How to Determine the Real "Drop Dead Date" in a Negotiation

How to Determine the Real "Drop Dead Date" in a Negotiation

We live in an age where you have to be very careful where you're getting your information from. 

Take nothing for granted. Question everything. And always consider the source. 

I'm not just talking about politics. This is just as true at work.

For executives who are involved in high stakes supplier negotiations, it can be really tricky to discern the "fake news" from the "truth".

Drop dead dates are a great example. 

Never Let Mainframe Suppliers Manage ISV Contracts

Never Let Mainframe Suppliers Manage ISV Contracts

I get really excited when a client tells me that their mainframe supplier manages all their Independent Software Vendor (ISV) contracts. 

As consultants, my team and I always find the biggest savings opportunities with mainframe ISVs. We were once able to save a client over $2 million in administrative fees that their service provider had buried into a five year agreement to do nothing more than to receive and pay invoices.

Why You Should Always Include Acceptance Criteria in Software Agreements

Why You Should Always Include Acceptance Criteria in Software Agreements

Have you ever been through an SAP or Oracle implementation?

How long did the supplier say it would take? Usually around 12 to 14 months.

How long did it actually take? Maybe 24 months? Or is it still going on with no end in sight?

Now here's the more painful question.

Has an ERP implementation ever gone over budget?

My guess is every single time. 

There are many possible reasons for that. But in our experience, most of the time it's because the client didn't agree on clear acceptance criteria with the software vendor. 

How to Turn a Software Maintenance Renewal into a Negotiation Opportunity

How to Turn a Software Maintenance Renewal into a Negotiation Opportunity

Everyone knows what to do when a software maintenance renewal invoice comes across your desk.

  1. Check if you're still using the software
  2. Check if the invoice references a purchase order
  3. Check if there's a cap on annual increases in the contract

If everything looks to be in order, you can go ahead and process the invoice, right?

Wrong.

Maintenance renewals are the perfect time to look for contract negotiation opportunities. But you have to know what you're looking for. 

In this week's video, we'll talk about how you can discover opportunities for renegotiation while processing a routine maintenance renewal invoice. 

Why You Should Never Take Software Supplier Deadlines Seriously

Why You Should Never Take Software Supplier Deadlines Seriously

Have you ever had a software supplier breathing down your neck to get a deal done?

They find all kinds of ways to justify the urgency. I'm convinced there are people on their team whose sole job is to manufacture bogus deadlines and make them sound real.

Sometimes, the urgency gets the better of us and we make concessions that we shouldn't make, in the interest of getting a deal done before the "drop dead date".

But that's a huge mistake. Because we all know supplier deadlines are meant to serve the supplier's interests, not yours. 

In this week's video, I'll show you the simple question you can use to push back on a supplier's deadline. In my experience, asking this question almost always makes the supplier's deadline irrelevant.

Why Stakeholders Are More Important than Suppliers in Software Negotiations

Why Stakeholders Are More Important than Suppliers in Software Negotiations

I've never been much of a soccer fan. There's just not enough scoring and body checking involved to keep me interested for 90 minutes. 

But I have to admit, I have tremendous respect for soccer players. Unlike other sports, soccer is truly a team game. Everyone on the team has to contribute for the team to win. You'll find the odd superstar here and there. But even then, no single player can carry a team on his or her back.

Software negotiations are very similar. I've been in my fair share of negotiations before. And every time we've "lost", it was because our team wasn't playing together, even if we had a superstar in our ranks.

In this video, I'm going to share with you the first essential rule of software negotiations: "Put stakeholders before suppliers." This is the first instalment in a brand new video series on software negotiations. Stay tuned for more!

How to Identify Software Savings Without Relying on Price Reductions

OneView's President & CEO, Mohammed Faridy, was recently interviewed by Philip Ideson from Art of Procurement. In the interview, Mohammed shares the step by step process OneView uses to help clients identify and realize cost savings from software. 

Tune in to learn:

  • The #1 mistake that prevents Procurement organizations from discovering software savings
  • The four step process you can use to identify software cost savings in any organization
  • How to prioritize which software providers to review and which are too small

4 Legal Clauses You Must Negotiate (Even If You’re Not a Lawyer)

“I’m not a lawyer, so I’ll let the legal team deal with it.”

It’s a common excuse I hear from procurement professionals for not dealing with the complicated legal terms in a contract they’re negotiating.

This may be one of the main reasons procurement gets sidelined in negotiations, instead of taking the lead. If you’re unable to negotiate on behalf of everyone at your organization, what’s the point?

That’s why over the past few weeks I’ve been covering some of key legal terms in contracts and how to use them to your advantage in negotiations.

Looking to level up your negotiations skills? Check out the videos below:

Never Leave the Acceptance Process Out of Your Payment Terms

Always Define Deliverables and Acceptance Process

Have you ever had a supplier send you an invoice based on a payment schedule and a statement of work, but had no way of knowing if that work was ever completed - or if the deliverables were to the satisfaction of your business unit?

If your statement of work didn’t have clearly defined deliverables or an acceptance process for those deliverables, then the chances are there isn’t much you could about it – except pay the invoice and hope they did a good job.

But it should never be that way with professional services.

Any time you negotiate a statement of work with a professional services provider - whether it’s for a fixed-cost engagement or time and materials - you should always have clearly defined deliverables with milestones, an acceptance process for each deliverable, and payment terms tied to the acceptance of those deliverables.