Modern Middle Manager
Primarily my musings on the practical application of technology and management principles at a financial services company.
Change Management

Thursday, November 24, 2005  

We are currently undergoing a couple of routine audits (SAS 70 II and SOX), and one of the holes being pointed out to us is our change management process. It is insufficiently auditable and controlled as far as the examiners are concerned. I believe we're pretty decent for a small division, but SOX 404 does not care. So how do you invent a bureaucracy?

First you start by Googling everything in sight and finding out that there isn't much out there that helps. Most of the papers I looked at were more theoretical than helpful. Software vendors want to sell a solution that's customized just for me. Hey, that's great. What do I really want? Back to square one. Of course, the companies auditing us would love to design a "best practices" change management solution that would cost us an arm and a leg and probably require a full-time person just to manage it. No way.

What am I left with? I started by stealing the change management flowchart out of Microsoft's Operations Framework. The next part is to revise it so it's a bit more streamlined for our 2.5 FTE IT operations group. Finally, after kicking the ideas around with the two senior guys on my staff (and the ones who will have to live with this the most), we've decided to model the standard change process and walk through it on paper. Like paper trading, so we can empirically discover the flaws before I declare it to be The Process by fiat. I prefer to learn by doing, and most of my staff does as well.

posted by Henry Jenkins | 11/24/2005 12:44:00 PM

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