Year 2000 'fix it' companies are set to cash in on the industry's late starters, analysts reporting they have yet to spend more than 50 per cent of Y2K budgets.
In addition, many users are leaving Y2K hardware upgrades to late '99, creating golden opportunities for network integrators such as Memorex Telex, which last week launched its Year 2000 Network Audit Service to meet the demand.
Bill Nixon, Memorex Telex' network consultant manager, said other research from analysts such as Gartner Group and the Australian Bureau of Statistics indicates the company's specialist Y2K consulting for hardware is set to profit from plans by many companies to stop all non-Y2K spending after September this year.
The Year 2000 Network Audit Service is designed to identify all aspects of the networking environment that could be affected by the year 2000 date change, using software such as Greenwich Mean Time's Check 2000.
Memorex Telex is focusing its audit service specifically on network servers, desktop and portable computers, and networking equipment including hubs and routers. The company provides compliance status and documentation for each element in the network, including a 'Gap Analysis Report' to outline the work needed to achieve Y2K compliance.
According to Nixon, many companies are leaving the Y2K conversion of networking and other hardware equipment until later this year, once they resolve the complexities of fixing host applications.
The increased demand is set to boost revenue lost from the decline of the company's traditional network design and project management business.
"What we feel is there will be a diversion of the normal business we do," he said. "[But] we suspect that most companies will spend more than usual . . . the actual increase of expenditure we don't know yet."
The service typically costs users around $125 for each device, which Nixon said includes Y2K documentation, verification of compliance and travel costs. Any subsequent hardware upgrades the company recommends is an additional cost, for which Memorex Telex offers a separate purchasing process or leaves the user open to other industry suppliers.
"We're offering a service they would otherwise have to do themselves."