Bass, Berry & Sims intellectual property attorney Bob Brewer talks with Information Week on issues that derail information technology outsourcing projects. In an article published by InformationWeek, Bass, Berry & Sims attorney Bob Brewer provided insight on some of the issues that can harm information technology (IT) contracts and lead to disputes, such as the $100 million lawsuit between MillerCoors’ and IT contractor, HCL. The complaint was filed in March by MillerCoors against HCL over a project intended to integrate processes across the brewer’s business.

There can be a wide range of problems that lead to the derailment of an outsourced IT project. One contributing factor is the relationship between the IT staff of a client and the vendor. Many times, the IT staff can feel more in line with the vendor than their own employer. “Major problems don’t get escalated to senior management until after it’s too far gone,” explained Bob.

Not only can client/vendor relationships cause issues, but the contracts themselves can also lead to problems. For example, if both the client and vendor try to move too quickly through their contract, they are more likely to gloss over important information. “If there are a lot of responsibilities that are listed as joint (client and vendor) or the responsibilities are too high level, the parties typically have not drilled down far enough in assigning each party’s responsibilities,” Bob added.

The full article, “MillerCoors’ $100 Million IT Lawsuit Warning,” was published by InformationWeek on July 27, 2017, and is available online.