20%
  • Increased managerial capacity by 30% without expanding the team

At a large research university in the northeast, a small contract management team of just 10 members handles over 2,500 sponsored research agreements (SRAs) annually. These contracts are critical for securing hundreds of millions of dollars in research funding each year. 

The Challenge:

Sponsored research agreements aren’t simple documents; many are complex, more often than not on the other party’s paper. The challenge for the team was real: they needed to process a growing number of contracts with tight deadlines all while keeping up with changing contract laws and regulations. Training the team well, ensuring they felt valued, and preventing burnout were all important yet challenging goals for leadership, too.

LegalSifter’s Solution:

The university sought an out-of-the-box solution that could be configured for their specific needs. LegalSifter Review, our AI contract operations software, was the perfect match. LS Review’s AI “Sifters” are trained to accurately read and understand contracts in seconds. The software provides expert guidance that flags risks, important missing concepts,  and makes recommendations for negotiation. Using LegalSifter Review, the contract team could efficiently review and analyze SRAs before signing, ultimately reducing risk while cutting down time and freeing up staff to focus on more challenging and rewarding tasks. 

Throughout the implementation journey, LegalSifter experts provided the contract services team training on AI tools and configuring university-specific negotiation playbooks and guidance, ensuring the team felt confident and empowered. This step was critical in transforming their approach to contract management.

The Impact: Real Results and Future-Ready Operations

After implementing LegalSifter Review, the team cut their time needed for initial contract review by over 70%. Total contract completion times were reduced by 20%, accelerating project progress while maintaining attention to detail and compliance. Furthermore, each manager handled 30% more contracts annually, demonstrating LegalSifter's AI technology's role in increasing productivity. LegalSifter also streamlined operations by reducing the time required for training and onboarding. Remarkably, all these gains were achieved without the need to expand the team.

The New Standard in Sponsored Research Agreement Reviews

The shift from being overwhelmed to having everything under control shows how powerful LegalSifter's advanced AI technology and expertise can be. If you're dealing with tough contract management issues, think about how LegalSifter could make a big difference for you, just like it did for this university. Now's the time to embrace change and turn your contract operations troubles into success stories.

See how LegalSifter can change the way you handle sponsored research agreements and make your team more efficient by scheduling a demo today.



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