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What is Change Management Training?

Article Details
  • Written By: T. Briseno
  • Edited By: J.T. Gale
  • Last Modified Date: 18 May 2018
  • Copyright Protected:
    2003-2018
    Conjecture Corporation
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Change management training involves a combination of technical skills and business principles. Acting as a change manager usually involves company-specific methods of capturing changes to products and documentation throughout their life cycle. For that reason, change management training is generally on-the-job training added to a management knowledge base and existing skill set.

When proposing, designing, manufacturing, and delivering a product for a customer, the product rarely is perfectly realized or brought to completion without error or improvement along the way. As a customer contracts to purchase a service or item, however, it is expected that the promised function and purpose will meet expectations. In order to fulfill a contract, it is often necessary to do so with adjustments over time.

A change manager is generally responsible for tracking and capturing changes to a product or service throughout its development and use. This responsibility is not often achieved within a single system, and change management training is typically customized within the workflow systems of a company. As a product reaches each stage of its development, its functionality, technical specifications, and related documentation are captured and time-stamped as a record. Each subsequent change in development or after the proposed completion must also be captured, and change management training involves an understanding of how to do this across disciplines that can range from contracts to shipping to user manuals.

Version control can be a vital part of a change manager’s role. For example, a piece of equipment on a machine may be run by a central computer. When that computer is upgraded to improve its performance or to correct a design flaw, the associated software for that machine usually needs to be updated as well. When the software and central computer are updated, all documents supporting the control and maintenance of the machine will be updated for users. If the machine is being improved from version A to version B, and there are documents and contracts tied to the machine and its use, then the change manager will likely have the task of routing, retrieving, and archiving the software and documentation changes from A to B.

During the process of tracking changes through a system, a change manager must also be skilled in communicating across departments to achieve the needed capture and approval of all supporting materials within a framework and set of deadlines. Having the ability to communicate effectively with many personalities and sometimes conflicting departmental priorities can require tact and diplomacy. Technical skills and user-interface instruction can be acquired through specific change management training, while the diplomacy that may be needed can come with experience and with the disposition of the change manager.

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