A change impact assessment gives insight into the potential effects of a proposed change. Knowing what people and processes will be affected by change enables your team to develop a change management plan.
More specifically, a change impact assessment evaluates the impact of a change from three perspectives:
- Consequences of making the change
- Mandatory resource modifications
- Effort and tasks to complete the change
The main purpose of a change impact assessment is to minimize the negative impacts of change. It accomplishes this by allowing the project team to anticipate issues, such as resource constraints, before they occur.
There are two major benefits of using a change impact assessment:
Minimizing Ripple Effects
A change impact assessment is especially beneficial for projects where quality and safety are paramount. In these projects, a small change can cause huge issues down the line.
We recommend continuously monitoring the impacts of change during the project. This will help you address issues while they’re still small.
Controlling Project Scope
On a complex project that has hundreds or thousands of intertwined processes, a change impact assessment can prevent the project scope from expanding.
How does scope expansion occur? Imagine if a developer on your team promises a change to an end-user, fails to perform a change impact assessment and ends up spending months on a single change order.