my suggestion would be to have editable "visual templates" (e.g. in PowerPoint) in use already during negotiation. Depending on the topic, they could be owned by business or legal negotiators. You can use these in presentations and outside of contract documents to facilitate reaching the meeting of the minds about key topics for your relationship/transaction, and modify them collaboratively with the client. At the end, you just add the static version of the diagram (exported e.g. as jpg or png) to the contract, like a snapshop documenting what was agreed together.
In order to minimize effort, create negotiable visualizations only for topics that are crucial and would actually benefit from increased clarity and shared understanding.
If you want an example of such a use case, you may want to have a look at this article that appeared on JSCAN (it is part of your IACCM Membership): journals.sagepub.com/doi/full/10.1177/2055563616669739
Let me know if this helps, and feel free to reach out again!
• Passera Design
just wondering if you would be willing and able to submit your example on the IACCM Contract Design Pattern Library (even in a partial/edited/anonymized form if you so wish). We have a section on timelines, and your example would be in good company: contract-design.iaccm.com/timeline
Submissions can be made here: contract-design.iaccm.com/contribute
I am available for any question regarding the submission and publishing process. :)
• Novo Nordisk
Thanks Stefania, very practical suggestion! I found the article and look forward to reading it.
I like this idea. 15 years ago(!) a colleague tried to introduce 'plain English' contracts to a UK Aerospace manufacturer. It had some success, but ultimately didn't take hold. I am guilty of saying "execute" instead of "sign" and "pursuant to" instead of, er, well nothing really.
Highly appreciated initiative. Increasing the user friendliness of contracts are, in my view, not prioritized. But you are up against a tradition and practice that is hard to change, even through graphic illustrations are proven to have multiple benefits.
Camilla Andersen gave a presentation on Comic Contracts in the last local DK IACCM meeting facilitated by Ramboll. Where you place yourself in the scale of using graphics (visulisations supporting the text or a full blown comic contract) may depend on the case, audience and "environment" you are operating in..
Camilla also provided this link: www.comicbookcontracts.com/
I´d strongly encourage you to raise this question also within the IACCM technology network, which is a micro-community, where you will be able to get insights to new trends in this specific field and where I am sure you´ll have the opportunity to share ideas regarding the topic you have brought:
Also, please check our library: www.iaccm.com/resources/ where, you will find some articles about 'escrow agreements' for the software arena and other topics associated with risk management in the hardware world as well. By analogy you will explore ideas regarding hardware coming from best practices and escrow programs with the goal of risk mitigation
Hi Michelle - saw your post. For hardware: having a refresh plan with your supplier following a bit of a mutual benchmark, to see how best to provision for your upcoming capacity needs, might give some assurance. For services or subscriptions-based tech: having a documented 'cookbook' of key players and tech needed to recreate the service, including a list of any solutions 'not commercially available' or not easily re-purchased in Canada updated, might also be helpful to gage the difficulty of transitioning off your current tech,if needs be.
Those two governance-type processes, along with the typical supplier obligation to reasonably cooperate with any successor and to provide some mutually-agreed orderly termination assistance, might serve you well (outside escrow for software). Hope that offers some ideas...good luck. Cheers, Robin
You should contact Rob Waller, he did some great work for us in this vein as well as simplifying complex contract legal language for use in Term Contracts or MSA's.
• Health Quest
Thank you, Gary, will do! I did check out the link you provided and definitely liked what I saw. It is exciting to know that there are folks out there who believe in revamping and freshening up the way we do business on paper.
Fully agree with you. We also follow a standard contract briefing template and prepare contract summaries for the delivery and business teams. They dont have to go through the legal T&Cs and get a contract briefing in a simple and plain language.
Indeed. For example, there are consultants and researchers working on Contract visualizations. I happened to work on such developments for our company, and found it useful in governing the contractual activities of large and complex infrastructure proejcts.