This scenario covers a contract dispute situation. The contract in question is an agreement between Systems Inc. and Big Bank. Please download the contract document below to familiarize yourself with the specifics of the contract.
Download and review the contract here
(Links to an external site.)
You are the manager of a large data processing project. Your company, Systems Inc., worked very hard to obtain a contract with Big Bank to do the conversions from its recent acquisition, Small Bank. The bank met with several companies to discuss who would do the best work on the contract. During your meeting with Big Bank, you told them that you had “never missed a conversion deadline.” At the time, your company had never missed a conversion deadline, but the company had only done three conversions. You also told them that your data processing systems were the fastest around. After months of negotiation, Big Bank signed the contract. The president of Big Bank said, “We like fast, and you guys are fast. We choose you.”
You started work on the data conversion immediately (ahead of contract). According to the contract, your team was responsible for ensuring that the new bank’s data were converted to Big Bank’s data processing system. The contract involved six large conversions. The first involved converting Big Bank’s savings accounts, the second its checking accounts, the third its investment portfolio, the fourth its credit cards, the fifth its mortgage portfolios, and the sixth its large business loans. Your team completed four of the six conversions without a problem. The fifth task, the largest and most important, has encountered numerous problems. Some problems have been based on personnel issues on your part and other issues have been based on the bank’s failure to provide you with necessary information. One issue resulted when the conversion was delayed for over a week. The data to be converted were formatted differently than the bank’s previously provided specifications. For that reason, the data conversion fields needed to be changed. A provision in the contract required your company to receive four people’s approval before making any changes to the conversion data fields, and one of those four people, Glenda Givealot, was out of the country doing missionary work in an area of the world that did not have cell phone reception. Another issue resulted when the conversion was supposed to occur. Because of the change in the timeline, the conversion schedule had to change. The weekend the conversion was rescheduled to occur, an ice storm struck the state where your data processing computers were housed. Your facility lost electricity for 3 days and the conversion was delayed again until power could be restored.
The banks president, who is a known hothead, was furious. He called you after power was restored and yelled,
We are rescinding this contract!
He also threatened to take the case to court to seek damages.
Systems Inc. President
Your company president wants this situation resolved amicably. He also wants to maintain the contract with the bank, because he sees the potential for a large amount of business with the bank in the future if this contract proves successful. Corporate counsel believes that the bank just needs to be shown that it is out of compliance with the contract just as we are and that both parties are to blame. He wants you to start negotiations with the bank to modify certain provisions of the contract to make expectations clearer.
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