Solving Computer Problems

ALTERING computer systems to cope with European Monetary Union (EMU) should be done partly alongside work on the year 2000 problem, and partly done in isolation, an expert is warning.

Martha Bennett, analyst at the Giga Information Group, said at the

Pan European year 2000 conference - held recently in Amsterdam, the Netherlands - that carrying out changes to these systems should be done separately. But she warned that year 2000 and EMU teams should work together during planning and assessment phases. This is because they need to liaise about resourcing the work and planning work on strategic systems.

"If the year 2000 problem and EMU projects do not liaise early enough during the planning phases, it may be discovered too late that in fact both projects are competing for the same resources and neither project can be fully staffed," she said.

"This in turn means that project plans have to be re-scoped, leading to loss of valuable time. In some cases, the year 2000 problem and EMU teams may individually decide to amend existing systems. However, once the total required changes are added up, it may turn out to be more cost-effective and efficient in the long run to replace the system (or systems).

"There may not be sufficient time to implement a new system in time. In that case, plans need to be drawn up to consider the minimum changes necessary to get the company through the year 2000 problem and support the business for dealing with the EMU until such time as the new system is in place," she said

Giga Information Group, 2 Endell Street, London, United Kingdom, WC2H 9BL. Telephone: +44 171 240 6189. Fax; +44 171 240 6195.

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