Challenge: Maintaining compliance in a world of change : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

Before, during, and especially after compliance comes managing change. This can be harder and more time consuming than some realize. For one thing, change is constant. Users not only change requirements during design, that is if you get requirements to begin with, but afterwards and continually as well. There is applications maintenance, additional functionality, hardware and software upgrades, and change required due to other sources (legislative, for example) to consider. Then there is keeping the documentation up to date to reflect all these changes. (I can almost hear you laughing).

My point is that even if compliance is achieved, it may only be temporary. Shift happens. Policies and procedures must be well thought out ahead of time, and enforced, in order to maintain compliance. This is work. It is not fun work. It requires the support of management since it will eat up valuable (and expensive) staff time. Yet it wont add a penny to quarterly earnings, nor will it increase productivity, nor will it result in a new product, nor will it help with beating a competitor to market with a product. At best, it maintains the status quo. But it is still a price that has to be paid, or the risk increases that what was deemed compliant will not stay that way very long.

We live in a world of change. Just as we need to stay tuned to developments on the Y2K front from a personal perspective, so too do the public and private entities that are working towards or have achieved compliance. Currently we read and hear about contingency plans. Between compliance and contingency lies the Gulf of Change. Ironically, the earlier compliance is achieved the more time and work may be involved in maintaining compliance in a changing environment. I think organizations will increasingly look to this challenge and recognize the importance of this. They will perhaps do things like halt new development in order to make it less of a challenge. The bottom line is that without clear and enforced policies and procedures, compliance runs the risk of being temporary. This is a challenge that can be met. The real questions are will it be met, and to what extent, and for what percentage?

-- Rob Michaels (, July 02, 1999


Thanks, Rob. Dick Mills contributed an article to Westergaard on a similar subject, entitled "The Day After Y2K Readiness".

-- Brooks (, July 02, 1999.

Brooks: A thanks to you as I missed that (and probably a lot more) since I haven't been over to that site since Jim Lord left. Rick Cowles was there a lot at the time also but he left even before Jim Lord did I think. Anyway, thanks for the link.

-- Rob Michaels (, July 02, 1999.

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