It's your turn for the dreaded rotating assignment: application support. Just thinking about all the things that could go wrong strikes fear and dismay in the heart of every technology professional. No one wants to spend hours searching through log files and exchanges between departments and with end users, investigating load failures and data issues.

Supporting applications is challenging work that can be made manageable with the proper approach. The keys include a clear process flow, a well-documented notification/communication plan, proper operational documentation, adherence to development standards and capturing critical information during incidents. This column focuses on some of the things that can help deliver top-notch application support, especially in a multiapplication environment.

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