We've all heard many times about the calamity that is expected to occur when we reach the Year 2000. If our information systems aren't fixed, doomsayers seem to predict that it will be the end of the (information technology) world as we know it. Accounts payable and accounts receivable systems will miscalculate the age of the payables and receivables. Credit cards won't work properly. Interest calculations will be incorrect. Airline reservations systems will have wrong dates. And so on. In reality, if this problem isn't fixed, the actual impact it will have on the world at large is anyone's guess. But, since the potential problems loom large, it's far better to fix the problem now than to wait until the Year 2000.

No one would argue the point that the problem needs to be fixed. However, I would argue against the way most organizations are approaching the solution. From the discussions I've had with a fairly large number of organizations, and from what I've read about how other organizations are handling the Year 2000 crisis, one thing seems clear--the focus is on the operational systems. Granted, these operational systems are generally the mission-critical applications. By definition, the organization could not function at all without them working properly, so the sense of urgency to fix these applications is totally understandable.

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