Contracting Function

Legal Ops Tips: Essential Contract Function Checklists

Ever wanted to know what kind of checklists support optimal contract function performance?

2 minutes • 20 Jun 21


Legal Ops Tips: Contract function checklists

Contract support is one of the most visible (and critical activities) undertaken by every in-house legal team globally. Being good at contracting support tends to correlates positively to high legal team value recognition.

Creating checklists is a super efficient way of supporting your contracting function. Almost every stage of the contracting process can benefit from the application of checklist based support.

In this blog we unpack some of the most common contract function support related checklists that we recommend in-house legal teams should prepare and utilize.

Key Agreement Type Checklists

You should have a specific and clear contracting checklist for each of the key types of agreements that your legal team is regularly required to support.

Whilst this list will obviously be organisation specific, extremely common checklists for this category include:

  • Third Party Contract (Paper)
  • NDA & Confidentiality Agreements
  • Purchase Order Terms & Conditions
  • Services Agreement
  • Goods & Services Agreements
  • Supply of Goods
  • Website Terms & Conditions
  • Consultancy Agreement
  • Data Processing Agreements
  • Essential Legal Contracts  

Being good at the agreements you do most often just makes sense. Producing checklists for the above agreement types will be an excellent start. 

Key Contracting Issue Checklists

Similarly, as much as 75% of the clauses of your average commercial agreement are by in large the same, so developing a checklist for specific legal contracting issues that will come up time and again is a great team resource to develop.

The first checklists that we would recommend you develop for this category include checklists for the following clauses:

  • Liability Clause
  • Indemnity Clause
  • Termination Clause
  • Data Protection Clause
  • Payment Clause
  • Intellectual Property

We recommend picking on the most important contracting issues first. Being good at the issues that matter the most is an efficient strategy. In time you can build out your checklists to cover the majority of contracting issues.

Contract Function Support Checklists

For the contracting function to run in an optimised fashion, there are many other activities over and beyond the actual "review" of the contracts that must be performed.

Below is a list of contract function related areas that also benefits from checklist based support:

  • Contract Approval Compliance
  • Contract Risk Assessment
  • Contract Administration
  • Contract Renewal
  • Contract Variation
  • Contract Execution & Contract Signatories
  • Contract Amendment & Variation
  • Contract Termination
  • Contract Template Usage
  • Vendor Evaluation
  • Vendor Annual Compliance Certification
  • Contract Notices

Checklist driven contracting performance

The use of checklists by you in-house team members correlates positively with in-house performance capabilities. The best performing teams use them extensively, and the worst performing teams are too busy to prepare them.   

Checklists are easy to prepare and devastatingly efficient in their contribution to in-house legal team performance. So checklists are a “must have” for any team trying to improve performance.  

They quite literally are the nutrition, sleep and exercise of in-house legal team health. There is no aspect of in-house legal team operations that they do not substantially improve. 

For you to achieve optimal performance from your contracting function it is vital that you deploy checklist based support assets. 

Your next steps

Using contracting related checklists can be a powerful means to optimise the way your in-house legal team supports the overall contracting function process.

Creating a checklist template that your in-house team can use to whip up checklist assets is a great first move. A custom checklist for your specific contract review scenarios makes great sense.

You can check out our Blog - GLS Legal Ops Tools: The Simple Checklist - for a guide on how to create a great checklist - including our checklist design tips.

Of course, most in-house teams are extremely busy - their time is valuable and in scarce supply. As such, the GLS Legal Operations Centre offers a wide range of contract function support solutions, including checklists, that will allow you to put this incredible department resource to work for your team.

Do check out the solutions on the right - all are available from the GLS Legal Operations Centre right now. We offer a veritable shopping list of available checklists.


Please check out the GLS solutions and know-how resources listed on the right side of this page – they might assist your legal team with the issues explored in this Blog. 

Of course, if you would like discuss your transformation needs – please book a 30 minute FREE CONSULT WITH GLS 

In the interim, here are 7 resources and tools that may assist you as you transform the performance capabilities of your legal team:

1. GLS's Ultimate Guide to Legal Operations: download this HERE, and read it thoroughly and regularly. It is a wonderful transformation companion

2. GLS Transformation Boot Camp: for our free and hugely successful, 10 week long, email-based boot camp on how to effectively transform your legal team you can SIGN UP HERE

3. GLS Knowledge Centre: click HERE to access lots of informative and instructive white papers, blogs and training resources etc. - all focused on helping to improve your legal team's performance

4. GLS Legal Operations Community: join the GLS Legal Operations Community and collaborate with other in-house leaders as they seek to tackle many of the same performance issues that you face, click here to JOIN NOW

5. Visit GLS Connect: visit the GLS CONNECT PAGE and select the information you would like to receive from the GLS Legal Operations Community

6. GLS Legal Team Transformation Plans: mitigate the risks of transformation failure by taking a GLS TRANSFORMATION SUPPORT PLAN 

7. Register: GLS Legal Operations Centre: REGISTER HERE to access the GLS Legal Operations Centre for free and to receive more than US$20,000 worth of legal team performance resources

© The GLS Group - Law Rewritten

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