Most project managers attempt to meet project objectives by following established methodologies. This seems like a solid approach on the surface, but what happens when changes unfold? One of the main reasons projects fail is because new risk parameters are not introduced once changes have been implemented. This is something that more businesses should be paying a greater amount of attention to.
What is change management?
Change management is a critical component of successful project management. This is a strategic and structured approach to controlling, adapting, and effecting change. It can be a challenging process, particularly when managing complex projects in multinational businesses, as there are numerous problems that can affect planned changes, for instance, cross-cultural issues.
You need to document change management
As change management is a formal process, you must put together a written document. You cannot use standardized documents, as all projects differ in size and scope. However, there some key elements that simply must be included across all industries, businesses, and project types, and these are as follows:
Change management goals
You need to outline the objectives of the change management plan and the benefits of putting it into place. For example, the plan may be intended to efficiently assess, approve, and track changes.
Change management model
This is a critical part of the document, which will outline the change management process. You must detail how changes will be assessed, who is authorized to approve change requests, and how they are going to be recorded.
The plan should outline the roles and responsibilities of everyone on the project team. For instance, who is going to evaluate the proposed changes? Who will be responsible for communicating project changes?
Change request forms and logs
Your document should include examples of a project change request form and the project management tracking log.
Project scope change
The scope is often impacted when there are project changes, and so you must outline how the project scope will absorb any approved changes. You should also provide clear instructions on how project priorities will be re-assessed.
Project schedule change
Provide details regarding under what circumstances schedule baselines will be changed, and when and how your project team will go about them. You also need to make sure that any third-parties are informed of the changes so that they can implement them. A lot of businesses outsource certain elements of their company today, such as a 24 hour answering service, and so if you do not make sure that everyone across the whole company is aware of the changes you are going to be putting into place, it can result in a few problems.
Project cost change
Finally, outline how your project budget will be amended when responding to a project change, as well as how cost baselines will be impacted.
If you need help with your change management document or you require expert advice on other project management services, consult experts who can help you manage the process.