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Innovation In Contracting: Is It Happening?

September 18, 2012

The pressure for increased innovation in contracting and contract practices continues to grow. Business cannot afford to be constrained by slow, out-dated processes and unresponsive or inflexible terms and conditions. Increasingly, they must consider ways in which contract and commercial policies can bestow competitive advantage, both strategically and operationally.

But there are questions in many minds over whether this need is translating into action; and if so, where are the examples, who are the leaders?

It was an understanding of these questions that led IACCM earlier this year to initiate a series of awards for innovation in contracting and commercial management. The winners will be announced at the IACCM Americas Conference in Houston, Texas in October. When the program was first announced, there was a level of cynicism about whether it would attract entries. There was a feeling that perhaps there was little innovation occuring, or that those who had good ideas would not wish to share them.

That cynicism has been dispelled by both the quality and quantity of entries received. When the submission date closed this last Sunday, there were 42 entrants, representing organizations large and small, from around the world. They came from legal, contract management and sourcing organizations, each anxious to share its achievements and gain recognition for the contribution it is making. Many top international corporations are among those who have decided to participate. And our panel of judges faces a difficult process in determining who the winners will be. 

This contest is excellent news for all who are involved in the world of contracting and commercial management. It is yet another step in building recognition of their work and inspiring the entire community in a belief of its value. The results will be featured through interviews, articles and webinars over the coming weeks, generating opportunities for increased executive awareness and understanding of the value to be gained from improved approaches to contracting and commercial practices.

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