International Project Management Day




Change Control Form


Quick Summary
Screenshot A form for requesting and documenting changes to the project (e.g. adding new features) or to elements within the project (such as changing a major spec of a piece of a system, product, or other deliverable). Includes fields for impact of the proposed change on the project timeline, budget etc., and on the components of the project deliverables.


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What this is

A form for documenting a change someone is requesting be made to a project or to a system, product, or service being delivered by a project. The form's sections provide space to:

  • Describe the change, the reason for it, and what the change would affect in terms of project deliverables and documentation, as well as what resource time would be needed to implement and validate the change.
  • Track all the change impacts to completion (major implementation tasks and document updates).
  • Officially sign off on the change.


Why it's useful

Projects are often plagued by scope creep – changes get made with out review, adding to the work of the project and sometimes delaying the schedule, increasing the costs, or causing late issues to arise. Companies use change control to make sure the impact of any proposed change to the project definition, or specific components of the project (such as hardware or software deliverables, or a business process associated with a service) are thoroughly understood, carefully considered, and formally approved in some fashion. The change control form in this template file shows the type of information the team should get on a proposed change to fully understand its impact. The goal is to ensure that the impact of any change is well understood, carefully considered, and consciously approved, rather than executed as ad hoc changes that could jeopardize the project's success.

Change control usually grows more stringent as a project progresses, in order to protect the project against late, disruptive changes.


How to use it

Establish a process by which changes will be proposed and reviewed using the change control form. The process should ensure that proposed changes are reviewed frequently enough to keep the project moving. The details of each section of the form should be customized for your project types and project deliverables – i.e., for what the output of your projects is, whether product, system, service, etc. Provide the form to team members and others who might need to submit a change. This form can also be used when you are using contractors or outside firms to do work on your project. In this case, that outside party would be required to provide the information relevant to the work they're performing. Identify who should be involved in reviewing various types of changes. Document that in simple guidelines. After the impacts have been considered, use the bottom portion of the form to document the decision on this change: approved or not, and why. The signature lines at the bottom become the official signoff on that decision. File the change forms as important project records.


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Related Templates
Guideline for a Simple Change Control Process
A simple set of guidelines a team can use to indicate which project documents should be put under project/program level change control and when it should happen. This process was created by an IT organization, but is applicable to any group.

Configuration Management Plan
A Configuration Management Plan attempts to avoid lost time and expensive rework by documenting procedures the project team will use to control critical components of their project's "products"—hardware, software, documentation, written products, etc.

Impact Analysis
When considering a project change or a particular solution, or choosing between multiple possible solutions, it helps to have a thorough understanding of how each option will impact business areas, systems, and external organizations. Will it add to the development time? Will it require additional training, or reduce turnaround times? An Impact Analysis will help you correlate all those variables and determine the best course of action.

Issue Resolution Status Report
Format for reporting progress on resolving project or technical issues.

Recommendation Template
A well organized recommendation format ensures all stakeholders and decision makers have all the information they need.



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