Even as Hewlett-Packard (NYSE: HPQ) spars with former Autonomyexecutives, the technology giant is striving to get its software house in order for 2013. A solid first step: Key HP Software executives Subbu Iyer (pictured, l.) and Matt Morgan (r.) are hitting the road and meeting key industry influencers to discuss the company’s on-premises, hybrid cloud and software strategies. Rumor has it there could even be a cup of coffee with The VAR Guy. Smart move. Here’s why.

Iyer is VP, products and strategy, applications, HP Software. Morgan is VP, hybrid IT and cloud product Marketing, HP Software. Together, Iyer and Morgan will attempt to put HP Software’s message in proper context to partners and customers.

The past two years have been turbulent for HP. In 2011 the company pushed former CEO Leo Apotheker out the door, killed WebOS hardware, considered then abandoned plans to spin-off its PC business, and paid a lofty premium for Autonomy. In 2012, current CEO Meg Whitman said HP would require several years to complete a turnaround, and the company began writing down the EDS and Autonomy buyouts.

Money Matters

Still, there are signs of progress within HP Software. During its fiscal Q4 2012 results, announced in Nov. 2012, HP said software revenue of $1.2 billion was up 14% from the prior year period. License revenue was up 9% year-over-year, and support and services each saw strong growth at 9% and 48%, respectively. Plus, HP had its largest SaaS bookings quarter in history. Overall, fourth quarter operating profit for software was $318 million or 27% of revenue, HP concluded.

A lot of those figures and milestones got lost in all the Autonomy noise. Now, it’s up to HP’s Iyer and Morgan to put the software momentum — and next steps — in context. Iyer is a five-year veteran of HP Software who also has extensive start-up experience. Morgan, meanwhile, plays a key role evangelizing HP Cloud — which achieved several business milestones in December 2012.

The bottom line: For most of 2012, HP Software was on the defensive — explaining the massive Autonomy write-down and striving to differentiate from emerging cloud rivals. For 2013, Iyer and Morgan are trying to put HP Software on the offensive. The VAR Guy hopes to hear more later this month…