From navigating an IT environment to analysing challenges and goals, Somerville works closely with schools and businesses to implement and deliver software that aligns with their current operational needs and for future requirements.
This Q&A article focuses on Somerville’s National Software Sales Specialist, Danny Thien, who’s role involves navigating complex solutions and helping organisations choose the best software licensing agreements for their needs.
Danny is responsible for small and medium-sized businesses and schools to enterprise-level volume licensing agreements for Veeam, VMware, Adobe and Sophos as well as many other vendor’s portfolios. He is highly regarded for his ability to ensure clients get the best deal and solution available for their organisation. Danny is renowned for going over and above for his customers
Q: Danny, thank you for taking the time to talk to us today. To start, can you give us some background on what got you into IT?
A: Back in the 90s, the WWW was a big topic and I thought it was a bit of a funky avenue to go down. I graduated with a Bachelor of Business majoring in Electronic Commerce and initially worked as a Web Developer. I found coding quite mundane, but as I was already in IT and enjoyed communicating with people, I felt a role in sales was an ideal career for me.
Q: That’s great! What makes working at Somerville so good?
A: Well, I’ve been working at Somerville for over 3 years and overall, it’s the people, culture and most importantly – the customers. There’s nothing better than working with a bunch of great colleagues, led by a well-respected leadership team and maintaining strong customer relationships throughout.
Also, customers make my job easy! I take great pleasure in picking up the phone and getting to know them throughout their journey with Somerville. You grow with them and feel like they’re part of your extended family. I love igniting excitement and engaging customers in meaningful conversations about solutions for their organisations.
Q: What kind of conversations do you have with customers when beginning a new software licensing discussion?
A: When contacting a customer, I lead with a topic of conversation that directly relates to their industry and start to build rapport. Probing the right questions and discussing topics of interest allows me to transition into the subject of my customer’s unique software requirements.
Q: What are the main challenges people are facing when they talk to you about their requirements?
A: I would say the constant change of the licensing landscape and licensing complexity. Often, organisations are unaware of software changing and the various types of contracts that are available for different agreements.
I love to help customers overcome these challenges by taking the time to explain and educate them about their software licensing options. Through putting terms into plain English, I help organisations make informed decisions that align with their IT goals.
Q: Are you seeing any increasing security threats and are customers covered appropriately with their licensing agreements or should they look deeper into their agreements?
A: Security threats will always be present; customers constantly need to review their security policies and requirements. I always try finding ways to have a conversation around a customer’s security posture, even if I don’t discuss threats directly, it’s also important to talk about other aspects like backup or tools.
Q: What are the main issues you see customers face in not staying current or compliant with software licensing?
A: From cheaper prices to inferior products, there is a range of issues clients can run into. If a customer doesn’t review their licensing landscape, there may be the possibility of not being compliant and their licensing not up to date. Being locked into a contract can be another complication for clients, which results in missing out on software licensing that could be better suited to their needs.
Q: For these licensing agreements, do you offer many as a service, wrapped around other Somerville solutions?
A: Somerville offers a wide range of services to our extended customer base. We have an army of propeller heads who I leverage when our customers seek advice on a holistic and strategic view of their IT ecosystem. When these sort of conversations take place, other Somerville lines of business come to play in conjunction with the right type of licensing being offered.
With so many licensing agreements available, it can be difficult to determine what aligns best with your business’s needs. If you’re looking at new contracts or simply want advice on software, don’t hesitate to get in contact with a Somerville Licensing Expert representative today.