Guide to the Change Management Process
What is a change management process?
Change control processes minimize operational disruptions when changes are introduced into a system, everything from departmental workflow procedures to data technology (IT) environments.
IT change processes stop unauthorized changes and embrace the evaluation of change requests by a change advisory board (CAB).
IT systems have four basic change types:
Normal: A straightforward, low-risk change that doesn’t require CAB approval and uses previously approved implementation documentation.
Normal: A change with system-wide impact and moderate risk that wants CAB approval.
Main: A high-risk change that requires an impact study plus CAB and administration approval.
Emergency: A time-sensitive, high-risk change, typically triggered by a critical event and makes use of an emergency CAB to extend approval speed.
While each change type has its own set of steps primarily based on projected change impact and implementation speed, the normal change process has seven steps. It begins with a change request, analysis of the request, and, if approved, subsequent implementation.
Change management vs. change administration: What’s the distinction?
Change management and change administration are generally used interchangeably, however they are totally different because change control falls under the umbrella of change management. Change management consists of the particular steps to introduce a particular change reminiscent of a software upgrade, patch, or hotfix.
Change administration takes a wider view as one in every of several high-level IT Infrastructure Library (ITIL) processes that improve overall IT service management (ITSM).
ITIL started in the Eighties as a set of best practices for IT departments and is not particular to any particular software or hardware. The distinction between ITIL change management and alter control boils down to scope and specificity.
Had been you weight-reduction plan, for instance, the former would address overall calorie intake, and the perfect balance of protein, carbohydrates, and train, while the latter would comprise particular recipes, meal plans, and workout routines.
Tips on how to create a change control process
Implementing a change control management plan impacts your entire business and requires the participation of a number of stakeholders. Use the five steps under to create and use this process to produce one of the best results.
Step 1: Identify goals
Change for change’s sake will not be a rationale to implement new procedures. Instead, identify your particular goals for instituting a change control process. These explicit targets will help achieve larger purchase-in from stakeholders and provide benchmarks to measure results.
Change management process objectives embody:
Reducing critical incidents, downtime, and software rollbacks from failed deployments
Improving compliance with trade and/or authorities standards and laws
Enhancing the client experience
Improving performance in these areas will lead to a larger overall benefit: a positive impact in your backside line. Without upfront goals and benchmarks, however, you’re working blindly in regards to the impact of your change management process.
Step 2: Define procedures
The hallmark of a well-oiled change control process is consistency: Each small or giant change follows a predefined process from starting to end. Without standardized procedures, you’re no better off than before.
Change control procedures and associated elements to formalize embody:
Change request: Identify data to incorporate equivalent to value, rationale, impact, and alter category (normal, normal, major, or emergency).
Change advisory board (CAB): Set up the number of members and makeup of the CAB, which ought to have representatives from departments outside IT comparable to marketing, accounting, and human resources.
Change analysis: Create an analysis matrix, which can incorporate factors akin to anticipated risk from action versus inaction, price, scope, public notion, and financial repercussions.
Change log: Keep a record of every approved change’s implementation, who carried out it, time to finish, closing cost, and results.
After-action evaluate: Perform a put up-mortem evaluation of each change to find out what worked well, what went fallacious, and what to do the identical or differently. Documenting successful normal adjustments can lead to their reclassification as customary modifications, which do not require CAB approval.
It’s essential to also create accompanying kinds equivalent to a request for change, change log, and after-action evaluate to document every change made and its results. IT administration software allows you to do this on-line, so related parties can easily access and input information.