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sepa-logo[1].jpgA damning article appeared in Die Welt today revealing that despite spending more than a million Euros on trying to educate the German public on SEPA, they aren’t prepared for the upcoming event scheduled for February 2014.

Like 1/1/2000 you could hear the arguments that it is a storm in the proverbial teacup or perhaps it will be solved by IT and all blow over. That may all be true but the fact of the matter is that many IT professionals will remember the hand wringing and sleepless night associated with the lead up to the rollover to the new millennium.

Irrespective of whether you believe the gloom and doom pictures painted by the industry gurus, the reality is that something will need to be done and SAP systems are just the tip of the iceberg. I outlined back in February some of the things that you could look at in a Winshuttle blog including references to notes and SCN threads that you can take a look at but there have been a number of good articles since and prior to that which will give you some clues on what you need to do.

Philippe Dekyvere also summarises some of the characteristics of the lag associated with IBAN take up in his article on SAP.INFO – he and a number of others are expecting a stampede.

The numbers stated in Die Welt are pretty damning of themselves, only a quarter of the 3.6 million businesses and 580,000 clubs in the country has so far requested a creditor identification number at the Bundesbank at the current take up rate of 30,000 a week, there WILL be a stampede. Although there are suggestions that other European countries are ahead of the curve on adoption of what Die Welt refers to as the ’22-digit monster’ (other countries have a different length monster) – feedback that I have received from some Winshuttle partners suggests that many companies are still holding with a ‘wait and see’ approach. If you’re employed on the payroll of a company in Western Europe and haven’t yet been asked about a change in bank account numbers, now is probably a good time to do it.

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