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ITIL :: View topic - definitions - of minor, significant and major
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definitions - of minor, significant and major

 
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Patrickzim
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 01, 2007 5:13 am    Post subject: definitions - of minor, significant and major Reply with quote

Does anyone have any definitions that they use within their organization to further define the classification of minor, significant, or major that they are willing to share? The ITIL definitions are ambiguous and subjective at best.
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UKVIKING
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Joined: Sep 16, 2006
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 01, 2007 6:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The same would apply to every organization

Major, Minor and Significant describe how big the 'whatever' is

It is also subjective

Look at a queue of people waiting to go to the bathroom at a stadium

Major would be 20 people in line
Minor would be 3
Significant would be any more than 10
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jpgilles
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 13, 2007 2:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

My 2 cents contribution: (usable in some cases)

Minor: scope within IT operations
Significant : scope within the IS department
Major: beyond the scope of the sole IS department

examples:
Minor: adding a second network card on a server
Significant: new version of Operating system on a server
Major: new version of the Human Ressources Management Software
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ARoll
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 13, 2007 5:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The total consultant answer: it depends.

My approach in my previous life and that worked well was a combination of the Risk and Impact will determine the classification. This solely depends on your organization has i don't think i've found a standard set of questions that can apply to all situations. Yes there will be similar questions that can be asked of all organizations to get a base rating then the rest just depends on how you as a organization want to weigh in on things. My preferred method is through a small questionaire type with a weight on the questions of either being Risk, Impact or both. From here you can set this into a 3x3 matrix for Example

Risk Minor Signif Major

Impact
Minor Min Sig Sig

Signif Min Sig Maj

Major Sig Maj Maj

So based on the questionaires if, say your cut off's were <30, 30-60, >60 and the score came in 57 Risk and 25 Impact, following the matrix would have a default classification of Signifficant. ***Note the above is just an example of an approach*** This can give you a base classification, which can still be interpreted just from gut feeling. Example initial classification may truely be a minor but from past experience you know its a biggie so you opt to raise the classification and its visibility. Also matrix doesn't show properly with spaces.....

So here's the short answer - Classification = Risk & Impact to the organization.
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Globis
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 25, 2007 10:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I assume this question is related to incident management.

The severity of an incident usually relates to the impact on the service, and determines how the incident is handled, what responses are required, and the escalation path.

The service desk will have several severity levels (usually 3 or 4) predefined. When an incident is reported the service desk, based on incident description and the SLA of the service, will in agreement with the caller assign a severity to the incident.

Normally a Major incident (or Severity 1) is one that affects all users of a service, for example the server an application uses crashes and the service is unavailable to everyone. This might require hourly reporting, with a MTTR (mean time to repair) within 4 hours, and initial escalation to the service manager, or higher (e.g. CIO).

A Significant incident (or Severity 2) might be when a remote site goes offline, and a number of users can no longer access the service. This may require reporting every 2 hours with a MTTR of 4 hours, and initial escalation to the regional service manager.

A minor incident (or Severity 3) might when the service is very busy and is responding slowly. This may require reporting every 8 hours with a MTTR of 16 hours, and initial escalation to second line support.

Many organisations create a 4th severity that covers issues which do not affect the service, but which need capturing. This might be a bug report to fix a minor issue such as a spelling mistake in an application, or questions about the service.

These are of course only examples, you must define something that you feel fits your service organisation.

Remember, what is minor for one service may be major for another. Hence the service desk should be able to classify seperately per service e.g. based on a cheat-sheet, training etc. Inevitably mistakes will occur in classification (or some customers believe any fault is a severity one fault), but these should be fixed by second line support.

Hope this helps,

Dave
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Globis
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2007 5:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hmm, having just noticed that my reply was about incident management when in the 'Change management' forum, I assume the question was about change management.

So, sorry to everyone for wasting their time on an irrelevant discussion on incident management;-)

As for the orginial question:

Simply put what is major,minor, or significant is entirely subjective. It depends on what your drivers are: cost, impact, risk, resources, time to implement. And for different organisations these are very different.

Personally I'm not entirely sure what use such a classification can have as it is so subjective, and anyway can be completely different for each of the aspects of a change request.

A change that is major in scope, may be minor in risk, and significant in cost.

A change that is minor in cost, may have major risk and minor scope.

So unless your workflow actually is different based on the classification, which it shouldn't need to be - why bother?

Dave
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Globis
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2007 6:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Does anyone have any definitions that they use within their organization to further define the classification of minor, significant, or major that they are willing to share? The ITIL definitions are ambiguous and subjective at best.


I went back to my ITIL docs on this one as I re-read my 2nd reply and was still not entirely happy with it.

In Change Assessment and Approval there are 3 categories:

1 - Minor
The CM has delegated authority (from the CAB) to approve/schedule changes. CAB must still be informed i.e. CRs must be raised.

2 - Significant
CR discussed/authorised at CAB level

3 - Major
Too big for the CAB, the CR is referred to CIO or ICT board level.

So yes workflow is influenced by the category of the change.

However, the major point - that it is an entirely subjective assessment and depends on your own organisation - still stands.

Dave

(I'll shut up now)
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