Whenever a product development company across any industry vertical is establishing a new PLM platform or revamping their existing system, change management is usually right at the forefront and in the mix. Having the right strategy, vision and implementation is critical to driving efficiencies, quality and compliance.
As you think through your strategy, you need to consider some of the following topics:
- If you’re a global company, with many business segments, and disparate processes, should you consolidate in one single global process or allow for some variance across segments?
- As you initiate your change process, when is the right time in the lifecycle to begin the Change Request process? Right at the beginning, after prototype phase, or after production release?
- When you extend changes beyond PLM from a digital thread standpoint, into ERP, what is your phase in/out strategy? How will you manage effectivity of that change? Can effectivity be different by plant or make center? Should you change your effectivity date from what was originally planned on the change?
- As you look further across the digital thread, including CRM, MES and CPQ, how does change management flow across? Do you have different change processes by system or do you leverage a single enterprise change process across all systems? Do you leverage a change orchestration approach and leverage change objects within each system?
- Does one size fit all or do you need a few key ones such as a Major Change process vs a Minor Change or even a Fast Track change?
- What type of revision schema should you use? Alpha, numeric, a mix? How would this decision affect your data migration and cleansing strategy? Should all changes require a revision increment or can you have a no-rev change?
- How do streamline your reviewer process to insure the right functions are given the opportunity to conduct an impact assessment? Is there a way to automate this notification process through key product information? How do you effectively differentiate between Reviewers and Approvers?
- Companies have a long history of changes for their products. How essential is it to keep your change history? Is change history an area of interest for auditors? How accessible does change history information need to be?
These are just a handful of topics and criteria your company should be thinking about when you’re working on an initiative on change management. Stay tuned for the next part in my change series that will share guidance on each one of these areas.
What other considerations do you think about for change management strategy? Please share your inputs..