OIT Change Management FAQ

  • What is the OIT Change Management process?
    OIT Change Management is set of tools, procedures and best practices designed to enhance the reliability of how we deploy changes to OIT services.
  • Does OIT Change Management follow ITIL best practices?
    OIT change management is more of a coordination vehicle than the sort of process described in the Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL) framework. For example, the CAB doesn’t review the technical merits of a change, only the timing and potential risks.

OIT CHANGE ADVISORY BOARD

  • What is the OIT CAB?
    The OIT Change Advisory Board (CAB) was established to reduce the risk of negative outcomes resulting from service changes. For example, incompatible changes happening at the same time or changes that will impact users during particularly sensitive times. To accomplish this goal, the CAB reviews proposed service changes and then discusses any issues that are identified.
  • How is the CAB membership determined?
    The CAB is a body composed of individuals—mostly managers—that were assigned to the CAB by the OIT Unit Directors. The CAB membership should represent all areas in OIT that might have a stake in deployments, planned maintenance or other service changes. Sometimes a member represents an individual team and sometimes a member represents a group of teams.
  • How does the CAB communicate internally?
    All CAB representatives are members of a Google Group (group-oit-cab). Requests for Change submitted in the OIT Change Management System are sent to the Google Group to allow CAB members to review the change prior to the next weekly CAB meeting. Membership in the CAB Google Group is also open to anyone else that would like to participate.
  • How does the CAB communicate externally?
    The OIT CAB hosts a change calendar on the web that is visible to the NC State campus community. A reminder of the change calendar is posted to SysNews on a monthly basis. Individual changes can be opened to view more detail. Note that not all change requests—and not all information within published change requests—are publicly visible due to security concerns.

REQUESTS FOR CHANGE

  • What is a Request For Change?
    A Request For Change (RFC) is a record within the OIT Change Management System that documents pertinent details about proposed changes to OIT services. The information contained in an RFC should be sufficient for the members of the CAB to understand the nature of the proposed change and the associated risks.
  • Who can submit an RFC?
    Anyone in OIT is authorized to submit an RFC, but an account in the QuickBase environment is required to do so. If you do not have an account and would like to submit a change request, please send an email to oit_or@help.ncsu.edu.
  • What kind of activity requires submission of an RFC?
    The standard for submitting an RFC is “Does your proposed activity have the potential to adversely affect another team in OIT?” If the answer is “yes” then submit a change request. Note that “another team” includes the NCSU Help Desk, and by extension the entire NC State community.
    This standard for submitting an RFC does give the CAB members lot of autonomy to decide when to submit an RFC. The CAB learns by doing. If an unsubmitted change causes problems outside of the originating team then the CAB uses the event as an opportunity to discuss what should and should not be submitted.
  • When am I required to submit an RFC?
    If you believe that a planned activity has the potential to adversely affect another team in OIT—including the Help Desk—then seriously consider submitting an RFC. Indications that you should consider submitting an RFC include “Will I publish a SysNews post informing campus about this activity?” and “Does this activity have the potential to cause an outage to a production service?”
  • Do all RFCs need to be reviewed by the CAB?
    If the scope of the activity is very small and the change will not result in a service outage then submit the change request with a “Minor” Classification. Minor RFCs serve as an “FYI” to the CAB members – no formal review by the CAB is required. (This is similar to ITIL’s “standard” change, but less formally defined.)
  • What is an Emergency Change?
    Any change that must be implemented prior to the next regularly scheduled CAB meeting and is not classified as “Minor” is considered an “emergency” change.
  • Are all RFCs publicly visible?
    No. Only change requests that are marked “Publish” are publicly visible. Otherwise a request will not be visible to individuals outside of OIT. Further, only the top section of a published change request is publically visible.
  • How do I submit an RFC?
    Change requests are submitted using the OIT Change Management System application, which is hosted within the QuickBase environment. The “Enter New Change Request” button is in the top right corner of the OIT Change Management System homepage.
  • What is the OIT Change Management System?
    The OIT Change Management System is an application developed by OIT and hosted within the QuickBase environment. The main purpose of the application is to record and process RFCs and facilitate CAB meetings.
  • How do I access the OIT Change Management System?
    The OIT Change Management System is a web application accessible using most modern web browsers. It is accessible from both on and off of campus.