This documentation supports the 23.3 version of BMC Helix Change Management.

To view an earlier version, select the version from the Product version menu.

Scheduling changes by using the Calendar

Important

Some of the features and enhancements in this topic are under controlled availability to select customers.

The Calendar is a helpful tool to monitor incidents, problems, changes, releases, business events, tasks and outages. It is intended to be used by enterprise CIOs and members of the Change Advisory Board (CAB), usually during a CAB meeting, to view incidents, problems, changes, releases, tasks, planned and unplanned CI outages, and business events occurring in the organization for a given duration. The calendar displays the details of the events similar to the way a project management application shows activities and tasks, except that the Calendar is more dynamic and interactive. 

The following topics give you more information about the Calendar:

If you have set the value of CCS parameter enableISCalendar to false in Centralized configuration, see Instructions for classic interfaces. For more information about enabling the BMC Helix Innovation Studio based Calendar in BMC Helix ITSM, see Enabling and configuring the calendar


Calendar overview

The calendar displays the following information in a timeline view for a selected duration:

  • Problems and incidents.
  • Changes, releases and tasks.
  • Business events.
  • Planned and unplanned outages (CI unavailability):
    • A planned outage is the planned, scheduled downtime of a CI. Typically, a planned outage occurs during a scheduled change.
    • An unplanned outage occurs when the CI experiences a sudden, unpredictable service downtime. Typically, an unplanned outage is caused by an incident.

The calendar provides Gantt style representation in a timeline view. You can have a quick visual overview of the timeline and also view the details of the tickets, outages, and events to plan and reschedule if required. Your administrator can customize the views in BMC Helix Innovation Studio to show the required details for each ticket type. For more information, see Enabling and configuring the calendar. You can export the tickets displayed on the calendar to a CSV file or an ICS file for further analysis offline.

With the help of links to dynamic service models, the calendar helps you better understand the risk and impact of changes and releases. The collision detection feature in the calendar detects the collisions between change requests. The calendar also helps you consider potential conflicts by displaying both events and outages for the selected duration. This helps you to better plan the CI outages and schedule changes. Because of better planning, you can make more productive decisions about the forward schedule of changes (FSC). 

Watch the following video(2:52) to understand the overview of the calendar.

How to use an ITSM calendar in BMC Helix ITSM


Example of using Calendar

Allen is implementing a new payroll system in the organization. The installation of the new payroll server will affect the availability of other servers in the organization. The calendar can help Allen decide the most convenient time to start this implementation with minimum impact to the people of the organization.

When Allen views the calendar, he can see the complete details of the events for the selected duration.

By looking at the timeline view for a month, Allen can quickly decide that scheduling a major server installation on a particular day that has multiple events, would overload already strained resources. Any day that has fewer events would be more promising. The calendar displays not only scheduled change or release requests, but also planned outages or business events, giving Allen better visibility of the load for the selected duration.

If required, Allen can switch to the week to look more closely at the week's schedule or select a Day view to get a more granular view of the data. He can use the arrows to move to an earlier or later time period of the selected duration.

After Allen finds a time when no time segments are blocked, he can decide to schedule the payroll server installation. The server installation schedule can overlap other software application installations based on the organization's configuration policy.

When Allen schedules the installation, if the server installation impacts a CI that might be unavailable or required by another request during that time, the calendar provides an indication of colliding records. He can also view the Service Context summary for a Service CI related to the change or release request.

Allen wants to know the overall risk factors associated with the change request. He views the Cognitive risk assessment panel that displays ML-based operational metrics, such as service health, current open situations, situations closed in the past, and the key parameters that may get impacted after the change is implemented. He then views the Risk information service history panel that displays the history of service management efforts taken for a similar change request. Based on his risk assessment he can determine if the change can be approved.

Additionally, Allen can select a request from the calendar and view essential details like the ID, status, and so on, or open the change request by clicking View ticket from the pop-up view of the ticket. If the CI is part of a service model in BMC Helix CMDB or BMC Helix Discovery, Allen can use the links available in the pop-up view to view these service models. He can better understand the impact of the CI on other CIs by viewing these dynamic service models. He can also directly mail to the coordinators of other changes in the organization to discuss about the potential collisions and plan to schedule the changes or outages efficiently by combining similar tasks.


Instructions for classic interfaces

The calendar in classic Smart IT provides an overview of the change and release tickets, business events, and outages. You can access the calendar from the menu bar. The change and release tickets that have Scheduled Start Date and Scheduled End Date, are displayed in the calendar.

The calendar can help you better understand the risk and impact of changes and releases. The calendar also helps you consider potential conflicts by displaying both events and outages for the selected duration.

As an administrator, you can modify the default view of the Calendar by changing the value of calendarDefaultView in the Centralized configuration. For more information, see Enabling and configuring the calendar.

Calendar overview

The Calendar in Mid Tier displays the following information in a calendar-like schedule for a selected duration:

  • Problems and incidents with their reported dates and target dates.
  • Changes and releases with their scheduled start and end dates.
  • Business events and activities.
  • Planned and unplanned outages (CI unavailability):
    • A planned outage is the planned, scheduled downtime of a CI. Typically, a planned outage occurs during a scheduled change.
    • An unplanned outage occurs when the CI experiences a sudden, unpredictable service downtime. Typically, an unplanned outage is caused by an incident.

In Mid Tier, you can drag changes and releases to or edit them within the Calendar.

Filters enable you to select the primary data sources (incidents, problems, changes, and releases) and secondary data sources (such as business events and outages) in the Calendar view. Other secondary data sources, such as tasks or manifests related to the corresponding primary data sources, can be viewed in the Timeline view of the Calendar.

With the help of links to investigative and analysis tools, the Calendar can help you better understand the risk and impact of changes and releases. Because of better planning, you can make more productive decisions about the forward schedule of changes (FSC). The Calendar also helps you consider potential conflicts by displaying both events and outages for the selected duration.

Investigative links are provided that help determine whether multiple incidents were created as the result of an outage, enabling you to determine whether the incidents could have been prevented. For example, if multiple incidents were submitted because an email server went offline because of a patch installation, the administrator can create a problem and also broadcast the outage. The Calendar can thus help you consider interdependencies.

Best practice

  • Performance issues occur when you use the Calendar in Microsoft Internet Explorer version 8. We recommend that you use the latest version of Mozilla Firefox or Internet Explorer for viewing the Calendar.
  • We recommend that you keep the default view as Calendar and the duration as Month.
You can configure the maximum number of records that are displayed in the Calendar. For more information, see Limiting the number of records that appear in the Calendar. If the number of records exceeds the limit that you set, the Calendar does not display all the records. For example, if the limit is set to display 100 records, only the first 100 records are displayed. By default, the records that are displayed are sorted by the start date and the start time of the activity.

Example of using Change Calendar

Allen is implementing a new payroll system in the organization. The installation of the new payroll server will affect the availability of other servers in the organization. The Calendar can help Allen decide the most convenient time to start this implementation with minimum impact to the people of the organization.

When Allen views the Calendar, he can see the complete details of the events for the duration in the view configured by the application administrator.

Important

You can configure your viewing preferences from the Settings menu. For more information on configuring display settings, see Enabling and configuring the calendar.

By looking at the Calendar view for a month, Allen can quickly decide that scheduling a major server installation on a particular day that has multiple events, would overload already strained resources. Any day that has fewer events would be more promising. The Calendar displays not only scheduled change or release requests, but also planned outages or business events, giving Allen better visibility of the load for the selected duration.

If required, Allen can switch to the week to look more closely at the week's schedule or select a Day view to get a more granular view of the data. He can use the arrows next to the timeline bar to move to an earlier or later time period of the selected duration.

After Allen finds a time when no time segments are blocked, he can decide to schedule the payroll server installation. The server installation schedule can overlap other software application installations based on the organization's configuration policy.

When Allen schedules the installation, if the server installation impacts a CI that might be unavailable or required by another request during that time, the Calendar provides an indication of colliding records. He can also view the Service Context summary for a Service CI related to the change or release request.

Additionally, Allen can select a request from the Calendar and view essential details like the ID, status, and so on, or open the change request by using the Open option from the right-click menu on the Calendar. He can click the Details flyout pane to view additional details including Collisions and Impact.

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