A Thursday to plan toward
May 29, 2008
It will happen on a Thursday morning, a day when most of the world will not be at work. Perhaps your HP 3000 will be finishing its year-end reporting, or month-end, or quarter's end, but on January 1 you won't be able to call HP and ask for a patch or lab assistance to support your 3000 system.
That day is exactly 31 weeks from today. Many HP 3000 sites will still rely on HP 3000s on that day. Many others will be migrated, but there will be some community sites where the HP 3000 stands alongside the newer and faster and more extensible Unix or Windows system. Even at those places, the users will decide when the migration will be complete.
Paula Brinson at the Hampton Roads Sanitation District in Virginia is migrated already. Her IT group has built a new Customer Service application, Oracle-based, using a Web browser front end. The new system runs in the HP-UX environment at HRSD, a long-time HP 3000 customer. The users are less ready to make the change than Brinson.
The Data Center Operations Manager at HRSD reports:
The HP 3000 is still chugging with the legacy Customer Service system, to which the users are clinging.
Build something better, test it and deploy it. Congratulations. In some places the user base will still have to make a schedule to adopt the migration-based replacement. These departments leave behind what they know well, so training becomes an issue for them resolve. This is where top-level support of management, as well as directives, can be helpful.
For Brinson and the staff at HRSD, that 31-week deadline could mark the end of the legacy system use, just because HP is not there as a backup support resource to backstop the third party providers. Customers clinging to the legacy application on the 3000. An IT pro needs to discover why do they want to stay on it. The answers may provide a way to set a agreed-upon deadline to get them off the older app.
People sure do avoid change, don't they? This is where benefits can sell a transition, advantages experienced on the user level.
And for those who are looking at HP's ultimate exit from the marketplace and community, at the end of 2010, that is 135 weeks away. The last 104 will provide workarounds only, unless you can negotiate a better level of support from HP.