Responding to Economic Uncertainty - Reducing Contractual Costs Quickly
Last week, LegalShift issued a communication entitled “How Clients are Addressing “Project Distancing” and Responding to Economic Uncertainty"
For those seeking to double down on short and mid-term cost reduction, the quickest two savings opportunities – 60 to 90 days - appear to be with:
Telecommunications: mobile devices and wired (network infrastructure and phone lines), and
Technology-related contracts that are expiring within 90 days.
We recommend that you evaluate and take the following steps to pursue your own technology and telecommunications cost savings:
1. Determine if any of the firm’s technology or teIecom services are not under contract.
If so, these are the ripest for cost reduction and, therefore, should be attacked first. Typically, the firm will get much better rates from its carriers and vendors if it agrees to enter into a contract for a certain term.
2. Determine which of the firm’s technology contracts (e.g., software, hardware, SaaS, managed services, support and maintenance) and telecom contracts (e.g., voice, internet, data, wireless, and audio and web conferencing) are set to auto-renew or expire within the next 90 days.
All of these contracts are ripe for renegotiation. This can be complex as the firm’s technology and telecom contracts may have multiple expiration dates for different services (e.g., software modules) auto-renew or expire at different times.
3. Identify your larger telecom contracts, regardless of expiration date, as these rates may be subject to negotiation during the existing contract term.
As a condition to giving better terms, the carrier may require that the firm extends its contract which may be a worthwhile trade-off for the firm.
My colleagues have experience effectively negotiating with vendors and carriers to obtain the best rates and contract terms from them. These services are cost-effective, as they more than pay for themselves.