How does the change management process at your organization work? Is it rigorously enforced or more of an optional step based on whether or not you have time to document what you’ve done? Perhaps you are one of those organizations that that are compelled by regulatory standards to properly track and report change but still have issues due to the manual nature of the process or unpredictable behavior caused by unauthorized/unplanned changes?
There’s no doubt that proper change control brings big benefits to the business. It’s not just about reporting change, it’s about making sure that the changes that are made are authorized, will not interfere with the business and that if mistakes are made and outages occur that the cause can be quickly tracked down and the impacting change addressed.
So what’s the answer, how can we make sure it’s not us (IT) that disrupts the business through poor change management processes? Well to be successful organizations need an automated and integrated approach to change management.
Automated is good as a change policy can be put in place and that policy will always be implemented, there is no room for manual errors or forgetting to create change requests in the first place.
The integrated approach brings other benefits. For example, embedding and exposing the change approval mechanism inside the toolsets that your organization uses to make changes (for example server or network configuration solutions) means those users of those toolsets natively understand the relationship between the task they are performing and the status of the change request that has been generated.
When it comes to troubleshooting issues or outages, if there is integration between the monitoring tools and the change management system, any incidents that are raised against a piece of infrastructure are automatically enriched with information detailing all the different changes that have recently occurred on that component, greatly reducing the time it takes to identify the root cause of a problem and fix it.
If all this sounds interesting and you can relate to some of the challenges listed above, take a look at BMC’s continuous compliance solutions which integrate our Bladelogic automation solutions to service desks and monitoring solutions.
Never make an unplanned, undocumented and potentially dangerous change ever again!