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Continous professional development

Fit for purpose contracting: enhancing commercial capability

Discover how to procure contracts correctly and legally and achieve effective contract management with our contracting development programme. 

Devised and led by our team of procurement and contracting experts, the lessons you’ll learn during this training will help you get things right first time. Each session is relevant to the challenges you face today, while helping you keep one eye on the future. 

Who should attend?

This programme is aimed at anyone who has authority to legally bind a school, academy or trust into a commercial contract - for example, senior trust leaders, procurement and contract managers, head teachers, finance managers and school business managers. Content will be relevant to any individual whose role involves procuring external service providers within or on behalf of a school or academy trust.


Along with building your confidence, knowledge and abilities in commercial contracting, making you a valuable source of expertise for your employer and colleagues, you’ll take away best practice advice and top tips and make new connections along the way. 


With six hours of online contact time over three consecutive weeks, this bite-sized approach to learning provides three two-hour sessions of interactive training. During this interactive programme you’ll be in discussion with other schools and academies and we’ll ensure all of your questions on contracts are answered.


This six-hour programme costs just £450+VAT per delegate.

Session 1: Perfect procurement

Length: two hours

This session will be based around a fictional case study. Each part will include a 15-minute break-out session and feedback from all of the groups.

Part 1 - Building strong foundations:

  • Choosing the best tendering process for your needs
  • Fit for purpose contract documents for tendering
  • When and how to negotiate contract terms

Part 2 - Securing the roof: 

  • Entering into the final contract, based on what you need
  • Top tips for setting up the contract to succeed

Session 2: Cracking contacts

Length: two hours

Commercial contracts and pitfalls to avoid during negotiation:

  • Reviewing key provisions in commercial supply contracts
  • RAG rating each key issue available during negotiations

Following on using the same fictional case study, this session includes three 10-minute breakout sessions for delegates to consider options on key commercial negotiation issues.

Session 3: Contract catastrophes

Length: two hours

Contract management:

  • Understanding your contracts
  • Due diligence required
  • Key dates – autorenewal
  • Performance issues
  • Key clauses to look out 

Contract issues and resolutions:

  • Common pitfalls
  • Breaches
  • Performance and delivery issues
  • Dispute resolution and complaints
  • Variations and audit trails

Termination and wrongful termination:

  • Why terminate?
  • Implications of termination
  • How to terminate
  • Notice of termination