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Issue #22 April 30th, 2020
This monthly newsletter provides essential Service Management and ServiceNow information.

Change Management - What's Your Role?

Change Management (also known as Change Enablement) is the process of managing requests for changes to IT services. Types of changes include system, hardware or software maintenance, upgrades, etc; anything that could impact service availability and functionality. The change management process includes the review, scheduling, and tracking of each request. 

Change Requests go through multiple states during the Change process, requiring actions from numerous staff. Do you know what your role is in the Change process? 

  • The Change Owner is the person identified in the Assigned to field. The Change Owner is the only person that can approve, withdraw, or close the change request.

  •  Assignment group members can reassign the change request if needed, including to themself so they can work the change.

  • The Assessor is responsible for ensuring the accuracy of the Change Request content during the Assessment state. The Assessor (or their Alternate) can make needed adjustments and approve the Change Request. The Assessor is the Manager of the Assignment Group. The Alternate Assessor is a back-up, in case the Assessor is unable to work the Change Request.

  • The Business Approver ensures that a valid reason for the change exists, that it has been tested, it does not create conflicts, the staff is ready to support the change and that it has been communicated to our clients. 

  • Change Advisory Board (CAB) members are those who attend the CAB meetings. Their role is to review and provide feedback on change requests and mitigate any possible organizational conflicts (e.g., updating a financial system on the day student payments are due).

  • CAB Delegate Is the backup representative for the Change Owner at CAB meetings.

  • Change Managers are members of the UIT Change Management team who assist with the CAB process by vetting change requests for requirements and completeness before the requests are submitted for CAB approval. 

More information about Change Management can be found at change.stanford.edu,  Change Management Roles and Responsibilities and in the Service Management Toolkit.

Larry Dillard, Maria Bedolla-Matta, Thuylynh Nguyen -  UIT Change Managers

 

Tips and Tricks

Use Classification Codes to Manage and Improve Your Service

Incidents are unplanned interruptions to a service or reduction in its quality. If you can’t access your email, or video isn’t working on your Zoom meeting, you are experiencing a service Incident. Classification Codes are one of the many components of a Service Offering* that support the Incident process. Other components include instructions on how to route a ticket, who can approve change requests, and how to handle an Incident after-hours. 

Classification Codes are used by the service desk to classify an Incident when closing a ticket. For example, if a video camera was the cause of a reported Incident, the service desk staff might select “Video Camera Repair” as the Classification Code. The real power of Classification Codes is in their use with Incident Management reports. In our example, a report would show all Incidents based on a classification code of “Video Camera Repair.” If there was only one Incident in the past month, no further work would be required. However, numerous video camera incidents would prompt further investigation. 

In summary, Classification Codes and Incident Management reporting are invaluable tools in managing and maintaining service health.

Best practices for creating and using Classification Codes include:

  • Include Classification Codes when you establish a new Service Offering in ServiceNow. You can also add them to existing Service Offerings. 
  • Create Classification Codes that are simple, clear, and meaningful to your service.
  • Limit Classification Codes to a maximum of five or six for your service - any more than that and support staff will be challenged to find the right one.
  • Run monthly incident reports and look for trends or actionable information.
  • Develop and execute remediation and improvement plans.
*Service Offerings are also known as Configuration Items (CI). Service Offerings are stored in the Configuration Management Database.

Michelle Collette, Sr. Service Management Consulting Partner, Service Strategy

Resources

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