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Commercial themes for 2019

December 13, 2018
IACCM today announced key themes for contract and commercial management in 2019. These are based on global market observations and interaction with IACCM members from every industry. They represent the areas that are increasingly critical to the role and value delivered by commercial and contracting functions.

Creating Value Through Change: Contract economics, ethics & innovation

The efficiency with which trading relationships are formed and the value they deliver are critical to business success.  Commercial teams face unprecedented pressure to drive greater efficiency and value from their trading relationships – increase speed, reduce costs, raise effectiveness and contribution. At the same time, market and competitive pressures are driving the need for new commercial delivery models and forms of offering.

These demands can only be met through a structured change agenda, supported by the adoption of emerging technologies:

  • Contract economics:  leading businesses have started to address the overall cost of contracting and to understand its role in driving increased revenue and profit. Contract economics is about reducing the cost of contract creation; understanding the financial impacts of risk acceptance and allocation; and reducing the operational costs associated with managing contract performance, which includes tackling the sources of contract value erosion.
  • Ethics: businesses today face not only growing regulatory demands, but also increased social expectations regarding corporate behaviour and values. Contracts – and those responsible for them – play a major role in maintaining ethical standards. The quality and integrity of commitments to the market, ease and clarity of understanding, the honesty and transparency of commercial practices are key areas that enhance or undermine an organization’s reputation and ethical standing. Contract terms, processes and tools should be used to ensure business and supply chain integrity and to create a sustainable brand image.
  • Commercial innovation: new approaches, new ideas, new forms of relationship and commitment are increasingly key to business survival. The potential for change is often driven by technical invention, but its success in the market relies on commercial innovation. Business strategies and goals depend upon the ability to develop effective and efficient commercial models and delivery capabilities, with recent examples including the expansion of as-a-service, performance and outcome-based, shared benefit and relational agreements. The change agenda requires regular re-evaluation of market and competitive demands and trends, with consequent challenge and update of required policies, practices, processes and skills.

IACCM conferences

We are already working on our conference agendas, and have issued an invitation for interested speakers to send a synopsis if they would like to be considered as a speaker or panelist at one of the 2019 conferences. These will be held in Madrid (May), Sydney (July) and Phoenix (November).

Key topics (and potential case studies) related to the theme might include:

  • How changing demands affect the role of the function and individuals within it
  • How the function and individuals should be measured: practical examples of value delivery
  • The impact of market trends on what and how we negotiate and on governance
  • Implementation and use of new technologies
  • New skills and knowledge requirements and how they are best developed
  • Examples of innovative pricing, charging or performance management models
  • Experiences and case studies related to capital projects / infrastructure.

If you are are interested in speaking, you should contact, or to register for one of the conferences visit the events calendar at

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