A YEAR OR TWO from now, the administration of Mayor Barry may not be all that pleased to uncover misdeeds and wastefulness in city government. But right now, such discoveries are part of the politically satisfying fun a new team can have when it inherits an ossified bureaucracy, and the result is a change - at least for the time being - in the way city hall reacts to troubles. Instead of the old vague "we're-looking-into-it" statement, administration officials have been conducting prompt investigations, disciplining employees and changing policies wehre necessary. Some examples:

Sidney Glee, in his first week as special assistant to new housing director Robert L. Moore, was asked to investigate what the city stocked in its warehouses. Among the discoveries were more than 100 new stoves still in packing cartons, new windows, doors and kitchen cabinets - all unaccounted for and all in demand for public housing tenants. Mr. Moore has ordered inventory improvements and action against employees responsible for the mess.

After a fire that kill 10 women at a boarding home, inspectors checked 77 facilities, cited violations and reinspected. From now no, a permanent force of inspectors will check each four or five times a year. In addition, a department was reprimanded and an inspector suspended, demoted and transferred.

In the wake of cases involving alleged sexual misconduct by department heads and other officials, the administration issued an order making sexual harassment on the job a violation of city laws and setting investigatory procedures.

After complaints from a squad of detectives about a deputy chief, the mayor appointed an investigative panel, which found that the deputy had made a recial slur. The deputy was relieved of his command and the investigation of the other complaints continues.

City Administrator Elijah B. Rogers, who has gained a reputation as a no-nonsense No. 2 man in the executive branch, has requested every agency to report regularly on its problems and has a special productivity unit charged with making spot checks. Obviously, none of this guarantees that the city government will move like clockwork or that the new administration will continue to share its findings of wrongdoing with the public. But for now, at least the attempt at more open, swift response to complaints from within its ranks and from others has been therapeutic.