Item: Change form

A change form identifies a set of part and document records and changes their current release status; proposes a future change; or approves a temporary change to business rules.

You can specify related information such as:

  • Whether a change affects the actual release or cancellation of an item
  • Affected items
  • Reviewing groups and observer lists with configurable workflow
  • Cross-references to related changes

Change results are permanent§

Change forms that have been rejected, released, or completed can't be removed or reversed. A canceled change form can (and should) be removed.

Items listed on a  Released or Completed change can't be returned to their pre-release state. Parts and documents listed on a Rejected, Released, or Completed change cannot be deleted from the change form's Affected list or removed from the system. These actions are allowed only when a change form is at Originated or Submitted states.

Iteration-related data and relationships — such as BOM parts, Source parts, References and Revision Files — cannot be deleted from a released or canceled parent item. Selected item-level data (mostly on the Attributes and Custom pages) can be changed after an item has been released; see the list of attributes described in the Product Families collection's Product Team topic.

Changes don't have revisions§

A change is a unit of information that can't be revised. Any released change that has an error is corrected by issuing another change.

Some change attributes can be modified by the analyst after release but prior to completion. A completed or rejected change cannot be modified, except when the administrator uses the Tools menu: Administrator Override command.

Executing and advisory changes§

Under legacy paper-based PLM systems, change forms were documents that described the change, listed the items that were affected by the change, and provided for authorized people to approve the change. In an automated PLM system, a change form does these same functions. The PLM system also releases or cancels items as directed by the change's contents.

An executing change form releases and/or cancels a list of one or more affected items.

An advisory change form simply announces a particular fact about the affected items. A "fact" may be, for instance, that a product needs upgrading ("change request"), or product shipments must be stopped until a defect is corrected ("stop ship"), or a different part can be used as a temporary substitution ("deviation").

An executing change form acts upon the items shown on its Affected list: pending items are released, and released items are canceled. In contrast, an advisory change form doesn't release or cancel anything.

To release and cancel items, your PLM design must include at least one executing change in its collection of change forms. All other change forms are optional.

Common change forms§

Executing change forms§

The change notice (or change order) is an executing change form that defines a set of items being released and/or canceled. That is, a signed-off CN documents that the items listed on it have been updated and may be used in accordance with the effectivity dates listed. The CN may also show the cost of the change: for example, the expenses related to scrapping or reworking old parts, and retooling and supporting new ones.

An engineering change notice, or ECN, typically affects design documentation and part release. A manufacturing change notice (MCN) may be used to control process documentation and approved vendor parts. Other change notices can manage quality, service, training, or marketing documents.

Advisory change forms§

A change request proposes a future action to a part or document, without changing its current release status. The CR identifies the deficiency in enough detail so that the responsible designer can understand the problem. While a proposed solution is usually required, this solution may not be what is ultimately modified. Change requests do not identify specific iterations, since these could change by the time the CR is transformed into a change notice.

A deviation or waiver specifies a temporary change to an approved physical configuration, usually because a part is unavailable or not correctly manufactured. A deviation proposes to accept parts before they've been produced, while a waiver proposes to accept produced parts that do not conform to the design documentation, but are serviceable (or will be serviceable after approved rework is performed). In most engineering groups, deviations and waivers are treated the same, and are combined into a single advisory change form. Deviations and waivers are typically limited in quantity or time. Deviations and waivers are used for parts; a document needed for a temporary part change is issued its own document number, and released on an executing change.

You'd use a stop ship to temporarily halt shipments of products that may not conform to design requirements. A stop ship will typically provide a fixed time, after which it expires or is replaced with a new stop ship or other change (e.g., deviation or CN). A stop ship is an advisory change form, and is limited to parts.

A problem report identifies a product problem that requires study and possible changes. Since the PR may be initiated by a customer, regulator, or employee who does not know the product in detail, it may not always identify an affected item. Since all iterations of a part are interchangeable, the PR identifies a part number, not a specific iteration. Document problems are reported on a change request.

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