Change is inevitable in any type of business. Successful organizations are dynamic and are constantly undergoing change, striving for innovative and cost-effective solutions to achieve sustainability in a robust and competitive business environment. Modifications may be required to equipment, operational policies, and organizational structure or personnel. History has illustrated the potential negative consequences associated with changes that are not managed appropriately. Common problems with respect to the implementation of a change include:
• changes that are not technically sound,
• lack of careful consideration of the ramifications,
• poor execution, and
• failure to effectively communicate change information to key personnel.
A Management of Change (MoC) system is a combination of policies and procedures used to evaluate the potential impacts of a proposed change so that it does not result in unacceptable risks. A thorough MoC system manages both temporary and permanent modifications in a ship or offshore unit including equipment, materials, operating procedures and conditions, and personnel. An effective MoC system will not only minimize significant impacts on safety and the environment, but will incorporate strategies in managing the associated business risks on quality, continued commerce and security.
A system requiring MoC for every modification is likely to become onerous and unproductive. This paper provides guidance for selection of the activities and systems to be subject to management of change, the life-cycle applicability, types of changes to be evaluated, and boundaries and overlaps with other administrative programs or elements. It describes key functions and interrelationships for personnel at various levels of a representative organization. In summary, this paper describes the core principles to be considered when developing and implementing an MoC program that will optimize existing safety and risk management efforts.