Definition of Change Management Plan

The Change Management Plan is used to describe the process for dealing with changes within the project. The Change Management plan will specify how changes are requested, usually via a Change Request form. The plan will specify what information will be captured by the Change Request and who can generate such a request.

The Need of a Change Management Plan

A change management plan helps manage the change process, and ensures control in budget, schedule, scope, communication, and resources. The change management plan will minimize the impact a change can have on the business, employees, customers, and other important stakeholders.

When change is going to impact the business operations a change management plan is needed to avoid disrupting workflow and to help support the team through this change.

Why is Change management plan so important?

The benefits of change management plan allow you to:

  • assess and understand the need and the impact of change
  • align resources within the business to support the change
  • manage the diverse cost of change
  • reduce the time needed to implement change
  • support staff and help them understand the change process
  • plan and execute an effective communication strategy
  • maintain the routine in the running of your business during change
  • maintain or even increase productivity and efficiency
  • reduce stress and anxiety associated with change
  • reduce disruptive aspects and risks associated with change
  • respond to challenges more efficiently
  • minimize the possibility of change failure

The 7 R’s of Change Management

  1. The reason behind the change?
  2. Risks involved in the requested change
  3. Resources required to deliver the change
  4. Who raised the change request?
  5. Return required from the change
  6. Who is responsible for creating, testing, and implementing the change?
  7. Relationship between suggested change and other changes?

The reason behind the change?

Why was the change requested by the management or the project manager related to the project? What was the reason behind this change request? No matter what the reason for the change request, the entity that is filling for change must present a credible evidence trail or persuasive argument to support the push for change.

The evidence must submit to the board so that they may investigate and approve the change request.

Risks involved in the requested change?

What are the risks associated with the changes that have been proposed in the change management process? We must understand that there is a risk associated with literally everything included in the project development process. The question is how much risk you are going to allow for the change to take place smoothly without a detrimental effect to the organization.

Resources required to deliver the change?

What are the resources required to administer the change the project manager is proposing? Whenever we talk about the project development process, we think about the budget and the resource bank available for the project to be a definite success.

Who raised the change request?

One thing you need to make sure in the very start of the change management process is to get to know the person that raised the change request. They have the evidence to support the change request process.

Return required from the change?

Check the returns you may get from every change being incorporated. This can be done by making a list of all the plus and minus points from the change. The outcome of the change may be clearer this way.

Who is responsible for creating, testing, and implementing the change?

One thing you need to make sure of is to find the right person that is going to oversee the creation, testing, and implementation of the change that you are trying to propose.

Relationship between suggested change and other changes?

You need to find out about the relationship between the change that you are proposing and all the other changes that are around your change management process. Once you complete all these dependencies then change may be incorporated.

Conclusion

For any changes in a project to be running smoothly, we need to understand the reason behind the change, basically all its requirements in detail. That is why a Change Management Plan is important. It serves as a guide to ensure the change takes place smoothly.

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