You've fixed your Year 2000 bug - but what about your suppliers?
Recent news headlines rightly proclaim that insurance policies, covering everything from exports to personal injury, will exclude liability for effects resulting from the 'millennium bomb'. This is no surprise - insurers don't take risks that are foregone conclusions. So when it comes to the business risks resulting from the Year 2000 computer problem, you are largely on your own.
The prudent among you will do two things: assess the risks from Year 2000 that are within your control, and figure out how exposed you are from those factors outside your control.
To work out what is within your control, consider how much you depend on your IT system and whether you can survive without it. How old are your systems? Anything bought before 1997 is suspect. How much IT do you have? Few organisations really know.
For factors outside your control, you should determine your ability to fix the problem. Can you resolve it yourself? Is there a supplier you can trust?
Do you have a supplier or customer who represents a large proportion - 20% or more - of your business? Can you trust that supplier/customer to fix their own problem and continue to trade with you? Will utility companies ensure that services such as electricity and gas are delivered through the date change?
Whatever you do, adopt a 'belt and braces' approach and get paper printouts of your accounts, orders, invoices and bank statements. Then, if you really can't be bothered, book a holiday to Cuba - allegedly the one country likely to be least affected by the millennium bug.
If you have a question you would like one of our experts to address, write to: SME, 174 Hammersmith Road, London W6 7JP
Rob Wirszycz is marketing and strategy director of EDS UK
0181 535 3200.