“I’d like to tell you if you are careful in drafting an outsourcing contract, you can avoid all disagreements. But they’re inevitable,” says Daniel Masur, partner in charge of the Washington, D.C. office of law firm Mayer Brown. “Given the corrosive impact of accumulating disputes on the relationship and the impact on the business—both the business of the client and the business of the supplier — it’s extremely important to have effective ways to deal with them. However, there are several steps outsourcing buyers can take during the contract negotiation and drafting process that will make dispute resolution simpler, quicker, and less costly down the line”.
All these steps, addressed by Masur are covered in Leadmark’s method and tooling.
Follow these steps when negotiating your IT services contract to reduce the impact of disagreements on your business.
1. Negotiate a clear, comprehensive outsourcing contract
2. Define a customized dispute resolution process
3. Create leverage (in case things go wrong)
4. Put it all in writing
5. Collect – and redeem – IOUs
6. Maintain clear definition of authority
7. Include an accelerated dispute resolution clause