Broad categorizations of contracts may be a method to improve how we assess productivity and quality among corporate counsel. In PricewaterhouseCoopers’ View, Issue 12 at 47, the author discusses “contractual alliances,” “outsourcing,” “distribution agreements,” “virtual joint ventures,” along with four forms of so-called structural alliances. A clever chart depicts these forms of business alliances as differing on “degree of complexity” against “degree of commitment.” In the previous sentence I listed the four contractual forms of agreement by the author’s estimate of their increasing complexity.
As a methodology, this suggests that experienced lawyers can categorize types of contracts by their general complexity. If done responsibly, a matter management system that tracks contracts handled by a law department could quantify complexity, which would shed light on quality, workload, and productivity.