ITIL change management process

Everything You Should Know About ITIL’s Change Control Procedure


A Simple, But Detailed Guide – ITIL Change Management Process Overview

Change control in project management is designed to mitigate negative impacts during a change in a software or IT system.

Change control in software engineering can help avoid a major problem with one feature update breaking other capabilities. Using a formal IT and engineering change request for internal IT system changes, helps organizations avoid unnecessary downtime to unintended consequences of a change in technology systems.

It’s important to implement change request management to minimize risk and improve change effectiveness. The way that many organizations do this is through the adoption of the ITIL change management process flow.


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What is ITIL Change Management?

ITIL is a framework that provides a holistic approach to service management. The current version is ITIL v4, and it is designed to facilitate digital transformation through a systematic sequence of steps and ITIL change management best practices.

ITIL is short for IT Infrastructure Library. The ITIL change request process and framework includes 34 specific practices that are grouped into three categories. These are:

  • General Management Practices
  • Service Management Practices
  • Technical Management Practices

You’ll find things like a change request form template, change control definition, and change control process flow contained in the middle category – Service Management Practices.


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What is Change Management in ITIL Process?

The ITIL change management process is a step-by-step system put in place to ensure any change order request is evaluated thoroughly and implemented in an orderly fashion.

If a change control form isn’t filled out completely, it can mean that the team doing the ITIL change impact assessment could miss a vital negative impact from the change. As a result, the organization could suffer from downtime, lost business, and other costs.

The project change control process ensures that all the “boxes are checked” for a smooth deployment of a change, that the change is actually needed, and that any risk is mitigated as the change is enabled.

What are the types of change requests in projects? They can include things like a new feature request or an urgent fix for a security vulnerability or newly identified bug.

Project change control is one of those things that needs to be included in a change control policy and taught to your software and IT development teams. This helps you ensure that changes aren’t being made to the technology environment that haven’t been cleared and thoroughly tested.

IT change management software can help you keep track of things like ITIL change impact assessment. This is where you identify what areas of the organization will be impacted by a change.

You can use a change management template Excel or cloud tool, such as the AGS 360 Change Impact Assessment toolkit to provide insightful reporting on which areas of the organization will be impacted the most.

ITIL change management process

The automated reporting in the AGS IT change management platform provides comprehensive visualizations automatically as you implement your change request management.

Do you have any questions about ITIL change management software, types of engineering change control, or ITIL change management tools? Reach out and let us know!


ITIL Change Management Process Flow

Before we look at the ITIL change control process in project management, let’s define the change request meaning.

A change request is a request for some type of change in a technology system. This could be a software product that the organization provides to customers. It could also be a non-software company’s own internal IT systems.

A change request form example could be the addition of API integration for a new application.

Knowing the change request meaning is important so you can identify it when looking at a change management form template in IT change management tools.

Whether you use an Excel change management template or a change control management software in the cloud, the change order request form (also known as a project change request form) will be the thing that initiates the change control process flow.


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ITIL Change Management Tool | Process Flow

  • Change request template form is received
  • The change request form is evaluated. This can include determining:
    • The necessity of the change order request
    • Timing to add to a change control template
    • ITIL change impact assessment (what systems/groups are being impacted and how?)
    • Priority for the change control procedure
    • Risks associated with the project change request
    • Resources needed to carry out the ITIL change request
  • The IT, system, or engineering change request is then either approved or denied

If the change order request form is approved, then the change control policy will be followed to implement that change. It’s helpful if you use a change control software or change management template Excel sheet to document each step of the change control system and each change control form received.

Documenting every change request form example ensures security, efficiency, and reduces rework or redundant requests.

If the change request in project management is approved, then the project change control process will continue as follows:

  • Review the change request form template and prioritize the work
  • Create a plan for implementation and timing of the change that’s been approved from the project change request form.
  • Implement the requested change and do post-implementation testing to identify any potential problems.
  • Document the steps taken and test findings in your ITIL change management software.
  • Officially close out the IT or engineering change control process.

Change management form template overview of the ITIL change management process flow.

Are you looking for software to facilitate change control in project management? AGS has IT change management tools that enable a detailed ITIL change impact assessment with automated impact reporting.


What Are the 4 Types of Change Requests in Projects per ITIL v4 Change Control Management?

There are four main types of change requests in projects when you use prioritization in ITIL.  

It’s vital to prioritize each change request template you receive because you could be juggling several at a time. An orderly change control management process means knowing which changes are most urgent and which can wait and possibly be timed with a larger feature update.

The 4 types of requests you’ll be dealing with in a change request process include:

  • Standard: This is a frequent, straightforward, and expected change request that does not require additional authorization.
  • Normal: This is an important project change request that requires review and authorization.
  • Major: This is considered a high-risk IT, software, or engineering change request that needs a detailed ITIL change impact assessment before being approved.
  • Emergency: This is an urgent change control request that resolves a specific problem. This type of request has a high failure risk due to the speed needed for implementation. It needs to be approved as soon as possible.

Do you have any questions about change control management, the change request process, or what’s expected in the change control procedure? Reach out and let us know!


ITIL Change Management Best Practices

Taking a change request in project management through all the proper steps in a change control procedure can be more efficient when using best practices. These optimize your change request management and ensure that no time is wasted either implementing changes that aren’t needed or dealing with unintended negative impacts.

Here are 6 ITIL change management best practices to follow when processing a change control template or form.


Ensure Each Change Request Form Has the “Why” Clearly Defined

There needs to be a clear change control definition of why a change is being requested for you to evaluate both the necessity and the priority.

When using a cloud-based or Excel change management template for your change control form for requests, be sure to include an area for the reason the request is being made.

Assign a Priority In the Change Request Process

You want to adhere to the four types of requests in a change control system, so you can prioritize work and approvals accordingly. All changes should not be treated as urgent or emergencies.

The priority of the request is something you’ll want to include in your ITIL change management tool or change control management software. This could be done by adding a dropdown on the row where the change request is being cataloged.

Example: If you are using the AGS change management platform to manage impact assessment for a change request template, you can add your own column called “ITIL Change Request Type”

Change request in project management

Conduct an ITIL Change Impact Assessment

When you are doing change control in software engineering or for a non-software company, it’s important to assess the impact of that change. This helps you identify risks associated with implementing the request and the areas of your organization impacted so you can mitigate issues.

Use KPI’s & Metrics to Identify Project Change Request Risk

It’s best to use KPIs and metrics to guide your “go” or “no go” decisions when evaluating an IT or engineering change request. Use something like the AGS ITIL change management tools to help you generate insightful reports automatically.

Define All Roles & Responsibilities in the Change Control System

Don’t leave anything in the change control in project management process up to chance. Clearly define all roles and responsibilities for who is handling each step.

Follow-up After the Change to Verify Expected Impacts & Successful Implementation

Once the request on the change control template is put in place, your job isn’t done. You should verify success with thorough testing and ensure there are no unexpected detrimental impacts.

Officially Close the Change Request in Project Management Software/Systems

Close the change request form template in your IT change management software, so you can check all steps as completed and move on to the next request.

Do you have any questions about the change control process in project management? Would you like a demo of AGS software specific to the change control process flow? Please reach out and let us know.


Get Help Assessing Change Using a Change Request Template and Change Control Software

Process Impact Assessment Template

The AGS Change Impacts Assessment Toolkit can be easily customized for the change control process in project management.

Book a 30-minute demo of the AGS change impact assessment template, and note that you want to learn about using it for impact assessments for project change control.


Agile Change Management Plan FAQ

What is change management in ITIL process?

The ITIL change management process is a step-by-step system put in place to ensure any change order request is evaluated thoroughly and implemented in an orderly fashion. The project change control process ensures thing all the “boxes are checked” for a smooth deployment of a change, that the change is actually needed, and that any risk is mitigated as the change is enabled.

What are the four types of changes as per ITIL v4?

There are four main types of change requests in projects when you use prioritization in ITIL. • Standard: A frequent and straightforward change request that does not require additional authorization. • Normal: This is an important project change request that requires review and authorization. • Major: A high-risk IT, software, or engineering change request that needs a detailed ITIL change impact assessment before being approved. • Emergency: An urgent change control request that resolves a specific problem. This type of request has a high failure risk due to the speed needed for implementation. It needs to be approved as soon as possible.

What is a change control document?

A change control document provides a place to handle change request management. Each change request is documented, and a list of steps is laid out to facilitate the change request process from start to finish. This helps eliminate potential problems and ensures orderly change control in project management for each change request.

Why do we need change management?

Answer: Change control management is a vital piece of project success. Changes will often impact other areas of technology infrastructure or users in an organization. If that change isn’t managed, it can cause potential downtime and users may not end up adopting the change.


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