Change management ITIL® is a part of the Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL®) that relates to how changes to information technology (IT) products and services may be controlled, managed, and released into the live environment. ITIL® is a registered trademark of the United Kingdom Office of Government Commerce (OGC), and is widely recognized in many countries as a definitive approach to managing and delivering IT services. ITIL® management has often been shown to deliver wide ranging benefits to organizations that implement the process, through reduced costs, increased customer satisfaction, improved efficiency and productivity, and better use of staff skills.
In the ITIL® service management lifecycle, one of the central key topics of importance is change management. ITIL® service delivery provides a robust change management process that aims to provide standard procedures and methods for handling changes to the IT service system. When an ITIL® manager implements a change management process, ITIL® goals also focus on keeping to a minimum the potential negative impact that any change may have on the IT service and on live business operations.
The initial stages of the change management ITIL® process may consist of some of the following elements: recording and raising change requests, assessing the potential benefits, risks, impacts, and costs of proposed changes, developing appropriate business cases for changes, and obtaining business approval to proceed with such changes. Subsequent activities may include the management and co-ordination of change development and implementation, reporting on and documenting the implementation of changes, and performing final reviews and closure of change request records.
The scope of the change management ITIL® framework typically includes changes to all of the following components of an IT service: hardware components; software components; communication devices and the associate hardware and software; and documents and processes used in the delivery, support, and management of the IT service. As the ITIL® guidelines cover IT service delivery and operation, changes made in the scope of a development project do not typically go through the change management ITIL® procedure, but are generally processed through a separate project change mechanism. A key recommendation of the change management ITIL® guidelines is that all relevant changes should go through the change management process, such that no unauthorized changes are ever deployed.
In ITIL®, change is controlled and managed. This usually tends to reduce risk and improve the supportability of the IT service. A business using the change management ITIL® process is therefore likely to implement changes smoothly and successfully.