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Deliverables is a project management term describing an object or function that must be provided or completed by a certain due date.  Deliverables can be tangible or intangible.  They include reports, graphic designs, computer program upgrades, analysis, or anything else that helps a larger project along to completion.

For contracts involving intangible products, the deliverable often is the detailed description of the intangible product that is the subject matter of the contract. For instance, Conglomo hires ABC Consulting to modernize its inventory management system. In the contract, Conglomo will specify a number of deliverables. This is often referred to as a statement of work.

One deliverable might be ABC’s detailed analysis of how to modernize Conglomo’s inventory system. Another might be custom software that automates the purchasing process. Still another deliverable might be special computers configured to run the inventory software. 

Once Conglomo receives all the deliverables as specified in the contract, they will pay ABC’s consulting fee. 

The statement of work also serves to keep track of a project’s agreed-upon deliverables. For instance, during the inventory modernization, Conglomo asks ABC to upgrade its shipping software. ABC can point to the consulting contract and say that this deliverable was not included in the contract. If Conglomo wants this service as well, the contract will have to be amended to add the shipping software upgrade as a deliverable – with a corresponding increase in the consulting fee paid to ABC.

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