The contract management module allows for registration, quotation, management, billing and retirement of contracts. The module support a comprehensive set of billing rules and calculations for a wide variety of contract types.
Contract administration handles the formal governance of the contract and changes to documentation during the life of the contract. These areas of contract management ensure that the everyday aspects of making the contract run effectively and efficiently are taken care off.
Definition of Contract Management
Contract management or contract administration is the management of contracts made with customers, vendors, partners, or employees. Contract management includes negotiating the terms and conditions in contracts and ensuring compliance with the terms and conditions, as well as documenting and agreeing on any changes or amendments that may arise during its implementation or execution. It can be summarized as the process of systematically and efficiently managing contract creation, execution, and analysis for the purpose of maximising financial and operational performance and minimising risk. Common commercial contracts include employment letters, sales invoices, purchase orders, and utility contracts. Complex contracts are often necessary for construction projects, goods or services that are highly regulated, goods or services with detailed technical specifications, intellectual property (IP) agreements, and international trade.
Contract Life cycle Management is applying technology to standardize, streamline and automate contract initiation, creation, negotiation, execution through to expiration. By doing so organisations are finding that they can cut contract cycle times by 50-80% with improved standardisation, control and visibility of their entire contract portfolio. These improvements lead to lower procurement costs, increased revenue, and reduced customer migration, improved compliance, lower risk and an overall gain in employee productivity.
The process of contract management
Contract management activities can be broadly grouped into three areas, which span the do, check and act stages. They are:
- Service delivery management
- Relationship management
- Contract administration
Steps of On-going contract management
On-going contract management involves the administration of a range of activities, which include:
· Contract maintenance and change control
· Charges and cost monitoring
· Ordering or call-off procedures
· Receipt and acceptance procedures
· Payment procedures
· Budget procedures
· Resource management and planning
· Operational and management reporting
· Asset management
Basic steps of Contract Management
- Create and setup of Organisation Base Setup
- Create and setup of managed Objects for use in Contract Management
- Create and setup of Event templates specifically for Contract Management
- Create and setup of a Specific Assets
- Create, setup and process of a new Contract
- Release contract by changing status to “In Progress”
- Create and process of Feedback
- Run Contract/Financial journal cycle
- Invoice Client (External)/Financial Journal (Internal)
Step 1 - Organisation Base Setup
Organisation structure covers many of the default integration parameters used downstream in 360° Strategic Asset management. By definition the organisation structure define all the rules how one organisation interfaces with another organisation within 360° Strategic Asset management, as well as how the stock reservation, billing, financial accounting, etc. will be done for a certain organisation or organisation unit.
It is also important to setup physical locations in which an organisation is located. In principle it is possible for an organisation to be distributed across various physical locations. If AX Integration is on the Locations will be setup in Stock and Warehouse Management Module of standard AX.
Within the organisation structure functionality, the focus is on maintenance, service requests, equipment/operations management, contract management and the organisation allocation is driven by the organisational responsibility. All maintenance, operational and contract events within 360° Strategic Asset management are related to a 360° Strategic Asset management Organisation. These events must be allocated to an organisation and the organisation “supply” a vast amount of the defaults used in the creation of a new event.
The following base setup functionalities should be identified and done as pre-requisites for the major processes as part of the optimal use of 360° Strategic Asset management product.
- Create, define and setup status codes and sequences of each
- Create and define the Generic setup:
- Setup of number sequence (Part of Organisation Administration)
- Setup of general use information (Working Calendar, ERP integration, default service item)
- Setup infrastructure (Report Server and SMS Service)
- Setup integration (Integration properties for person, facility and support equipment)
- Setup of account information (General ledger accounts)
- Setup of journal names (Journal names in general ledger)
- Setup of project integration (Valid project groups in Project Management and Accounting)
- Setup of default accounting organisation (Valid organisation in Objects)
- Create and define base characteristics and characteristic groups
- Automatic process of application base data integration from standard AX:
- UOM Codes
- Resources (Product Master)
Definition of Base Setup
The 360° Strategic Asset management general base setup will be used as base configuration throughout the application and assist in determining whether or not the configuration will be necessary for your particular implementation. Ensure that you create a contract/rental organisation in the base setup.
For more create process detail of base setup process, refer back to
Step 2 - Managed Objects (Vehicles/Equipment/Property)
Create and Setup of a Transport Object
For more detail definition and setup of objects, refer back to
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Click here for the step by step -
The steps for the creation of objects are the same, but all objects must have the indicator ticked "Available on contracts" in order to use object for contract event templates, specific assets to be used on contract.
Step 3 - Setup Event Template for Contract
Event templates play a critical role in the Organisation and scheduling of materials, equipment and resources.
This function is used to define a generic Event Template in terms of identification, duration, costs, status, frequency, etc.
Events or standard contract lines must be defined for all tasks that are performed repetitively, for example a service that occurs on a monthly basis on the contract or that is standard on a contract cycle.
Defined Event Templates are used as a library of tasks, which facilitate uniform tasks for budgeting and task history analysis. It is also a means to do life cycle planning.
The Objectives are:
- To define and setup event definitions which will be used within an organisation
- To define and setup event types
- To understand why and how to define the create of event templates for an organisation
Definition Event Templates
An event template determines the basic composition for a contract task to be used on an object or service type and contains information about required resources, activities and organisations that can perform the task. Once established, the template can be called and recalled from the library of event templates) instead of the registration of every single task as and when required.
These defined tasks are used as standard templates to facilitate uniform tasks execution and task history analysis. It is also a means to do life cycle planning.
Setup of Event Definition
Event definition is used to define the setup of default event templates regarding any instance or occurrence of tasks. Contract events can be a specified condition/action and the commencement of default proceedings. A contract event can in principle be all the standard tasks that occur on the contract during the cycle period of the contract.
Every event can consist of a number of activities (procedure step). An event activity is an action to be performed by a person or the contract. Example of event activities for vehicle rental on a standard contract:
- Delivery of vehicle (Billing normally in advance and once off)
- Monthly rental of vehicle (Billing as agreed in contract)
- Monthly usage (kilometers) (Billing as agreed in contract)
- Collection of vehicle
When defining the event definition for contract planning, the contract type can be defined as one of following types or selected "Not Applicable":
- Long term rental
- Short term rental
- Full maintenance contract
- Preventative maintenance agreement
- Long term rental with full maintenance
- Long term rental with preventative maintenance agreement
- Used rental
The setup indicators, forced and fixed indicators are not applicable to contract event templates.
Setup of Event Object
After object assets are identified and the hierarchy or structure of each have been defined, it is essential that pre-determined events are then defined in order to maintain, optimise and fully utilise their equipment.
Industries will also need the capability not only to create and fulfill predetermined events but will also need the ability to create additional events pertaining to their physical assets which are of an Adhoc nature. (Adhoc is a Latin phrase which means "for this purpose", unscheduled.)
No matter the event, key information is required to ensure the events can happen successfully and in the most efficient manner as possible.
Event Object Tasks should be defined for all tasks that are performed repetitively. The latter can include service tasks (for example: insurance, monthly rental, monthly usage, delivery, collection) which occurs frequently.
For the explanation of the setup of event objects that are link to an event definition we will use the renting of a vehicle to a customer:
In the event definition task for a rental contract is setup of for example the creation of the rental of a vehicle event. This event has a number of actions against it that will define the standard service item lines.
With the creation of event objects more than one object (vehicle, etc.) can be linked to an event template (definition).
For more detail definition and setup of Events, refer back to
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Click here for the step by step -
Step 4 - Setup Specific Assets for Contract Management
The specific object register is therefore crucial in defining how a specific instance of this object will be managed throughout its life cycle. There are quite a few categories of objects but these can be summarised into the following categories:
Organisation: Can be defined as a unit of people, systematically structured and managed to meet a need or to pursue collective goals on a continuing basis. All organisations have a management structure that determines relationships between functions to carry out defined tasks.
Equipment Register: Tangible properties (asset) which include things such as equipment, support equipment, etc. which is used in the operations of a business. Examples of equipment include ground moving equipment, support equipment, etc. Use this form to create and maintain the equipment objects. Equipment can be in a pipeline i.e. in a warehouse, technical store, in reception, in production, in maintenance, in operation or in the process of disposal. Maintaining the Equipment register enables the organisation to manage its inventory across the entire pipeline. This implies that control is gained over the inventory items between measuring points in a particular path, expressed in quantitative and/or financial terms.
Building, Facility and Plant Register: General: Permanent, semi-permanent, or temporary commercial or industrial property such as a building, facility or structure built, established, or installed for the performance of one or more specific activities or functions. Include things such as land or buildings, plants, mines etc. which is used in the operations of a business. Maintaining the facility register enables the organisation to manage its land, buildings, plants and mines across the entire organisation. This implies that control is gained over the inventory items between measuring points in a particular path, expressed in quantitative and/or financial terms.
Plant: A building capable of manufacturing goods of all sizes in large quantities to be sold by a business. Plants can be considered either a long term asset if owned by the organisation, or both a long term liability if leased or rented.
Livestock Register: Include things such as cattle, sheep or any type of livestock etc. which is used for operations of a business. Maintaining the livestock register enables the business to manage its livestock across the entire operation. This implies that control is gained over the inventory items between measuring points in a particular path, expressed in quantitative and/or financial terms.
Personnel Register (Human Capital): In an organisational context human capital refers to the collective value of the organisation’s intellectual capital (competencies, knowledge, skills, health).
Transport: Tangible properties (asset) which include things such as vehicles, trucks, air crafts, water crafts, etc. which is used in the operations of a business. Use this form to create and maintain the transport objects. Examples of transport include vehicles (light and heavy), passenger air crafts, helicopters, ships, etc.
The Objectives are:
- To define and setup specifics for equipment, facility registers, vehicles, etc. (Assets)
- To classify specifics into groups
- To link the physical asset to an specific type, organisation and events
- To understand why and how to manage the activities and details pertaining to the registered physical assets
- Maintain specific structures
Definition of Specific
Management requires information at strategic level to plan object utilisation. Every object is registered and their statuses are monitored. The specific, rental and operational statuses of an object must be known to make informed decisions with respect to its rental and/or operational utilisation while taking cognisance of the current status and historical performance. Various functionalities on 360° Strategic Asset management allow the owner to gain access to the necessary information.
Use this process to create and maintain a list of specifics for an object. Specifics can be specific detail to a part, item, person, etc. This function will open a form displaying the selected object and its lower level structure in a tree view format. This function is also used to update the specific structure in accordance with the generic structure. It should only be necessary to use this function if the generic configuration structure template of the object type has been changed.
Create and Setup Specific Asset for Contract Management
For more detail definition and setup of Specifics, refer back to
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Click here for the step by step -
Step 5 - Contract Management (Rental)
The following process is the work flow for creating a new contract with an external organisation or an internal organisation/department. Use this form to create and maintain Contracts. Contract Management is used to create, maintain, and enquire about contracts.
There are many different possible flows and processes in the major process of Contract Management. The following diagram reviews the processes of Contract Management and the detailed Contract Planning Process Flow:
Create and Maintain Contract:
For more detail definition on contracts, refer back to
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For more information on the step by step process, refer back to
Step 6 - Feedback Process
The main purpose of this function is to provide feedback on contracts in progress. Feedback can be done on all resources (contract specific lines) linked to the contract. This includes:
- Hours used per individual person (for example: Contractor, Tradesman/Technician)
- Hours used per individual Special Tools/Equipment
- Monthly revenue per item/resource as quoted
- Monthly usage per item/resource
For more detail information to do Contract Feedback, refer back to
Contract Posting is the process to create the financial transactions for a sales order or project management, if project integration is used. Contract postings can be run for a batch of contracts or a single contract.
For more detail information to do Contract Postings, refer back to
Step 7 - Process Invoice (Billing) and Generate Invoice
If the work is completed the status of the execution specific line can be changed to “Complete”. If all the feedback is done and completed on this execution order, the execution order’s status can be changed to “Financial Complete”. The system will automatically run the financial transactions to create the journals for the invoicing process. The posted journals will be in Projects (if project integration is ON) or in Sales Orders. Select “Enquiries” under “Financial transactions” and the user will find the posted journals. The accounting department can now make the decision to generate the “Invoice” for the customer.
Generate Invoices from Sales Orders:
If the contract posting is completed for the billing period, the Invoice/s has to be generated from the sales orders. The posted journals will be in Sales Orders. The accounting department can now make the decision to generate the “Invoice” for the customer. The following is the process for generating an invoice in Sales Ledger.
For more detail information to do Generate Invoices from Sales Orders, refer
Generate Invoices from Projects:
If the contract posting is completed for the billing period, the Invoice/s has to be generated from the projects. The posted journals will be in Projects Management Module. The accounting department can now make the decision to generate the “Invoice” for the customer. The following is the process for generating an invoice in defined project for the selected customer.
For more detail information to do Generate Invoices from Projects, refer
Step 8 - Finalise the Contract
The Feedback and Invoice processes will be repeated for the duration of the contract. The following status changes will happen in order to finalise the contract:
- Complete Status - Once the contract reaches the end date of the contract the contract customer status can be updated to be completed.
- Financial Complete Status - Accounting department has run the final billing process and then once completed the status can be updated to financial complete.
- Finished – The contract status can be updated to finish when there is NO OPEN Sales Orders, Purchase Orders or Projects (If project integration is ON). The system will check if there are any open sales orders, purchase orders or projects, the CUSTOMER CONTRACT STATUS will not be allowed to be UPDATED.
Step 9 - Extended Billing
Extended billing indicator on Contracts:
When the contract reaches the END DATE, and the Customer wants to extend the contract for a longer period and more billing has to run on the contract, the Extended Billing indicator has to be ticked on contract.
Extended billing indicator on Object Structure
The Extended Billing Indicator can also be switched on Organisation/Company level in the Object Structure Form and this will allow that ALL contracts that are created for this organisation/company can have extended billing. When any new contracts are created and the indicator is ticked at this level, it will filter through to the contract level on header and specific lines.
The following is the link to the standard generic setup of the different functions: