What Does a Contract Manager Do?
Contract Managers can work at any employer that enters into a binding agreement with another party to manage documents and correspondence related to their business relationship. They use legal and financial terminology to draft detailed documents explaining business propositions. Contract Managers collaborate with department leaders to set budgets and determine timelines. They meet with potential clients, vendors, distributors and partners to develop a professional relationship and negotiate the term of each agreement. The Contract Manager’s role is to provide a consistent point of contact for both internal employees and external parties to plan, update and execute legal agreements.
Contract Manager Skills and Qualifications
An effective Contract Manager requires numerous skills and qualifications to successfully fulfill the necessary duties and responsibilities of the position. Contract Managers have to excel when it comes to negotiation, communication and documentation, so the following skills are absolutely necessary for the position:
- Communication: A Contract Manager must be able to communicate ideas effectively to the company, to the other parties involved in the contract and to stakeholders to keep everyone apprised of contract-related matters.
- Negotiation: Negotiation is essential for a Contract Manager, as it’s their job to get the most benefit to the company possible out of any contract considered.
- Confidence: A key aspect of successful contract management is confidence. It takes a strong attitude to successfully negotiate and execute contracts, as well as an understanding of when to walk away and when to stand one’s ground.
- Finance Skills: In order to evaluate whether or not a contract is good for the company, a Contract Manager must have the necessary financial skills to determine exactly how the company would benefit.
Contract Manager Salary Expectations
The average salary for a Contract Manager is $77,660 per year. Many companies also include a profit-sharing plan for their Contract Managers, which could increase earnings by about $9,500 a year depending on the success of the negotiated contracts.
Contract Manager Education and Training Requirements
A Contract Manager position has extensive education and training requirements. Having a master’s degree in business administration is preferred, but a bachelor’s degree in business is virtually a necessity. Depending on the kind of contracts the manager would be engaging in, there may also be several certification requirements. These include certifications for commercial, professional and federal contracts as provided by the National Contract Management Association.
Contract Manager Experience Requirements
Most general Contract Manager positions require several years’ worth of experience actively negotiating contracts, though experience in related positions can suffice as well. For entry-level positions, however, one can become a Contract Manager with general management or administration experience coupled with the necessary business school education with a focus on contract negotiation.
Job Description Samples for Similar Positions
You should be able to use this Contract Manager job description sample for your available position with a few tweaks. If your position varies a bit too much, however, these related jobs may be better suited for your needs: