Part 3: Project Change and Control

Change control is a mechanism that PMs use to control any change proposals that may affect a project. A good project begins with proper planning. This process ensures that all the eventualities in a project are considered. However, this is not always the case. In some instances, various conditions necessitate change. It is, therefore, inevitable that a project will experience the demand for change during its lifecycle. Essentially, change and control mean aligning the project with emerging conditions. Some changes arise from within the team, while clients or stakeholders propose others. Whatever the origin, all changes must be analyzed before being accepted or rejected. In project management, change is inevitable, and therefore there must be a mechanism to manage that process.  The primary purpose of change control is to ensure that change is not effected where it is not necessary (Andrade, Albuquerque, & Teófilo’s , 2016). If that happens, then the entire project may be at risk for no apparent reason, leading to waste of resources and valuable time. All changes in the project plan must be properly documented.

Each project has a unique change control procedure. An amendment request always triggers the process of change control (Harvard University, 2021). A change proposal can either originate from stakeholders or the team members. Wherever it is from, change control will be there to ascertains the value and feasibility of the proposed amendment. Change control happens in five stages, including:

1.  Proposing change. An individual, either a stakeholder or the project team, identifies the need for change and relays the project management information via a specified channel. This proposal describes the change and how beneficial it will be to the project. The request and the reasons for the change are then documented for further analysis.

2.  Impact summary.Here, the PM examines the impact of the project’s change and how it will affect certain variables. One of the significant things to consider is the cost implication. Whether the proposed change requires or saves money. Legal constraints should also be assessed. PMs should also consider how the change will affect the project schedule. They should evaluate whether they will require more resources to effect the change and if the proposal will affect their business model. Once the PM has done due diligence, he/she can go ahead and approve or deny the changes.

3.  Decision making.Here, the change proposal is accepted, deferred, or denied. The PM is not always the final decision-making authority; however, they provide crucial recommendations. No matter the decision, further guidance will be made and deliberated on later.

4.  Implementing the change.Once the relevant authority has approved the change, the decision proceeds to the planning phase. A plan of action is developed. It states the beginning and the end of the implementation of the change. A review is then done to examine the shortfalls and successes of the plan. However, if the change is rejected, status quo is maintained.

5.  Closure. In this phase, the person who proposed the change can assess the change and give their opinion. If they agree to the improvement, appropriate paperwork is completed and filed for future reference.


Figure 2

The process of project change management

Image address:


The Importance of Change Control

A project will undoubtedly require either small or significant change. PMs must have a way of managing changes to ensure that it does not affect the project negatively. Effective management of change is crucial to the success of a project. It maintains the project on schedule and keeps it within budget. Change control enhances teamwork. When change is proposed, the team works together to handle the request appropriately. Collaboration improves productivity in the entire project. Once the team learns to work together in change control, their problem-solving skills improve significantly. Change control provides relevant information for the planning of the project. PMs learn how to respond to change and establish safeguards when planning for the future.

Emmanuel Addo

Emmanuel Addo is the founder of the Young Global Leaders Network, an international non-governmental organization registered in six (6) countries namely, Ghana, United Kingdom, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Democratic Republic of Congo, and South Sudan and has a membership strength of over 15,000 young black professionals, students, graduates, and aspiring leaders.

The organization also operates in 25 other African countries. Emmanuel also doubles as the chief convener and founder of the Young African Leaders Summit, one of the largest continental youth summits in Africa.  

Currently works at Kingston University as a Business Engagement Team Member in their Partnerships and Engagement Department. 

He characterizes energy, integrity, result-oriented, and ground-breaking service in each detail of strategic management, change management, stakeholder management, and leadership acquaintances.
Emmanuel owns a core background in Sociology and Psychology from the University of Ghana.

Leveraging his experience as a youth activist and a dynamic young man, Emmanuel founded the Young Global Leaders Network, a youth organization that comprises young diplomats, young politicians, and aspiring politicians, business/entrepreneurial business leaders with the aim of championing a mutual agenda for the African youth and promoting youth participation in governance as well as promoting entrepreneurial culture.
Emmanuel nurtures an environment of teamwork and has expertise in data collection and analysis as well as both quantitative and qualitative methods.

Emmanuel worked as an Associate Lecturer at the London College of Advanced Management where he delivered a wide range of business management courses that involved principles of marketing, leadership, operation management, and research methods. Emmanuel has always maintained high teaching and learning standards to ensure that his students’ stand out in academic achievements and successful progression. As a stout believer and passionate key player in volunteering; Emmanuel creates quality time to giving back gladly to his community what he has learned and to educate individuals with free consultancy on career development. He is a leader anyone would love to look up to and with great integrity, commitment, and passion to make the world a better place.
Emmanuel worked as Qualifications Manager at the Open University in the UK.

Emmanuel is also the founder of Kickstart Innovation Hub Ltd, the entrepreneurial hub of Young Global Leaders Network.