The PMP process “direct and manage project work” has four main inputs and one of them is to approved change requests. The same process group has five outputs and one of these is called change requests.
Although the change requests are an output of several processes, they have a central importance within the direct and manage project work process.
Approved change requests come about because of the approved change requests output of the “perform integrated change control” process. Change requests are approved or denied you during this process and once the decision has been made, approve changes come back through this process “direct and manage project work”.
It is here, that the project team will implement the approved changes.
Approved changes might either expand or reduce project scope and may also cause revisions to project budgets, schedules, procedures, the project management plan, and so on,
Change requests can be internal or external to the project or organization. As an example, you may need to make changes because of a new rule that affects your project.
Because of working through activities and producing your product, service, or result, you will inevitably come up on things that need to be changed.
Changes can also come about from the stakeholder requests, external sources, technological advances, and so on. These change requests might encompass schedule, scope, requirement, or resource changes.
Your responsibility as a project manager, is to collect the change requests and make determinations about the impact on the project.
According to the PMBOK Guide, a change request is a formal request to bring about a change that will require revising the documents, a project baseline, a deliverable, or some combination of all three.
Implementation of change requests may incorporate two types of actions. They may also require defect repairs or updates. I shall now describe these.
In many organizations, a corrective action means an employee is in trouble, but this is not what is meant here within the PMBOK Guide.
Corrective actions are taken to get the anticipated future project outcomes to aligned back with the project management plan.
Some corrective actions may be started by the specialist team without the project manager’s input. In this case the project manager will take corrective action to undo such work and take it back to the originally agreed scope.
Another example could be that your vendor is not able to deliver the Laboratories Equipment needed for the next project phase. The project manager will want to exercise their contract options forcing the vendor to provide rental equipment until light and deliver your order.
A preventive action involves anything that will reduce the potential negative impacts of risk events should they occur. Contingency plans and risk responses are examples of preventive actions.
The project manager should be aware of such contingency plans and risk response is so that they are able to implement them at the first sign of trouble.
A defect occurs when a project component does not meet the requirements or specifications. Defects might be discovered when conducting quality audits in the “perform quality assurance” process or when performing inspections during the “control quality” process.
For the PMP exam, you should understand the difference between a validated defect repair and a defect repair. Let me explain.
This is the result of a reinspection of the original defect repair. In other words, you found a problem with the product during the quality processes, you corrected the problem (defect repair), and now you are reinspecting that repair (validated defect repair), to make certain the fix is accurate and correct and fixed the problem.
Changes may require updates to the project documents so that the new information is captured and recorded. An example could be that some of the documents that might require an update could include the scope statement, budget documents, the schedule, risk management plan or risk response plans.
These are an output of several process is, including the “direct and manage project work” process and the “control communications” process in the “monitoring and controlling” process group.
Remember that the executing process group outputs and the monitoring and controlling process group outputs, feed each other as inputs. In such a case, approved change requests are an input, and change requests are an output of the same process.
Direct and manage project work is where the work of the project is performed and the project management plan is put into action and carried out.
In this process, the project manager is like an orchestra conductor signaling the instruments to begin their activities, and monitoring what should be winding down.