With regard to technology, Docusign and others have fairly secure systems in place to ensure the integrity of e-signature contracts. Some organisations, however, still try to arrange in person signings where possible. In these circumstances, though, you will need to ensure that all signed contracts are stored safely and in a searchable repository as finding signed contracts remains a perennial problem for many who do not have comprehensive document repositories deployed.
With regard to your second question, many organisations have their legal functions handle the contract signature process. The larger the organisation, however, the more impractical such a set up can often be, as there are just not enough resources. Many organisations still have the sales function handling the signature process. There should be strict guidelines and processes in place to help ensure integrity and to prevent mistakes such as wrong versions being signed etc.
I thought Getting Past No was very good as well as Getting to Yes.
All the best
• Vaisala Inc.
Balkan Odyssey by David Owen. Terrific example of failed negotiation, which we can learn from as well.
Jennifer - The Magic Pudding by Norman Lindsay is always a good one for relationships and negotiation. For example, when Bunyip Bluegum met Bill Barnacle and Sam Sawnoff eating from the Magic Pudding and asked 'Pardon me,' he said, raising his hat, 'but am I right in
supposing that this is a steak-and-kidney pudding?' 'At present it is,' said Bill Barnacle. 'It smells delightful,' said Bunyip Bluegum...Bunyip Bluegum was too much of a gentleman to invite himself to lunch, but he said carelessly, 'Am I right in supposing that there are onions in this pudding?' Before Bill could reply, a thick, angry voice came out of the pudding, saying-
'Onions, bunions, corns and crabs,
Whiskers, wheels and hansom cabs,
Beef and bottles, beer and bones,
Give him a feed and end his groans.'
'Albert, Albert,' said Bill to the Puddin', 'where's your manners?' 'Where's yours?' said the Puddin' rudely, 'guzzling away there, and never so much as offering this stranger a slice.' 'There you are,' said Bill. 'There's nothing this Puddin' enjoys more than offering slices of himself to strangers.'
'How very polite of him,' said Bunyip, but the Puddin' replied loudly- 'Politeness be sugared, politeness be hanged, Politeness be jumbled and tumbled and banged. It's simply a matter of putting on pace. Politeness has nothing to do with the case.' Negotiation is equally about how we share the pudding and generating pace in pursuit of our objectives, and never just about politeness.
I recommend this book:
Getting More: How to Negotiate to Achieve Your Goals in the Real World
by Stuart Diamond
New International Technology Co.
I've seen this type of requests many times even for large and strategic deals. This type of ask is primarily seen in Govt sponsored deals. One of the reason for such ask is to restrict Supplier's mark-up and for transparency, gain share etc. I think you should first ask Customer why they would like to see Supplier's internal costs. Are they going to compensate the Supplier if Supplier can't achieve the estimated margin?
If they are looking for transparency, you can submit the break-up of your Charges (Y-o-Y/M-o-M, FTE cost, Non FTE cost, break up of Non FTE costs etc.) and also the Y-o-Y resource loading (FTE) if that helps. For submission, you can fill in the relevant portions of the Price Form where Charge needs to be mentioned leaving cost details blank and add assumption that you would like to initiate the discussion on cost details in the next phase. Hope they will not disqualify you for not providing the cost details. I believe if your price is competitive and solution helps Customer achieve their business goals then definitely Customer will shortlist you for the next round unless its a Govt sponsored deal and it is one of the qualifying criteria to submit the cost details.
In principle, your response sounds correct. Altering the terms unilaterally after award may indeed represent a material change, though of course you will need to make a prompt assessment of the nature and impact of the changes.
From your post, I get the impression that the Ts&cs are being driven by the consultant - but is that the case? Does the owner mandate the 'standard' and have they made the alterations - perhaps a result of current market conditions and experiences? Understanding the source and rationale behind the changes may be important in determining how and where you push back.
Of course you may want to revert on specific impact - for example, does this affect your price or delivery commitments? You may also want to negotiate some of the altered terms - for example, if risk allocation has shifted. But another response could be to take the position that this opens up more general negotiation and that if there are terms they want to change, you also have some changes you'd like made.
If these alterations were inspired by the consultant, they may back down because they will perhaps not want to explain to their client why this delay is occurring (especially if they made a mistake in the initial terms that were attached). But if the origin is the customer, you may need to be more cautious, especially if you do not have an existing or strong relationship.
Both parties should have an interest in ensuring that change requests are handled in a timely manner. Sometimes customers try to leave this unspecified because that way they can ignore any change which may cause an increase in time or cost.
Being too specific on a number of days can also be problematic because the nature of the change may vary in its complexity. There are several ways you might approach this:
1. Specify a number of days within which the change must be acknowledged and a date for resolution agreed, with a proviso that the resolution must be within a period no longer than x days or the change will be deemed effective.
2. Specify that all changes take effect 7 days from notification unless the other party makes a counter-proposal within that period.
3. Categorise changes into, say, three different classes, probably based on the nature and complexity of the change. Class one might have a requirement to resolve within 7 days, class 2 within 30 days and class 3 to be agreed case by case between the parties.
You may also want to consider a provision related to the consequences of failing to agree a change in a reasonable or specified period. For example, does the change simply become effective? Or does failure to agree result in permissible delay or suspension of work / service? Perhaps you want a clearly defined escalation process to support resolution; this could include referral to an independent expert to resolve disagreement.
I hope these ideas help!
• TRADING AND AGENCY LTD
The Standard language in Oil & Gas Contracts is that no Change shall be performed unless executed through a Change Order (CO). However, in order to allow for events where Parties are unable to agree on a Change, Clients include a provision in the Contract to issue either an Instruction to Proceed (ITP) or a Disputed Change/Variation Order which obligates the Contractor to perform first and negotiate later. Still, it is worthwhile to include a maximum response time which obligates the Client to acknowledge Contractor's Change Request either by issuing a CO or ITP within the agreed timeframe.
Thanks for your post. I've got extensive experience of joint-ventures (another form of legal structure used to combine resources, talents, or skills with another entity that share many similarities with Partnerships) and would be happy to chat more, but I'm confident there are members out there who have direct experience of partnerships too. In the meantime, it might be worth scanning our resource library for articles that you may find useful; particularly:
1) Procurement Partnership Charter Template www.iaccm.com/resources/ 2) Partnership Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) www.iaccm.com/resources/ 3) Routes to market - partnerships, alliances, and distribution and sourcing options www.iaccm.com/resources/
P.S. You can contact me at email@example.com
I'd be happy to join a call as well. 'Partnerships' tend to take multiple forms and it is key to be clear about the goals and benefits sought from such an approach. It represents a significant shift in the balance of risk between the parties and also in the implications for ongoing management of the relationship.
I suppose that a little more around the type of printers, and what maintenance means, that would be helpful. Because if they are all simple desk printers that cost $75 new, then the cost of maintaining them is twice the cost of replacing them all.
Does the maintenance contract include ink? That will change the value as well.
• Rock Central, LLC
its a mix of 500 MFDs, 1000 high volume table top printers, and about 300 desktop printer. This does not include what we pay for mono and color clicks.