In the shadows of Satyam Computer Services’ growing ethics and accounting scandal, one of its competitors has drafted an IT Bill of Rights that outline a universal set of best practices.

Alliance Global Services, a U.S.-based software solutions firm with operations in India, says its goal is to restore trust in IT service providers, according to PRNewswire.

As reported in Insurance Networking News on January 23, insurers such as State Farm and CIGNA have already taken action to salvage various operations under Satyam’s control. Meanwhile, competitors such as Alliance are coming forward with various offerings to help the insurance and other industries manage through the uncertainty.

Designed to create consistent and concrete expectations that the entire industry can agree upon and adhere to, Alliance’s initial IT Bill of Rights draft follows:

•    The right to demand transparency throughout every step of an engagement— from sales to contracting to delivery and termination
•    The right to fully understand the nature and character of their IT partner and the service that it provides to them
•    The right to fully understand the financial viability of their IT partner
•    The right to be made aware of any impending legal charges against their IT partner, should they arise, as soon as they occur
•    The right to arrive at a mutually agreed upon definition of the term trusted partner
•    The right to expect a clear contract that defines fees and expenses upfront before any agreement is signed
•    The right to terminate a relationship with no financial penalty in the event of any admitted fraudulent activity
•    The right to demand the existence of a truly independent board of advisors
•    The right to expect the presence of an independent financial auditor accompanied by a set of checks and balances
•    The right to demand accountability for any actions taken within the scope of a technology project or as part of a firm's broader business practices

"The nature of this scandal has left many companies that leverage offshore vendors anxious about the credibility of their service providers, and we believe this Bill of Rights will go a long way in restoring trust and accountability," says John Castleman, president and CEO of Alliance Global Services. "Based on the groundswell of support we are getting from all corners of the industry, it's clear that standards like these are long overdue. Not only are we proud to lead the charge on this, but we're excited to work with the rest of the industry to create positive change and make sure something like this doesn't happen again."

Alliance has posted the IT Bill of Rights on the website www.ITBillofRights.org with the hope that fellow IT services firms will provide feedback, and ultimately adopt the bill as a new set of industry-standard rules of engagement. The goal is to secure more than 100,000 signatures, and use the Bill of Rights as a platform to establish a global ethics consortium for IT service providers.

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