We thought it would be fun to offer some thoughts on common IUID SNAFUS we have encountered. This is not to be cynical; many organizations have gotten it right and are reaping the benefits.

Instead it is presented as a cautionary for those who ignore business rules and best practices and go on to bake a nice IUID “failure pie.” Follow this recipe and you are sure to serve up many warm slices to your organization.

1. Ignore the big picture – the initial plan for failure
Pour in generous amounts of ignoring the big picture. In fact, don’t worry about the concept of IUID sustainment at all. As new items roll into your operations from subcontractors or suppliers, you won’t know if an IUID exists, and if it does exist, if it will scan to MIL STD 130. Que sera, sera.

2. Don’t bother with trying to leverage IUID, just slap it on the item willy-nilly and call it a day.
Mix in some slap it on and be done with it. Sure, you’d have to change your current information systems to support an IUID data element, but that just seems like extra work, so skip it.

3. Ignore the fact that some OEMs are getting it wrong causing you to receive bad IUIDs into your operation.
For best results, combine the ingredients above while ignoring OEMs and suppliers who produce erroneous labels. Maybe if you wait this thing out, it will just go away.

4. Manage it all with a spreadsheet.
This is my favorite ingredient so layer this on thickly. Isn’t a spreadsheet just as good as a database after all? It’s certainly easier to setup and to change the data. What the heck, just continue to run your entire operation on a spreadsheet; it’s worked since the 80’s, hasn’t it?

5. Keep your IT department out of it.
Finally, sprinkle on some leaving IT in the dark. I know that you’ve been waiting for an opportunity to contact your IT department. They’re always so helpful, why wouldn’t you want to involve them? Is it because they’ll double the length of your meetings and mire you in questions and roadblocks that keep you burning the midnight oil?

While this recipe is tongue-in-cheek (bad pun) it is used all too often and invariably results in a side helping of humble pie for the cook.