Problem:Change Request Solution Needed-Long

Subject: Problem:Change Request Solution Needed-Long
From: Stacey Roberts <stacey -at- AIMETERING -dot- COM>
Date: Tue, 10 Dec 1996 16:59:13 -0600

Dear Colleagues:

Our company is changing the way we sell and support our software.
Instead of offering the software to our clients with training &
documentation so that they run their own systems, we are offering to
manage their systems for a fee. IOW, the customer will never see the
software.

I have been asked to create a change request management system (write
the procedures, create the forms, etc.) to handle changes the customer
will ask us to make to their systems, but I'm not sure of all the
possible solutions.

I'm also unsure as to how the customer will keep track of their own
information such as what is in the database (example: I can see where
a client would call and say, "I want to send in a change request to
add a new billing cycle, but I don't know what's already in the
system." This obviously defeats the purpose of a change management
system if the client has to call every time they want to make a
change.)

Here are some of my thoughts so far:

* paper-based change request forms. This solution is preferred by
management because our customers are not very computer savvy. I
believe this solution is a) ugly and antiquated, and b) complicated
due to the number of changes possible per system parameter.

* DOS-based program. A simple application that would walk someone
through the changes they can make and allow these change requests to
write to a file that the customer could a) print & fax to us for
changes, b) email the files, or c) mail a diskette

* A hyper-text program with nice windows for entering changes. A real
doosey to sell to management because they believe our clients are a)
not sophisticated enough to handle it and b) are computing on every
imaginable type of platform available making this solution
impossible.

Has anyone ever developed and/or documented for this type of change
management system where the customer never sees the software? If so,
what did you do? Any other thoughts or advise is appreciated.

Please respond to me privately so as not to clutter the list. I'll
post a summary of responses next week. TIA
= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =
Stacey Roberts
e-mail: stacey -at- aimetering -dot- com


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