Lurking Y2K Problems : LUSENET : Grassroots Information Coordination Center (GICC) : One Thread

Daily News Lurking Y2K Problems By Sherman Fridman, Newsbytes. March 08, 2000

Just when it seemed that the expression "Y2K" had become a thing of the past, PricewaterhouseCoopers, the world's largest professional services organization, has issued a "Technology Barometer" report which finds that as of February, 12 percent of large technology businesses in the US still had lingering Y2K-related projects or repairs in process.

In an interview with Newsbytes, Warren Martin, managing partner of PricewaterhouseCoopers Global Technology Practice in Washington, D.C., said that none of the work remaining to be done was "mission- critical," and that all of the large companies were Y2K compliant in all crucial areas by Dec. 31, 1999.

But, Martin said, companies, especially the larger ones, had to prioritize the Y2K work that needed to be done. What's left now, he said, are problems with small non-recurring, little needed applications or functionality such as internally generated spreadsheets and budgeting projecting applications.

However, the cost to business of these ongoing Y2K fixes is not insubstantial. While some executives were uncertain about the level of spending represented by these projects, the PricewaterhouseCoopers survey found that the cost was anticipated to average almost 9 percent of the current fiscal year's IT (information technology) budget for larger firms.

Smaller companies, which generally had fewer outstanding Y2K projects, are faring better. Only 3 percent report the existence of such projects, and the costs of doing the required tasks are estimated to average 8 percent of the IT budgets of these smaller companies.

"Given the enormity and complexity of the task, it's reasonable that some large business may have had residual Y2K work to be done," said Paul Weaver, PricewaterhouseCoopers' global technology leader. "In contrast, the smaller companies with less critical mass have had less existing infrastructure to deal with for Y2K. They have been growing so rapidly that most have been able to combine their Y2K needs with ongoing IT replacements and upgrades, accomplishing almost all of them together."

According to the report, most remaining Y2K related spending for large technology businesses was in the product, or software sector. Thirteen percent of large product businesses report that these projects represent an average of 13 percent of their current fiscal IT budget.

Ten percent of large service businesses also report some Y2K-related work remaining, but the level of residual spending is low, less than 2 percent of their current IT budget.

Pete Collins, director of the PricewaterhouseCoopers survey, told Newsbytes that about 150 chief financial officers (CFOs) of large public companies, and 391 CEOs of small companies were telephoned for the survey, and that these business executives form a core group that is surveyed by his company on an ongoing basis

-- Martin Thompson (, March 10, 2000

Moderation questions? read the FAQ