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Help all your associates, fellow employees, or dependent companies review all commitments to their suppliers and customers— contractual and informal. Change the commitments that cannot be kept once needed deliverables fail to be provided. Possible litigation must be mitigated.

Research and gather useful software tools that can help assess your Year 2000 status. Get to know how to use them and how reliable they are. This will save your associates time and money, define the parameters of interoperability, and assist in demonstrating the business risks you share.

Determine your bank’s approach to Year 2000 compliance. Your bank may demand reasonable assurance of compliance before it renews your line of credit (as banks are doing in the U.S.) Call the Canadian Bankers Association or your bank manager for more information. You must stay abreast of the constantly changing factors affecting finance-related Year 2000 problems.

Make an inventory of all software and hardware (active and inactive) and then evaluate which components are mission critical. This will save time and money. Query software providers and secure a guarantee of Year 2000 compliance. This will undoubtedly be difficult.

If your associates are not Year 2000 compliant, what is the likelihood of their survival? If there are reasons to believe they will not be compliant, accountants should discuss their required reporting procedures for firms which are not going concerns. The CICA backs this approach.

Clients will need your help in determining whether they can be truly successful in Year 2000 conversions before it is too late (see our discussion paper, Year 2000: Whatever it Takes). Even if your verdict is "too late," they’ll need your help even more, particularly with their contingency planning.

Initiate liaisons with Year 2000 service providers who can help. Visit the multitude of websites to locate this help.

Get your associates thinking "survival." No one will criticize those who are overprepared. And get everyone to eliminate their marginal activities. Equipment, facility and infrastructure acquisitions should be re-evaluated until you are certain about which direction you will take for Year 2000 compatibility. This includes premises(lease renewals) maintenance contracts of all kinds, safety controls and security systems which must be considered for risk of operating failure.

Include the insurance companies. Business interruption will inevitably occur. What expenses will be covered if business interruption arises from external causes. What external causes are included in the coverage? Will the premiums be prohibitive? Will insurance companies survive?