Is *your* company/business/employer going to make it? : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

Im rather curious how people perceive the company they work for (or own) in regards to y2k remediation. Aside from farmers, pretty much everyone works for (or again, owns) some type of enterprise. Whether that means you work for a traditional small/medium/large company, or work for the government, or are a tradesman (plumber/carpenter etc), most of you have some sort of a structured job.

My question does not concern cascading failures, vendor failures, or failures due to loss of the "iron triangle". Assume for a minute that utilities and vendors will be ok, do you think that due to YOUR COMPANIES IT SYSTEM, you will be out of a job next year?

Before you flame me as a polly, I am WELL aware that the ripple effect and proper functioning of utilities and banks is critical to the outcome of y2k. And I do have concerns about them (particularly the banks). I guess what Im asking is, if the iron triangle comes through this relatively well, will YOUR company/business fold anyway? Are we looking at a bell-shaped curve here - maybe a 20% failure rate?

Ill answer my own question to start. I think the company I work for will be ok - not error free by any means, but ok. I work for a medium size electronics manufacturer that is not overly automated. We have found very few embedded systems problems. I know our CIO pretty well, and he tells me that while we can expect some problems, nothing *should* be a show stopper. He may be wrong, but I dont think he is deliberately lying to me.

-- Bob (bob@bob.bob), July 07, 1999


My company will make it. We do pharmaceutical manufacture. Most of the processes which control tablets/capsules manufacture are not plc control. Most of the manufacture is done using on/off, stopwatches and power consumption endpoints. Most equipement is not effected by pc interaction because there is no pc interaction with most production settings. Very Few operations are pc controlled. Those that are can all be run manually by application weight, time, moisture endpoint ect.

Outside the production setting the desktop computers have been upgraded along with the servers and mainframes over the past 4 months. New software is also being installed(downloaded to desktops) and should be completed by the end of this month. In two months, the old software will be removed from the system. The IT department did not say that this software would be effected by y2k, but they are pushing to get transitioned to this software. The pushing is in the form of starting new software training before the it could be downloaded to the desktops.

-- Ned P Zimmer (, July 07, 1999.

I work for a major oil company. We largely rely on information from manufacturers about the systems we have installed. We are about 60% done with our in-house systems. The mission-critical ones.

We've been working on payroll for over two years, and the deadline keeps slipping. The last deadline was June 15. There is no new deadline listed on the database.

You tell me whether we'll make it.

-- Dog Gone (, July 07, 1999.

My "company" (State Agency in WI) will make the overall checks and most fixes. They will NOT have upgraded/corrected all Windows NT problems, any embedded chips, or errors created by Y2K upgrades or fixes, and testing will not be completed, not even tried in "real world" situations.

I'll probably have a job for a while --- Hey its a bureaucratic agency.

In other words, in Politically Correct language, it is 99% Y2K ready.

-- Jon Johnson (, July 07, 1999.

The V.P. of Corporate Finance the large international publishing firm that I work for sent this statement to me upon my Y2K inquiry last year.

"We have been here for 100 years and with continue to do business after 2000 regardless of 2YK"

Yes, 2YK....

I will be in another occupation soon....

-- Paul Christy (, July 07, 1999.

I teach at a major university and don't know any more than what can be scavenged. (I'm not a code head or engineer.) I've stated my view of our status before (somewhat less obtusely and more recklessly) and will state it again:

(1) Our new payroll is up and running, but said to be "unstable" whatever that means. I get my paychecks fine.

(2) Other remediations by a company that I shall call "HumanSoft" are said to be moving very slowly.

(3) Codehead friends suggested that they "think we can pull off a spring semester". (That statement was a little surreal at the time.)

(4) Some of the "HumanSoft" components are not slated to be finished for two years, but I don't know how much if the current applications are at risk.

(5) Coal-fired heating plant was not compliant in May (two independent confirmations). However, the guy in charge said, "but ask me in 6 weeks." He was suggesting imminent success. I currently have no moles that can tell me whether the plant is compliant yet.

There is a lurker/poster who works about 200 yards from my building who may provide an alternative (often quite contrary) view. (You still out there?) Anyway, there are certainly some very computer savvy characters on this campus running nervous (and probably some who are not.)

As an aside, one of our more prominent physicists when prompted about y2k was quoted as saying, "I've never seen a computer function for which there did not extist a manual work-around". He obviously has not calculated "pi" to the trillionth decimal place like several other physicists have. There are many kinds of intelligence.

Excellent question, Bob.

-- Dave (, July 07, 1999.

I own a promotional advertising company we deal directly with 3500 manufacturers all over the globe. I have yet to receive one letter that states "We are compliant" from one of them. We use trucking, UPS, Fed Ex, US postal, planes, ships, trains etc. to get the product from the manufacturer to the end user. Then there's also the eoncomy to consider.....advertising is the first thing to be cut from a businesses' budget if the eoconmy is bad. Oh, we have four desktop PC's, they're upgraded and so is the accounting and artwork software. All the rest of our computing work is dependent upon the internet.

So you tell me, are we?

When I get a compliance letter from our customers asking if "WE" will be able to provide service in 2000, I just laugh.

-- Cary Mc from Tx (, July 07, 1999.

I'm a home-based graphic designer/art director working primarily in print. My overhead is low. I am a sole proprietor with no employees. I wear just about every hat you can think of in running my business so I have a lot of control. My systems are based in the realm of Apple and Macintosh and immune to the Windows/PC y2k issues. The software I depend on to design, illustrate, layout, and produce my work is compliant. I work around problems every day. On my end, things are looking really good. Will I make it?

Bob, in my opinion, you cannot separate a business from it's clients, it's vendors, it's suppliers and say you will make it.

I can rip apart my confident first paragraph very easily.

 I'm a graphic designer working primarily in print >> which means I depend on the good fortune and aspirations of *other* businesses who want to market some product or service. If my clients become incapacitated due to a problem then my business will suffer and perhaps even die.

 I wear just about every hat you can think of >> Currently, I'm stretched beyond the normal bounds of an average, everyday worker. Aside from the extended hours I work in doing what pays the bills I also must be the tech guy, the billing guy, the marketing guy ... If my steady clients go south along with other prospective clients I simply might not have the time or the resources to keep my head above water.

 My systems are based in the realm of Apple and Macintosh >> I am a virtual slave to technology. If (more like when next?) my systems go down due to a glitch in hardware or software I am the guy who fixes it. This is under the current climate when availability of spare parts is good, etc. If this could get tough. Luckily, Macs have an outstanding ability to continue breathing. However, consider that not even Apple has claimed compliance yet. This is an area which is beyond my own ability to control.

 The software I depend on to design, illustrate, layout, and produce my work is compliant >> None of these software manufacturers is currently certified as compliant which means I don't know if they'll continue to be operational. Each of these manufacturers must sell their product through a vendor to customers in order to stay in business and continue to develop the market. Each of those customers must have customers in order to justify the purchase of software. Talk about interdependent, this can go on and on.

I haven't touched upon the technology dependent vendors I must rely on to produce prepress materials or actually print the final piece. If they are no longer able to function then I can't function.

In my opinion you can't separate a business from the possibility of cascading failures, vendor failures, or failures due to loss of the "iron triangle" and see your entity as an island unto itself. If that were the case I wouldn't be as worried about this as I am.

 I work around problems everyday >> Currently, I'm poised and ready to capture new business. Yet, every prospective client I go after is vulnerable to the same kinds of cascading failures, etc. that I am. The bigger the entity, the larger the scale of the problem with more possible points of failure.

Will my business make it? I have no idea. Will I make it. You bet I will.

Mike ======================

-- Michael Taylor (, July 07, 1999.

Cary, we need to talk. My e-mail is real : )

Mike ====================================================================

-- Michael Taylor (, July 07, 1999.

Bob, in my opinion, you cannot separate a business from it's clients, it's vendors, it's suppliers and say you will make it.

Michael, you are absolutely correct, and I wasn't trying to imply that you could. What prompted me to ask the question, was the "We're ok, it's the other guy I'm worried about" line. I have to admit, most people I talk to think their own company will be ok, but are worried about their vendors. And the vendors are worried about THEIR vendors.

With the exception of retailers (and they are actually vendors to consumers) , we are ALL vendors in one way or another, and we're all worried about each other. I was curious how many of us were worried about ourselves....

-- Bob (bob@bob.bob), July 07, 1999.

Bob, I see.

Well, I'm worried about myself even if I'm totally compliant : )

The funny thing is, come to think of it, I'm always worried about something that's business related.

Mike ==========================================================

-- Michael Taylor (, July 07, 1999.

Not a chance. I manage a temporary and permanent employment agency. Thin margins are normal in this business. It wouldn't take too many defaults to really thin the ranks of our industry.

-- Jon Williamson (, July 07, 1999.

Our own hand craft business will survive only if our customers decide to maintain their current expenditure patterns.Most customers are local/municipal authorities,museums & libraries & we can forsee that public service spending priorities could change dramatically next year.Like most small businesses we cannot survive more than eight weeks without income.

Our contingency plan...carry larger finnished stocks than usual this year,encourage customers to buy now for next year & then,if necessary,mothball business till things get back to normal..thus almost but not quite eliminating fixed overheads.That way,we figure we might just survive to fight another day if TSHF.

-- Chris (, July 07, 1999.

I recently retired from a nursing home. I have not discussed the possibilites of Y2K with the administration, but I worry that should it prove to be anything more than a bump in the road, the potential problems with deliveries of food , medical supplies and other items could be horrendous.

If water and sewage were affected, there is no way the place could be run. Our previous owner just sold the facility, and I'm wondering if Y2K wasn't at least part of the reason. Still, I can't imagine the buyers being ignorant of Y2K...the topic has been in professional journals.

If I was still working full-time, there, I would definitely be concerned about the job situation, too.

For the sake of the patients, many of whom I have come to love, I hope that their last days won't be devastated......some have no families to take them in, even in an emergency situation.

-- Jo Ann (, July 07, 1999.

Nope! I have tried to have conversations with management and their answer is: Oh I think Mike has it all taken care of except the scanner and legal department (1/3 of the company). Well, let me tell you, *Mike* sits on his butt all day drinking coffee & gabbing personal garbage on the phone to his buddies, then takes 3-4 hr lunches and comes back and drinks more lattes. The general manager did say one day at lunch, she thinks *Mike* will be bugged out before 010100. Don't you think these people would get a clue? According to them he has specialized info (translation: They have really old software & he can run reports on it) -sheesh!

-- Sammie Davis (, July 07, 1999.

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