Intermediate Courses

Legal Aspects of Establishing and Managing Contracts

This workshop aims to equip participants with awareness of those aspects of contract law that are relevant to contract managers and people responsible for putting contracts in place with suppliers.


This workshop explores both the principles of contract law and their application to practical situations faced by contract managers.

This course is designed for:

The workshop will benefit those who undertake contract management or establish contracts with suppliers as part of their duties – in particular people who are new to contract management or sourcing, or those who require a ‘refresher’.

Course structure

There will be pre- and post-workshop activities totalling about 90 minutes additional workload, as the workshop is founded upon 70/20/10 principles. The pre-workshop activity will stimulate thought about the terms that appear in contracts and about how to read a contract. The workshop will be led by an experienced facilitator, and will include nine sessions involving exercises, case studies, presentations and facilitated discussions. The post-workshop activity will seek to reinforce the learning and to maximise the transfer of learning to the workplace.

Benefits of attending

Attendance will help raise awareness of the legal framework for establishing and managing contracts and the principles and issues raised by poor or nonperformance.

As well as this participants will gain three keybenefits from attending:

  1. More appreciation of the legal context of contract management
  2. More awareness of how contract managers may deal with poor or non-performance
  3. Less likelihood of the contract manager unintentionally exposing their organisation to risk of litigation

Key learning outcomes

By the end of the workshop participants will be able to:

  1. Describe the principles of contract formation and relate that to the procurement process
  2. Identify a selection of terms found in contracts and describe their significance in the event of poor performance causing breach of the contract
  3. Describe the circumstances and processes appropriate to contract termination and relate the principles to their own contracts
  4. Describe alternative ways of resolving disputes other than litigation or termination


Course Content


1. Introduction and types of contract

  • Why contracts are important
  • Examples of types of contractual agreements
  • Selecting the right contract to use (value risk approach)

2. Basics of contract law

  • Offer and acceptance
  • Other key essentials to form a contract
  • Rights and obligations of the parties
  • Variation by conduct

3. Contract formation in practice

  • The significance of bid documents
  • Process contracts and implications for buyers
  • Pre-contractual representation and communication
  • Letters of intent
  • Non-binding ‘agreements’ (e.g. MOU’s, Heads of Agreement)

4. Types of contract terms

  • Express and implied terms
  • Conditions and warranties
  • Recognising different types of terms in practice

5. When is poor performance a ‘breach of contract’?

  • What service levels are defined in the contract?
  • Distinguishing issues from more serious problems
  • Giving the supplier notice of poor performance

6. Remedies for breach of contract

  • Completion of the contract; “specific performance”
  • Types of damages
  • Termination

7. What might be grounds for contract termination?

  • Breach of a condition
  • What is reasonable notice?
  • Escalation and involving other stakeholders

8. Escalation and dispute resolution processes

  • The escalation sequence
  • When and how to escalate
  • Exploration of the alternatives to litigation

9. Contracts as part of risk management

  • Assigning responsibility for risk management
  • Scaling and managing residual risk
  • Reducing the likelihood of contractual problems



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