Volkswagen and the over-riding of SAM

For those that might have been living under a rock for the last fortnight, Volkswagen have been found guilty (and have admitted their guilt) in regards to installing software in their engines that could alter the performance of the engine in the event that it detected an emissions test was being undertaken.

Its share price has been savaged, the CEO has resigned, and the talk of numerous law suits could have eye-watering consequences to their bottom line.

The US head of VW held his hands up and said “we screwed up”; but wasn’t so apologetic that he couldn’t continue to introduce the latest VW model at a car show, quickly followed up by a very animated welcome for Lenny Kravitz performing live! (Thank you John Oliver)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ByRk-Ohn6uU

Stiff upper lips are clearly being maintained, but this sorry saga leaves a range of questions unanswered:

Where was the VW CIO in all of this?
Where was the VW IT department in all of this?
Where was the due-diligence of the other car manufacturers who used the VW engine as the main power unit for millions of their cars also?
Where were the worker councils who sit alongside the business leaders of Volkswagen to say that this wasn’t a sound business decision?

Those who regularly tune in to the blogs on SAM Charter will undoubtedly know where I am going with this, but not only was their an absence of version and edition control in respect of the software being sold with these cars, their also had to be company-wide collusion to see such software onto the marketplace via the cars sold.

This sorry tale speaks as much about VW’s inability to act honourably in business as it does about their wilful disregard of software management.

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