Idiom of the day:

Crocodile Tears” = When someone feigns sadness they ‚cry crocodile tears,‘ a phrase that comes from an old myth that the animals cry while eating. Now, a researcher has concluded that crocodiles really do bawl while banqueting – but for physiological reasons rather than rascally reptilian remorse.

Vocabulary of Contracts: Verträge

Cost-plus
Payment terms under which a supplier is reimbursed for actual (ascertained) costs plus an addition for profit – either an agreed fixed amount or a percentage of costs.

Critical path (analysis)
Most commonly used in works or major capital equipment projects. A sequence of defined activities whose timing determines the final completion date. See also Lead time. Critical path analysis is a management technique used to identify the interaction of these defined activities.

Debriefing
The term used to describe the process of explaining to unsuccessful tenderers why they have not been awarded the business and to help suppliers improve their competitive performance.

Deliverables
A collective name for all those tangible things that the supplier or contractor is required to supply under the agreement. It includes goods or finished works, together with drawings, specifications and other related documentation. It does not normally include intangibles such as warranties – these are commonly termed ‚on-going obligations‘.

Demurrage
In a voyage the obligation to see that the ship is loaded and unloaded falls to the charterer; the ship’s owner’s obligation being to get the ship to the port of loading or unloading. Demurrage is an agreed amount of damages to be paid by the charterer for exceeding the permitted amount of loading/unloading time. The quicker the total voyage time the more profitable is the transaction for the ship owner.

Economic order quantity (EOQ)
The most cost-effective quantity to order when purchasing for stock. See also Stock turn.

End user
The actual user of the goods and services purchased by the buyer, responsible for stating the requirement and often the specification.

Enquiry
Also known as invitation to tender – the buyer invites suppliers to bid for business usually setting out the specification and terms and conditions. Enquiry documents comprise all those documents – specification, terms and conditions etc – sent to suppliers to enable them to bid.

Ex-gratia claims/ claims of right
Claims that are not covered by the contract are either
– ‚claims of right‘ arising out of an action, or
– lack of action by one of the parties
which might give rise to a claim at law, or ‚ex-gratia‘, where no payment is legally due under the contract or otherwise and which cannot be recovered at law.

Expediting
An organised and sustained activity to monitor a supplier’s progressive achievement with the aim of achieving deliveries on time.

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