This documentation supports the 21.05 version of BMC Helix ITSM: Change Management. To view an earlier version, select the version from the product version menu.

Stages of a change request

A Standard or Normal change control process flow has certain status values and transitions and these are incorporated in the status of the change request as it follows the process through its lifecycle. 

Related topic

Reviewing and changing the status of incident requests Open link

The change request status has the following values and transitions:

Status value

Description

Draft

This initial state indicates a change request that is still being filled in or worked on. The change records in this state are not considered to be active.

We recommend that you set the state of the change request to Draft when you create the change request from scratch (and not from another request type).

Request For Authorization

This state indicates a change request that is pending a change reviewer approval and is the first state that indicates an active change request.

Request For Change

This state indicates a change request that is pending a Business Approval.

Planning In Progress

This state indicates a change request that is in the final update status.

Scheduled For Review

This state indicates a change request that is being reviewed by the Change Manager Group, if it is not skipped within the change rules.

Scheduled For Approval

This state indicates a change request that is pending the implementation approval.

Scheduled

This state indicates a change request that has been approved for implementation, but the implementation has not started.

Implementation In Progress

This state indicates a change request where the implementation is underway.

Pending

This state indicates a change request that is pending for a specific reason, as stated in the Status Reason field.

Rejected

This state indicates a change request that has been rejected from an approval process.

Completed

This state indicates a change request where the implementation is done, but the final review of the request is still required.

Closed

This terminal state indicates that the change request was completed and that the request has gone through a final review.

Cancelled

This state indicates a change request that has been cancelled.

At any given time, only a subset of these states is displayed on the Change UI to make it easier for you to determine the next possible state transitions. You can also click the buttons (Next State and Previous State for Smart IT and Next Stage and Previous Stage for BMC Helix ITSM) to change the state transitions and to move the change request forward or back in the process respectively. 

Along with the Status field, there is a corresponding Status Reason field. Using the menu that is attached to the Status Reason field, you can select a predetermined status reason to explain why the record is in a certain state. For example, if the change request is in a Pending state, you can select the reason for this by using the Status Reason field.

Change Initiation and Recording

When you submit a change request in Smart IT, the status is set to Draft. From BMC Helix ITSM, you can set the state of a change request to Draft, Request For Authorization, Pending, or Cancelled.

The following diagram explains the state transitions described above:



The Draft state indicates that a request that is still being filled in or worked on to get the needed requirements documented before the request moves ahead to approval or planning. You can keep a change request in a Draft state for any length of time as required. In this state, no notification events or approval requests are sent. From this stage, the possible state transitions are:

  • Draft to Request For Authorization—This state is the most common status transition for a change request, because this indicates a change that is ready to become an active request. This state transition will move the change request to the Authorization for Business Assessment stage.
  • Draft to Pending—This state transition signifies that you cannot complete the change request at this time for a reason selected in the Status Reason field.
  • Draft to Cancelled—This state transition signifies that you do not want to proceed with this change request. 

Approval: Authorization for Business Assessment

After the change request is moved out of the Draft state and in to the Request For Authorization state, one of the following four state transitions occur automatically, assuming there are change reviewer approvals. 

Important

This state indicates the Change Reviewer Approval phase.

  • Request For Authorization to Rejected—The application automatically performs this state transition, if one or more approvers reject the change request.
  • Rejected to Cancelled—This state transition signifies that the change coordinator and the change manager have decided not to proceed with the change request at this time due to the Change Reviewer Approval rejection reason.
  • Rejected to Request For Authorization—This state transition signifies that the change coordinator and the change manager have updated the change request based on the Change Reviewer rejection reason and want to get it re-assessed for approval.
  • Request For Authorization to Request For Change—This state transition signifies that the change request has passed the Change Reviewer approval phase and is ready for the Business Approval phase.

If there are no change reviewer approvals configured or no change reviewer approvers selected, the system automatically moves the change request to the Request For Change state to begin the Business Approval phase. The possible state transitions are:

  • Request For Change to Rejected—The application automatically performs this state transition if one or more approvers reject the change request.
  • Rejected to Cancelled—This state transition signifies that the change coordinator and the change manager have decided not to proceed with the change request at this time due to the Business Approval rejection reason.
  • Rejected to Request For Change—This state transition signifies that the change coordinator and the change manager have updated the change request based on the Business Approval rejection reason and want to get it re-assessed for approval.
  • Request For Change to Planning In Progress—This state transition signifies that the change request has passed the business approval and is ready for planning.

If there are no business approvals configured or no business approvers selected, the system automatically moves the change request to the Planning In Progress state to begin the Change Assessment, Planning and Scheduling phase.

The following diagram explains the status values for a change request at certain points in the flow as well as the state transitions described above for the Change Reviewer Approval and Business Approval phase:

Change Assessment, Planning, and Scheduling

After the change request has been approved for business approvals or there were no business approvals, the change request automatically moves to the Planning In Progress state.

Important

The notifications are not triggered when the change request is set to the Planning In Progress state.

From here, the possible state transitions are:

  • Planning In Progress to Request For Change (RFC)—This state transition moves the change request back to the RFC state and restarts the business approval process. This action is typically done if something was missed, or if something has changed with the original scope of the change request.
  • Planning In Progress to Scheduled For Review—This state transition signifies that all of the planning and scheduling tasks have been completed and that the change request is now ready for review by the change manager and CAB.
  • Planning In Progress to Pending—This state transition signifies that you cannot continue with the Planning and Scheduling stage at this time for a reason selected in the Status Reason field.
  • Planning In Progress to Cancelled—This state transition signifies that you do not want to proceed with this change request.

The following diagram explains the status values for a change request at certain points in the flow as well as the state transitions described above:

Change Plan and Schedule Review

After the planning and scheduling for the change request are complete, the change request is moved to the Scheduled For Review state. From here, the possible state transition options are:

  • Scheduled For Review to Scheduled For Approval—This state transition signifies that all of the planning and scheduling tasks have been reviewed and that the change request is now ready for Implementation approval.
  • Scheduled For Review to Pending—This state transition signifies that you cannot continue with the review at this time for a reason selected in the Status Reason field.
  • Scheduled For Review to Cancelled—This state transition signifies that you do not want to proceed with this request.
  • Scheduled For Review to Request For Change—This state transition moves the change request back to the RFC state and restarts the business approval process. This action is typically done, if something was missed or something has changed with the original scope of the change request. 

Important

You can skip this status, by selecting the By-pass Schedule for Review option within the change rules.

The following diagram explains the status values for a change request at certain points in the flow as well as the state transitions described above:

Approval: Authorization for Implementation

After the change request is moved out of the Scheduled For Review state and into the Scheduled For Approval state, one of the following state transitions occur automatically:

  • The change request stays in the Scheduled For Approval state if the implementation approvals have been configured and if the approvers are selected to approve the change request.
  • The change request is moved into the Scheduled state if there are no implementation approvals either configured or found for the change request.

Assuming that there are implementation approvals, the possible state transitions are:

  • Scheduled For Approval to Rejected—The application automatically performs this state transition when one or more approvers reject the change request.
  • Rejected to Cancelled—This state transition signifies that the change coordinator and the change manager have decided not to proceed with the change request at this time due to the Implementation Approval rejection reason.
  • Rejected to Scheduled For Review—This state transition signifies that the change coordinator and the change manager have updated the change request based on the Implementation Approval rejection reason and want to get it re-evaluated for implementation approval. This option is available from the Restart option in Mid Tier and Smart IT.
  • Scheduled For Approval to Scheduled—This state transition signifies that the change request has passed the implementation approval and is ready for the implementation.

The following diagram explains the status values for a change request at certain points in the flow as well as the state transitions described above:

Change Implementation

After the change request is moved into the Scheduled state, the Change Coordinator can perform one of the following state transitions:

  • Scheduled to Implementation In Progress—This state transition means that the change coordinator can begin implementing the change based on the approved tasks, date, time, and plan.
  • Scheduled to Cancelled—This state transition means that the change coordinator and the change manager have decided to cancel the change request, usually due to business priority changes or new conflicts.
  • Scheduled to either Request For Change or Planning In Progress—This state transition means that the plans or schedule of the change request have changed, so the request might need to go through approvals again.
  • Scheduled to Pending—This state transition means that the change coordinator and the change manager have moved the change request to the pending state.

Assuming that the change request is being implemented, the possible state transitions are:

  • Implementation In Progress to Completed—This state transition means that the change implementer has completed the implementation tasks for the change request. The value of the Status Reason is automatically set to Final Review Required, signifying that the request is now ready for the Close Down Approval stage.
  • Implementation In Progress to Request For Change—This state transition means that the change request plans have changed during implementation, so the request might need to go through business approvals and planning again.
  • Implementation In Progress to Planning In Progress—This state transition means that the change request plans have changed during implementation, so the request might need to go through planning again.

    Important

    If any of the tasks related to the change request are in implementation stage or if the current task phase is in implementation stage, and the change manager or the change coordinator tries to move the change request from Implementation In Progress to any of the previous stages, the following error is displayed:
    This Change Request has at least one open task or task group. Cannot perform back operation at this stage.

  • Implementation In Progress to Pending—This state transition signifies that you cannot continue with the implementation at this time for a reason selected in the Status Reason field.
  • Implementation In Progress to Cancelled—This state transition signifies that the change coordinator and the change manager do not want to proceed with this request.

The following diagram explains the status values for a change request at certain points in the flow as well as the state transitions described above:

Approval: Authorization for Close Down

After the change request is moved into the Completed state with a value of the Status Reason field as Final Review Required, one of the following state transitions occur automatically:

  • The change request stays in the Completed state with the value of the Status Reason field as Final Review Required if the close down approvals have been configured and if the approvers are selected to approve the change request.
  • The change request is moved to the Completed state with the value of the Status Reason field as Final Review Complete if there are no close down approvals either configured or found for the change request.

Assuming that there are close down approvals, the possible state transitions are:

  • Completed, Final Review Required to Rejected—The application automatically performs this state transition when one or more approvers reject the change request.
  • Rejected to Restart Change (existing change status is set to Request For Authorization)—This state transition signifies that the change coordinator and the manager have decided to restart the change request to address the implementation issues based on the close down approval rejection reason.
  • Rejected to Cancelled—This state transition signifies that the change coordinator and the change manager have decided not to complete the change request at this time, due to the close down approval rejection reason. This action is typically done for unsuccessful changes that do not need to be backed out.

  • Rejected to Create New Change request (existing change status is set to Cancelled)—This state transition signifies that the change coordinator and the change manager have decided that a new change request is required to address implementation issues based on the close down approval rejection reason. The existing change request will be set to Cancelled.
  • Completed, Final Review Required to Completed, Final Review Complete—This state transition signifies that the change request has passed the Close Down Approval stage and is ready to be closed. This action is typically done for successful, partly successful, or backed out changes.

The following diagram explains the status values for a change request at certain points in the flow as well as the state transitions described above:

Change Completion and Close Down

After the change request is moved to the Completed state, with the value of the Status Reason field as Final Review Complete, the change coordinator can perform one of the following state transitions with the appropriate status reason:

  • Completed to Closed, Backed Out
  • Completed to Closed, Successful
  • Completed to Closed, Successful with Issues
  • Completed to Closed, Unsuccessful

In addition, the change request can be moved back into on the following states:

  • Draft
  • Request For Change
  • Planning In Progress
  • Pending

Best practice

In case of any issues, close the change request and open a new change request.

The following diagram explains the status values for a change request at certain points in the flow as well as the state transitions described above:


Change request status reasons

Users can identify a requirement for additional status reasons. 

The following table displays only the applicable status reasons. For additional status values, see Additional status values for change requests.

Change request status

Status reasons and description

Planning In Progress

  • Accepted—The change request is in a planning in progress status because the request is accepted.
  • Assigned—The change request is in a planning in progress status because the request is assigned.
  • Built—The change request is in a planning in progress status because the request analysis is done and all the tasks are added to the request.

Implementation in Progress

  • In Rollout—The change request is in an implementation in progress status because the request is rolled out and released to the user.
  • In Development—The change request is in an implementation in progress status because the request is in development.
  • In Test—The change request is in an implementation in progress status because the request is in the testing phase.
  • In Build—The change request is in an implementation in progress status because the request is in a in build status.
  • In Rollback—The change request is in an implementation in progress status because the request is in a rollback state.
  • In Documentation—The change request is in an implementation in progress status because the request is getting documented.
  • In Verification—The change request is in an implementation in progress status because the request is in a verification state.

Pending

  • On Hold—The change request is pending because the request is on hold.
  • Future Enhancement—The change request is pending because the request needs future enhancement.
  • Manager Intervention—The change request is pending because the request needs manager intervention.
  • Miscellaneous—The change request is pending because of any other reason than the statuses mentioned here.
  • Support Group Communication—The change request is pending because of a pending support group communication.
  • Task Review—The change request is pending because of a task review.
  • Vendor Purchase— The change request is pending because of vendor purchase.

Rejected

  • Insufficient Task Data—The change request is rejected because of insufficient data related to the task.
  • Insufficient Change Data—The change request is rejected because of insufficient data related to the request.
  • Schedule Conflicts—The change request is rejected because of schedule related conflicts.

Completed

  • Final Review Required—The change request is completed because a final review of the request is required.
  • Final Review Complete—The change request is completed because a final review of the request is complete.
  • Additional Coding Required—The change request is completed because additional coding is required.

Closed

  • Successful—The change request is closed because the request is successful.
  • Successful with Issues—The change request is closed because the request is successful, but with issues.
  • Unsuccessful—The change request is closed because the request is unsuccessful.
  • Backed Out—The change request is closed because the request is backed out.
  • Automatically Cancelled—The change request is closed because the request is automatically cancelled.

Cancelled

  • No Longer Required—The change request is cancelled because the request is no longer required,
  • Resources Not Available—The change request is cancelled because resources are not available.
  • To Be Re-Scheduled—The change request is cancelled because the request needs to be rescheduled.
  • Funding Not Available—The change request is cancelled because funding is not available.

Additional status values for change requests

The following table describes the additional status values for change requests, for example, if an approval has been rejected.

Change request status

Description

Pending

Work on the request has been suspended temporarily. The Status Reason field is required to describe the reason for interruption.

Relate CI

In the Plan & Schedule stage, you can search for configuration items and relate them to the change requests. For more information, see Relating and managing configuration items and impacted services for a change request.

Rejected

The request has been rejected by an approver at any Approval Phase.

Cancelled

The request is no longer required or the current change plans must be modified.


Change request status transitions

Some status transitions in the change request life-cycle can be performed only by users who have been assigned a specific role. For example, while all users can move a change request into Request For Authorization status, only a change manager or a change coordinator can cancel a change request.

Important

You cannot cancel a change request that is in Pending status.

The following table describes the successive stages and approval phases of a change request and identifies legal status transitions for each of these stages:

Stage

Approval phase

Status

Description

Tasks

Initiate

Not applicable

Draft

Verifies that all the fields required to generate the change request are entered in the Change form. Use the Draft status to record a change request without submitting it to the change management process.

For information, see Create change requests in the Initiation and Recording stage.

  • Next stage
  • Enter pending (or resume)
  • Cancel

Initiate

Review

Request for Authorization

Change is in the Review approval phase. If it is approved, only then does it move forward to the Review & Authorize stage.

For information, see Approval processes provided out-of-the-box for Change Management.

  • Approve
  • Reject
  • Cancel

Review & Authorize

Business Approval

Request for Change

Change is in the Business Approval phase. Enables approvers to review the request and authorize it.

For information, see Approval processes provided out-of-the-box for Change Management.

  • Approve
  • Reject
  • Cancel

Plan & Schedule

Not applicable

Planning In Progress

Tasks can be built at any change status except Completed.

For information, see Defining and managing relationships.

  • Next stage
  • Enter pending (or resume)
  • Relate CI
  • Cancel

Plan & Schedule

Not applicable

Scheduled for Review

The change manager reviews and validates the change plans.

For information, see Defining and managing relationships.

  • Next stage
  • Enter pending (or resume)
  • Cancel

Plan & Schedule

Implementation

Scheduled for Approval

Change is in the Implementation Approval phase. Each level of approvers must review the request and approve it.

For information, see Approval processes provided out-of-the-box for Change Management.

  • Approve
  • Reject
  • Cancel

Plan & Schedule

Not applicable

Scheduled

The request is included in the Forward Schedule of Changes (FSC) Calendar.

  • Next stage
  • Enter pending (or resume)
  • Relate CI
  • Cancel

Implement

Not applicable

Implementation in Progress

At least one task related to the request is in progress.

For information, see Defining and managing relationships.

  • Next stage
  • Enter pending (or resume)
  • Cancel

Implement

Close Down Approval

Completed

Change is in the Close Down Approval phase. The request is completed, but needs approval to reach the Closed stage.

For information, see Approval processes provided out-of-the-box for Change Management.

  • Approve
  • Reject
  • Cancel

Implement

Close Down Approval

Completed

Change is in the Close Down Approval phase. The request is completed, but requires final review approval to reach the Closed stage.

For information, see Approval processes provided out-of-the-box for Change Management.

  • Approve
  • Reject

Implement

Not applicable

Completed

Reviewers verify change was implemented and all required tasks have been completed. KPIs analyzed.

  • Next stage
  • Enter pending (or resume)
  • Previous stage - Planning in Progress or Pending
  • Cancel

Closed

Not applicable

Closed

If the status reason is Successful, Post Implementation Review has been completed and any necessary Close Down Approvals have been granted, no further activities are performed on the change request.

Other status reasons include:

  • Successful with Issues
  • Unsuccessful
  • Backed Out

None

For a helpful overview of how task statuses compare to change statuses, see The life cycle of tasks as part of a change.

For state transition diagrams that depict the status flow of change requests, see Change control process flows.


Change request state transitions - Draft to Closed

You can use the following change request status transition information to follow the flow of a change request from Draft to Closed status.

  1. A change request starts in the Draft status. Any related task groups or tasks are in Staged status. 



  2. When the request moves through the process flow:
    • If approvers are mapped to the Review approval phase, the request remains in the Request For Authorization status.
    • If no approvers are mapped to the Review approval phase, the request moves to the Request for Change status and requires the change manager or the change coordinator to move it forward.
    • If no approvers are mapped to any of the approval phases and you are using only the standard approvals, the request moves to the Planning In Progress status and requires the change manager or the change coordinator to move it forward.
    • If the Timing of the request is Latent, it moves to the Completed status.
  3. The Review approval phase requires that the request be approved before it can move forward. If the request is approved, it moves to the Request for Change status.
  4. If no approvers are mapped to the Business Approval phase, the request moves to the Planning In Progress status and requires the change manager or the change coordinator to move it forward.
    By default, No Impact changes follow the Business Approval - No Impact phase and move forward to the Scheduled status.
  5. The Business Approval phase requires that the request be approved before it can move forward.
    • If the request is approved, it moves to the Planning In Progress status.
    • If the request is canceled, it moves to the Cancelled status.
  6. When the change moves to the Planning in Progress status, the status reason of all Staged tasks is set to Staging in Progress.

    Important

    This is not applicable when Task Phase Management is enabled. For state transitions of a change with Task Phase Management enabled, see Task Phase Management.

  7. When the change manager or the change coordinator add dates to the request, or when the Status Reason of all the tasks has been marked as Staging Complete, the request moves to the Scheduled for Review status. If the Scheduled for Review status is bypassed in the change rules, the change moves to the next valid change status.
  8. The change manager or the change coordinator can move the request to the Schedule for Approval status, cancel it, or move it back to the Planning In Progress status. 



  9. The request remains in the Scheduled for Approval status if there are approvers in the Implementation Approval phase. If no approvers are mapped to the phase, the request moves to the Scheduled status and requires the change manager or the change coordinator to move it forward.
  10. If the request is approved, it moves to the Scheduled status. The change manager and the change coordinator can approve the request on behalf of approvers, if they are defined as alternates.
  11. The change manager or the change coordinator must move the request to the Implementation in Progress status. 
  12. When the change manager or the change coordinator move the request into the Implementation in Progress status, the task group is set to Work in Progress and the first task is set to Pending or Assigned.
  13. Task implementers can start work on tasks. When all tasks are marked Closed, the change manager or the change coordinator enters information into Actual Start Date, Actual End Date, and Performance Rating fields to move the request to the Completed status.
    If the Status Reason is set to Final Review Complete, the request moves to Completed status. If the Status Reason is set to Final Review Required, the request moves to Close Down Approval phase.
  14. After the last task is marked as Closed, the task group that it belongs to is also set to Closed. 
    When all tasks are completed, the change request automatically moves to the Completed status with a status reason of Final Review Required. This process happens regardless of whether you have configured an approval phase for the Completed status with a status reason of Final Review Required. The status reason is automatically selected, based on the approval process configuration:

    • If you have configured an approval phase for the Completed status, the status reason that you configured for the approval phase is selected. For example, the default status reason in the Close Down Approval phase is Final Review Required.
    • If you have not configured an approval phase for the Completed status, the status reason is set to Final Review Complete, by default. 
  15. The change manager is notified when final review is completed. The request moves to Completed (Final Review Complete) status if all tasks are completed or if there are no approvers for the Close Down Approval phase. The Requested For user (Requester tab) is then notified.
    At this stage, the change manager can change the status of the request back to Planning in Progress or Pending, if required.



  16. After the final review is completed, the change manager or the change coordinator closes the change request.
    However, if you enable the Auto-Close feature, the change request is closed automatically based on the Auto-Close Days rule that you can configure.
    After the change is closed, users with Change Master permissions can update information within the change record. They cannot however update the following fields:

    • Class
    • Status
    • Any date fields
      They also cannot add new tasks or ad hoc approvers.

      Important

      After a change request is closed, it cannot be reopened.

  17. If a change has been rejected:
    • It can be resumed. When the change is resumed, it moves back to the approval status in which it was rejected.
    • It can be moved to Cancelled status. It can then be moved back to the Draft status to start the process over.
  18. If change request is cancelled, the Requested For user is notified.
    • If a change request is cancelled, all the task groups and tasks associated with the request are also cancelled.
    • If a task group is cancelled, all its tasks are cancelled.
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