Wisdom Australia 2019 Speaker Spotlight: Negotiating with an IT lawyer

12 November 2019
3 minute read
ITAM News & Analysis

Wisdom Australia 2019 Speaker Spotlight: Negotiating with an IT lawyer

12 November 2019
3 minute read

This is the fifth “speaker spotlight” article for Wisdom Australia 2019 – a chance for you to see some of the wonderful speakers and sessions we’ve got in store for you this November in Melbourne.

If you’ve not yet registered, go and do it now – https://itassetmanagement.net/event/itam-review-annual-conference-2019-australia/ …then come back and read this article 😁

I chatted to Matthew Southwell, Legal Counsel at Telstra, about his upcoming session.

Matthew Southwell, Legal Counsel, Telstra

What is your session called?

Software Negotiation Masterclass: Enterprise Software Vendors

What is your session about?

Negotiating with software vendors can be incredibly complex. Their licence terms are often one sided, containing invasive audit rights, limited warranties and licencing metrics which are usually vague and unclear. In this session, we will explore common issues which we see in these negotiations and shed some light about how these can be approached and what questions your organisation should be asking to ensure these risks are managed.

How did you get started in ITAM?

I am an IT lawyer with 9 years’ experience advising in technology and telecommunications. While I don’t work in ITAM, my clients are Software Asset Managers who frequently seek advice from me in relation to software licence compliance, audits and a range of legal issues which arise with software suppliers.

How would you describe what your company does?

Telstra is an Australian telecommunications company which builds and operates telecommunications networks and markets voice, mobile, internet access, pay television and other products and services. It is the largest telecommunications company in Australia and one of the largest listed companies on the Australian Stock Exchange.

What’s your favourite part of the job?

I equally enjoy the complex and diverse range of work that I get to be a part of and also the support I receive from an amazing legal team.

What topics should delegates ask you about in Melbourne?

People should feel to free to ask general questions about software contracts and things to think about when faced with difficult vendors.

What one thing would improve the ITAM industry?

More equitable pricing and licencing models which place customers first rather than the supplier’s revenue recognition and bottom line.

What’s your favourite movie?

Shaun of the Dead.

The legal side of ITAM can be fantastically important in so many ways and I think it’s important for everyone to have an understanding of how this angle can impact a contract negotiation.

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