Recent years have seen more businesses looking to gain greater control over the spreadsheets that are central to their business. With poor End User Computing management posing so many risks, it makes sense for companies to be aware of how to mitigate these threats. However, often very few people have the knowledge for more in-depth and advanced deployments. With that in mind, here are our three key steps to ensuring an effective EUC control project.

1. Determine the nature and variety of EUC activity within the departments seeking control
Understanding the full extent of EUC usage within a specific department will help you understand the level of flexibility that your business will require from a management solution. While some use a blanket approach (for example a commitment to move all files to a new repository), this might work for one set of processes, however not another. It is therefore essential that businesses look into factors like why EUCs are modified as well as reviewing any previous risk findings before taking next steps.

2. Define a high level operating model
Implementing greater EUC control within a company will in turn lead to new responsibilities. These will need to be mapped onto the existing organization in order to establish a future business operating model. Failure to consider this will lead to any evaluation of management software becoming more like a list of checks for functionalities rather than a test of how it will feasibly support future processes. This is especially worth considering given that most solutions on offer seem to provide similar levels of information on EUC activity. It will be down to the individual constraints placed on your business to create and monitor this information that will be the main factor in whether your project is a success or not.

3. Understand and avoid the major pitfalls in implementing EUC control
As EUC control has evolved, it has seen a number of projects not succeed in becoming regular business processes. These are just some of the reasons for failure to implement an EUC control:

  • EUCs are controlled separately to the business process that they support.
  • Users are presented with too much data and so begin to look for shortcuts.
  • Dependence on a simple ‘one size fits all’ control model.

Avoiding these common pitfalls is essential to ensuring that your EUC control is a successful, long-term solution.

What next?
Follow the above steps and your business will be well placed to ensure that you have effective EUC control both internally and externally. With some technology solutions this will be the end of the line as the control process does not normalize business data held in a file, instead remaining as unusable as the original EUC versions. However, more progressive solutions use a system which normalizes and consolidates all historical EUC content, allowing users to apply business intelligence to data and replace manual spreadsheet processes with automated analyses to achieve major improvements in control, accuracy and efficiency.

Prev Next

Related Content:

Get In Touch

Let's talk about how you can control spreadsheet risk.

Contact