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What is Change Control?

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Change control is the process of documenting, evaluating, prioritizing and implementing changes to a project, product or process. This is designed to provide stability to manage risk and achieve objectives within constraints such as budget and deadlines.


It is common for a large number of ideas for changing projects, products and processes to flow at all times. If everyone's idea was immediately implemented quality would fail, projects would never be completed and risks would create a chaotic and unstable environment.
Change control is a process of freely documenting ideas for change but only implementing those that are most critical. The process also ensures that changes are scheduled at a time that makes sense and implemented via a controlled and diligent process.
It is common for a high percentage of the change requests submitted to change control to never be implemented. This may be achieved with a prioritization system or outright rejection of changes.

Change Control vs Change Management

The terms change control and change management are applied to similar processes in areas such as project management, quality management and service management. Such processes may have procedural differences between them but serve the same purpose of providing stability, transparency and control.
The term change management is also used for a completely separate practice that involves leading change.
Overview: Change Control
The process of capturing, evaluating, prioritizing and implementing requirements for change.
Establish stability to manage risk and achieve objectives.
Provide transparency such that stakeholders don't feel their requirements are being ignored.
Related Concepts

Project Management

This is the complete list of articles we have written about project management.
Acceptance Criteria
Acceptance Testing
Actual Cost
Basis Of Estimate
Behavioral Requirements
Burndown Chart
Change Control
Change Control Board
Change Fatigue
Change Request
Concept Note
Cone Of Uncertainty
Corrective Action
Cost Baseline
Cost Contingency
Cost Control
Cost Overrun
Cost Variance
Defect Density
Definition Of Done
Document Control
Earned Value
Estimate At Completion
Estimate To Complete
Feasibility Analysis
Fudge Factor
Full-Time Equivalent
Human Factors
Issue Management
Lead Time
Lessons Learned
Level Of Effort
Opportunity Study
Out Of Scope
Parametric Estimate
Phased Implementation
Planned Value
Program Management
Project Charter
Project Communication
Project Complexity
Project Concept
Project Controls
Project Failure
Project Goals
Project Management
Project Metrics
Project Planning
Project Productivity
Project Proposal
Project Risk
Regression Testing
Requirements Quality
Return On Investment
Risk Register
Schedule Baseline
Schedule Chicken
Scope Baseline
Scope Creep
Set Up To Fail
Smoke Testing
Stakeholder Management
Statement Of Work
Story Points
Use Case
User Stories
Variance Analysis
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