What is a Consultancy (Services) Agreement?

A consultancy agreement is designed to be used where an individual or multiple consultant(s) provide(s) consultancy services to a client for ad hoc IT services.

Consultancy agreements have the advantage of providing flexibility to both the consultant(s) and the company procuring the services.

Often such agreements are more accurately described as development agreements. However where there is no set goal, they are more likely to take the form of a “body shopping” arrangement.

What is Body Shopping?

The IT industry has embraced a form of consultancy relationship known as “body shopping”.   Body shopping is the practice of subcontracting on a short to medium term basis.  It enables companies to access skilled individuals or a team of professionals on an adjustable basis.

Body shopping can help organisations deal with the pressures of staff shortage on a short to medium term basis, or to fill critical technology skills gaps within a company.

Make sure you keep your Intellectual Property

In any event, you need to be clear who owns the intellectual property.

In a consultancy agreement, there is no automatic transfer or assignment of intellectual property rights to the client in any software, works or creations of the consultant.  Therefore, the agreement must be crystal clear as to who will own the intellectual property rights arising from the services provided.

For further information, please click here to email Simon Halberstam, Head of Technology Law, or call 020 3206 2781.