There are a number of options in the US, and those options range from law firms to consultancies to purely training firms. Could you please be more specific on the general location, as well as the type of topics you are looking to address - commercial, IP/technological, legal, operational?
The IACCM Top Terms and 10 Pitfalls research offer a whole new perspective on these repeating conversations. Are they using particular standard documents or are you seeing a whole range of idifferent versions?
Regretfully they are mostly very different. Even the customer's who use the same form, typically alter the document slightly from project to project. We have experimented using both Word and Adobe Acrobat to "compare" documents but had very limited success with that.
• CMS Group, Inc.
My company has a program (CAT - Contract Analysis Tool) that reads all Microsoft Word and Excel contract documents and extracts the words or phrases you specify to find, and any date references. It can process upwards of 100 documents in 30 minutes and results are easy to filter and view. The contract documents with those keywords are highlighted and indexed for hyperlinks from the excel results file. It's an application using Excel.
If anyone has an interest in having a contract analysis performed, or interested in subscribing or licensing this application please contact me.
• Sysintellects LLC
I trust you are doing fine.We would be happy,if you could share your contact details so that i can inbox you the same.
Thanks Kent for your caring - its very interesting to view how the Contract could be managed in other companies and compare with current process and so on we able to adapt and refine the process. Thanks for your offer i believe it would be a great help.
• Qatar Petroleum
We have similar situation when vendors/suppliers/bidders propose deviations/exceptions to our standard terms and conditions. Legal department propose the alternate text followed by exhausting and long winded discussions between both parties reaching no where. I would like to know the items that end in stale mate and those which get resolved by mutually agreed alternate text. Are you using standard terms and conditions or they propose their own terms and conditions for your review and acceptance? Do you have same set of builders participating in the bidding process? If yes, you can have a mutually agreed terms and conditions which can be used in all future contracts. This will prevent delays.
Hi, you don't specifically say what kind of IT contracts, but here is a good one related to software licensing and software-as-a-service (SAAS).
We offer a training "Opstellen en beoordelen van IT contracten" (Drafting and reviewing IT contracts), but it is in Dutch and given in the Netherlands (I don't know if this is an option for you).
itcontracten.heliview.nl/ (we can offer a discount for our relations)
• NTT DATA
One of the best ways to get this training is to get IACCM Contract certification. It was well worth the investment.
This is one of messages which recently use to turn up in Spanish. Is IACCM practicing diversity ? What do you recommend for colleagues like me whose command of Spanish language is not sufficient to understand the contents of this message. Will IACCM provide a translation service ? What about colleagues who would prefer to communicate in Arab or Chinese ? Can someone help me how to deal with messages whose content I cannot understand ? Ignore them ?
Best regards Thomas
Pablo does translate IACCM messages into Spanish, his native tongue and is the local contact for his country. He does this as a service to his local members. Other Advisory Council members, and individuals around the world are welcome to do the same if they believe it will help their fellow members.
Hi I did Masters of Science in Commercial Management at the University of Manchester, UK. The course leader was David Lowe. He published a book on the subject quite recently so I think it is still going strong. Highly recommended.
• Siemens Ltd
DIU DRESDEN INTERNATIONAL UNIVERSITY is starting in 2015 an MBA „International Commercial & Contract Management'
You might want to start with Suzanne Birch at IACCM Resourcing email@example.com. Also, you can post your resume on the IACCM Job Post page under the resource tab. Good luck!
P.S. Next week Suzanne Birch will be hosting a Women's Networking Group webinar on 'Marketing Yourself through Social Media.' You might want to sign up for it. Check out the events calendar.
• Phillips 66
You might want to check with Global Resources depending on what you want to do. They do a lot of placement of professionals into Corproate settings as consultants. My company has used them and I know peopel that work for them.
Hi Lawal, you raise a question that is frequently asked and the answer is it depends. In some organizations the titles are used interchangeably but in others they very different roles. Not to further add to the confusion but we are seeing a new role - the Commercial Excellence professional - emerge.
You might find Tim Cummin's recent blog on this topic useful:
I am seeing the terms used interchangeably. If I was picking a title for a job now in 2015, as "commercial excellence" is becoming a discussion point, I would pick Commercial Manager as having an implication of a greater opportunity to influence and innovate across a broader spectrum of the contract management lifecycle.
• Australian Taxation Office
I much prefer the title "Commercial Manager" and to actually be a commercial manager rather than a contract manager. Many people though (not me!) do use the titles as meaning the same thing. To me, they describe very different disciplines. An example - some time ago I had discussions with our telecommunications provider about the charge (fixed) for putting a fibre link into our buildings. The contract made it the same price, whether we wanted a single lead-in or a dual lead-in (they also had to be in physically diverse paths). My view was that the contract was very clear. However, the provider was able to demonstrate quite clearly that they were barely covering their costs for a single lead-in, and actually losing money for dual lead-ins. The 'contract manager' view would likely be "well, the contract is clear"; whereas the broader 'commercial manager' (much more commercially savvy) view was "OK, the contract is clear, but it also clearly doesn't make any sense and we need to fix that to keep our relationship on a proper commercial basis". To my mind, taking the broader commercial view tends to promote much better commercial relationships than the narrower "contract view"...
Mike, good example. Not to put words into your mouth but do you believe Commercial Managers are better at using business judgment? In your example it sounds like contract managers are responsible for 'enforcing' the contract -- a compliance role vs. a business relationship role.
• Raytheon Systems Limited
Working in the defence industry, we tend to use the term 'commercial' manager as this aligns to terminology used by UK MoD. Our colleagues in the US call the same people 'contracts' managers so at least in our case the terms are used interchangeably.
• International Health and Medical Services
I must admit to significant confusion over the terms (driven, I suspect, by limited professional recognition for either). My current employer carries the two roles and the functions are distinctly different. The Commercial Manager ensures an optimal commercial outcome (including during negotiations) whereas the Contract Manager has responsibility across compliance (corporate and statutory), risk, contract approval (the corporate agreement to be legally bound), and legal matters: In other words (if we were to put academic/professional qualifications behind both roles) the Commercial Manager would be a CPA/CA whereas the Contract Manager would be trained in Law.
In my humble opinion, because there is no 'yardstick' for what a Commercial Manager or Contract Manager does (that is, it is employer-dependent) I'm sure that the appropriateness of the title would be determined by the job description.
In my company, all contract commercials are handled (negotiated) by the Sourcing organization. They are then handed off to the Contracting Center of Excellence to be incorporated into the contract. The Contracting Center of Excellence drafts and negotiates the contract. The folks in the Contracting CoE are not all lawyers. However, lawyers are required to review and bless each contract prior to execution (and along the way, as needed).
Bryan Johnson, Yale University, and I are in the process of moving forward on the mentoring initiative with IACCM. You will be seeing articles on mentoring, there will be an "Ask the Expert" segment, as well as, a constant communication of new and innovative ideas in mentoring to increase the knowledge and skills of the contract management discipline.
• Learn and Change
But please let's remember mentors are far more than being a friendly voice who, for example gives career advice.
1) Mentors need training guidance on the process variables
2) The on-going mentoring process needs managing.
If not then there is a 80% failure rate.
How do I know = experience with mentoring schemes, some of which, I had to choose to withdraw from before they failed (and they did, despite the initial "good" intentions)
For contract management, I would focus on two major streams of growth - training in what I would call "hard" knowledge (e.g. regulations, laws, procurement methodologies) and "soft" knowledge (e.g. negotiation skills acquired over time, best practices, and management skills). Ideally you would be guided in both areas. I think the latter stream is tougher to achieve.
• Yale University
Thank you for your input. I agree that the "soft" knowledge is an area that guidance needs to be provided as it is easier to guide with the "hard" knowledge. I thank you for your input on Mentoring systems.
• First-Citizens Bank & Trust Company
I agree with Edward's approach. The hard knowledge can be achieved throught IACCM certification and continuing education through webinars and conferences. The soft knowledge can be achieved through job shadowing and approaching complicated negotiations with a first chair/ second chair strategy where the mentee acts as the second chair and can learn from the senior experienced person (first chair) during the negotiations (how to plan, how to do the negotiation, how to involve the appropriate stakeholders etc). I have used the first chair/ second chair approach successfully for a few years and have gotten great results.
• Yale University
I like the first chair/second chair approach but you are assuming the Mentor/Mentee are working for the same company (unless you are conducting say virtual training). It would appear that the soft skills would need to be the focus of any mentoring program, so vetting potential Mentor's becomes all the more important. I appreciate your feedback.
• Hewlett-Packard Company
A friend and former boss now works at AT&T, which has a great mentoring program. She has been mentored by some very high level people over the past few years. I don't think it's incredibly formal, but I know that they do schedule regular sessions and also rotate through mentors. Through her experience in the program, she knows which areas in which she needs to gain experience in order to get to the upper management layer. I think it's important to include a real discussion of desired outcomes. At HP, we have different ways to access other expertise, but at least in the legal group we have a very clear mandate to push ourselves by learning about new areas. Some of us are given the opportunity to be designated resources in certain areas in order to improve our overall outcomes and efficiency. I am responsible to identify ways to gain more information and experience in my assigned areas. Our goal is to minimize the number of cycles we spin when addressing these recurring issues. Above all, being a Silicon Valley company, we are encouraged to pick up the phone and reach out to the formal experts in the department should we want to gain experience in new areas. These examples really do require a cultural dynamic of openness and a desire for self improvement. The Office of the General Counsel at HP literally has a mandate from our GC to work toward becoming the best corporate legal department anywhere. Obviously that's a very tough standard, but it does keep us on our toes.