Associate / Senior Associate - Commercial, IT & Outsourcing

Gowling WLG
Birmingham, West Midlands
16 Jul 2018
16 Aug 2018
Role Classification
Contract Type
Experience Level
2-5yrs PQE, 5+ yrs PQE

About Gowling WLG

Gowling WLG is an international law firm created by Gowlings, a leading Canadian law firm, and Wragge Lawrence Graham & Co (WLG), a leading UK-based international law firm. We built Gowling WLG to provide clients with legal services at home and around the world, and to help you succeed no matter how challenging the circumstances.

Gowling WLG clients have access to in-depth expertise in key global sectors along with a top-tier suite of legal services. With more than 1,400 legal professionals across offices in 18 cities worldwide and specialised expertise in countries around the globe, we’re positioned to help clients rise to the challenges they face – both today and tomorrow.

About the Team

Gowling WLG has one of the UK's largest dedicated and sector-focused commercial, IT and outsourcing contracts teams. You won't get bored – no two days will be the same. We advise on an entire range of commercial contracts; from large, ground-breaking outsourcing projects such as advising Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust on its complex and innovative project to become an international orthopaedic centre of excellence, to acting as a seamless extension to our clients' teams in advising on routine business contracts (we have advised Marks & SpencerCB Richard Ellis and Birds Eye on more than 85 contracts over the past year).

We're able to jump between these extremes because we have a substantial and specialist commercial contracts team. We typically advise on 1500 contracts each year; that's 6 contracts every working day (but don't worry, that's not just your workload!).

We act for clients across a huge range of sectors including automotive, health and care, retail and leisure, telecoms, tech, food and beverage, and the public sector. Our partners are the Head of Health & Care Sector, Head of the Public Procurement, Head of the Food & Beverage Sector and Head of Data Protection.

What are we specialists in? Alliancing, collaboration and commercial joint ventures, data protection, e-commerce, facilities management, property/asset management, general outsourcing and procurement, health and care services contracts, IT outsourcing and cloud arrangements, data centres, logistics and warehousing, manufacturing and supply of goods, agency, distribution and franchising.

Our team consists of four partners and around 20 fee earners. We work seamlessly across all of our offices to deliver an exceptional and first class service to our clients. So what are you waiting for – jump on board!

What it's like to work with us

Our team has a flat structure, with everyone valuing each other's contributions. That's important when you spend five days a week with your work colleagues. We work hard, but play hard too and our team has lots of social events to build relationships. We have years of experience, meaning you'll learn from experts who really know their stuff and want to share it with you; our experts will invest the time to support your development.

Your career is just that; yours. You have the freedom to attend any training (whether that's internally or externally). In fact, our partners actively encourage you to do that. Working here will give you all the tools you need to develop your legal, sector or commercial knowledge at your fingertips.

Main Duties and Responsibilities

This team is a vibrant team with huge enthusiasm for supporting clients develop the contracts they need to build and secure their businesses.  It considers itself one of the leading IT teams in the UK . The successful candidate will be exposed to a broad range of IT contracts across many sectors including retail, food and drink, pharma, financial services and telecoms. There is a diverse and interesting blend of work and the opportunity to learn and develop in this role is greater, in our view, than other IT opportunities.

Recent examples of the contracts it gets involved in include:

  • M&S on the contracts to transform its website
  • Argos on its pilot agreement with eBay of a new “fulfilment marketplace” network, to have goods delivered to Argos stores.
  • SAB Miller on the IT framework contract to roll out its ERP solution.
  • GSK on a large telecoms project

That does not mean the team only does big contracts for household names.  It has a diverse practice acting for many mid and large sized businesses advising on both routine IT contracts and strategically important contracts.

The role involves:

  • taking instructions, structuring, drafting and negotiating IT contracts;
  • corresponding and/or liaising with clients and counter parties;
  • working alone, subject to appropriate supervision, or as part of a team on matters according to according to their size and complexity or supervising more junior lawyers; and
  • active role in business development – building relationships with clients, proactively seeking out business development opportunities and helping secure them,  administering sales pipelines, writing articles and alerts, participating in tenders and attending functions and events;
  • running meetings;
  • file management including delegation and supervision of tasks as appropriate;
  • time recording, costs estimating and billing.

The work will cover IT contracts (software development/ licensing, outsourcing, e-commerce)  and data protection advice.

Key skills and experience

A solicitor with experience of drafting and advising on IT contracts and advising on data protection law.

We are looking for someone who is:

  • team-spirited;
  • commercial;
  • robust (in negotiation);
  • responsible and able to think on feet to assess risks and exercise sound judgement;
  • an enthusiasm for commercial contracts;
  • developing a track record in developing and maintaining client relationships;
  • keen to be involved in business development;
  • solid technical ability in the law and drafting;
  • ambitious, flexible and positive. 

Equal Opportunities

Gowling WLG is committed both to promoting equality and diversity in the firm and to Equal Opportunities in employment. The firm believes in equality of opportunity regardless of race or racial group (including colour, nationality, ethnicity, national origins), religion, caste or belief, age, disability, gender, gender identity, gender reassignment,  sexual orientation, marriage and civil partnerships, surrogacy, adoption and parental rights. This also includes any incidents of perceptive or associative discrimination and harassment.

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