Contract Design Benchmark Assessment

The IACCM Contract Design Benchmark Assessment promotes the creation of clear and easy to use contracts.

People and companies want to buy from businesses that make it simple and easy and sellers want to close deals fast. Contract documents affect both of these areas – the perception of being easy to work with and the speed it takes to execute a contract.

IACCM now offers an analysis of your contracts by knowledgeable and innovative thinkers in the world of contracts. This service evaluates your contract templates to demonstrate to your clients, stakeholders and vendors that your agreements have been objectively assessed for appropriateness and ease of use.

Through various market tests, IACCM has found that the most effective contracts enhance the users' performance in finding and understanding information which in turn elicits a positive experiential reaction. These contracts contain plain and clear language, a concise approach, an easy to follow structure and helpful reading aids. Accordingly, IACCM's team of experts evaluates each contract template based upon the following five major areas:

  1. Language Criteria: How understandable are the words in your contract?
  2. Design Criteria: Does the design make the contract structure clear and easy to read?
  3. Relationship Criteria: How far does your document go to help cultivate a positive relationship among the contracting parties?
  4. Content Criteria: What is your content and is it organized to deliver your document's purpose?
  5. Balance: Do the terms of your contract generate a sense of collaboration and trust?


The price for the assessment that includes the evaluation and feedback is based upon the size and number of documents in the evaluation. The minimum cost is $3000 for evaluation and feedback for one template of up to 10 pages in 11 pt font, and indicatively, the charge for larger documents increases by approximately $1,500 for each 10 pages to be reviewed. IACCM will provide a proposal for your contract template that reflects the number and complexity of documents that requires your approval prior to commencing the assessment.

Accordingly, IACCM will need a soft copy of the final version of the contract template or group of templates to be assessed. We will also need to know if there are any associated documents (e.g., service level agreements, product descriptions, etc.) that are typically referenced or attached in the agreement and copies of these ancillary documents may be required.

Recognizing Achievement

Subject to meeting the qualifying criteria, you can apply for the IACCM Contract Design Award. Successful applicants can use the IACCM Contract Design Award badge and credibly market the use of their agreement for business purposes.

There are three Award levels – 3, 4 and 5 Star – for qualifying documents that meet our criteria for approval.

Contract Design Award - 3 star The 3 Star Award indicates that the template meets 3 of the 5 criteria

For those documents that exceed our high Excellence Award standard, we have two additional levels of achievement available albeit more of a challenge to obtain:

Contract Design Award - 4 star The 4 Star Award level indicates that the template meets 4 of the 5 criteria
Contract Design Award - 5 star The 5 Star Award level indicates that the template meets all 5 criteria

Our evaluation includes insight into your templates, general recommendations for improvement and rationale for the Award earned. The right to use the IACCM logo with the associated Award level number of stars is limited for a period of 3 years in light of continuous innovation and emerging business requirements in today’s global economy but may be renewed through subsequent evaluation.

  • It demonstrates to clients your commitment to ease of doing business
  • It has potential to reduce administrative time negotiating and rewording your contracts
  • It encourages the use of contracts as a positive tool supporting collaborative relationships
  • It may reduce disputes caused by lack of clarity in terms
  • It tackles the problem that difficult to understand contracts result in business risks - for example: slowing down the implementation process and more likely to be ‘consigned to the drawer’ where they are either ignored or misinterpreted

The adjudication process by our objective team of academic and subject matter experts includes a swift and secure assessment of your contract templates which may result in a Contract Design Award. The assessment does not involve a peer review nor visibility to other members of our IACCM community. It is not a legal review; our Award does not imply approval of specific terms and conditions, their integrity or enforceability. All information is maintained under strict confidentiality.

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The IACCM Contract Design Assessment makes use of benchmarking criteria © Rob Waller / The Simplification Centre, under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/.