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As we teach in our online class, “Savings Strategy Development,” a best practice is to include your contract terms and conditions with your RFP/tender. This prevents delays later in the process and difficult negotiations with suppliers who feel they have already won your business.

However, some suppliers may see this as an invitation to take exception to your terms as part of their proposal. How can you avoid this becoming a mess?


Just build in degree of acceptance of your terms and conditions as one of the criteria for award, right alongside price, lead time, etc. If you use a “risk” criterion as part of a weighted average supplier scorecard in ranking suppliers, acceptance of your terms and conditions could be factored into that risk score.

Let’s face it. Negotiating terms and conditions rather than using your standard terms takes time, costs your organization money, and can expose your organization to more risk. The more willing a supplier is to work with your standard terms and conditions, the more favorably evaluated they should be.

Charles Dominick, SPSM, SPSM2, SPSM3

Charles Dominick, SPSM, SPSM2, SPSM3 is an internationally-recognized business expert, legendary procurement thought leader, award-winning entrepreneur, and provocative blogger. Charles founded the Next Level Purchasing Association in 2000, oversaw its incredible growth, and successfully led the organization to its acquisition by the Certitrek Group in 2016. He continues to blog and provide advisory services for the NLPA on a part-time basis as he incubates his upcoming business innovations. Charles is also the co-author of the wildly popular, groundbreaking book, "The Procurement Game Plan: Winning Strategies & Techniques For Supply Management Professionals."

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