This blog is the final post in the series on “Process Documentation”.
- Process Documentation - an introduction
- The importance of documenting key processes
- Benefits of process documentation
- Understanding the 3 Ps
- What is a policy?
- What is a process?
- What is a procedure?
- How to design an effective process workflow
- How to implement your process workflow
- Quick steps for creating process documentation
Once you design your workflow, it’s time to document that workflow! This blog takes you through some quick steps for documenting your process workflow.
Step 1: Identify the process – think of a name that is intuitive and easily relatable to the purpose of the process.
Step 2: List the objectives of the process clearly.
Step 3: Define the audience and the scope of the process document – specify to whom the document is applicable and what is covered by the document. Also, to avoid ambiguities, mention any exceptions where required.
Step 4: List the terms and acronyms that are specific to the process and provide definitions.
Step 5: Provide links to any relevant references, such as regulatory docs, standards, or other processes that may be related.
Step 6: Introduce the process – provide a quick overview of the entire process.
Step 7: Describe the workflow – include the workflow diagram you had created during the process design phase, which shows the logical flow of the process.
Step 8: Identify the process inputs – list the items/data/raw materials that are required for completing the process. You would have identified these during your workflow design phase.
Step 9: Identify the process outputs – state what should be achieved once the process is completed; your workflow would identify this as the end result of the process.
Step 10: Provide a breakdown of the process into sequential tasks.
Step 11: Identify the resources required for each task in the process.
- Define the owner of the task and the other personnel who need to be involved for its successful completion – i.e., who has specific oversight and responsibility for each task and who all should be involved in the execution. If there are many tasks and there are multiple owners, for clarity you can create a table to define the user roles and responsibilities.
Step 12: Describe the process in detail and the typical workflow for each task in the process. Identify any exceptions and include steps to address them.
- Describe where each task begins and ends, and also what actions/triggers initiate it.
- If required, create workflow diagrams to explain in detail any sub-workflows for the tasks.
- Keep the steps for each task to a minimum and make it easy for the user to follow.
- If a task has too many steps, consider breaking it up into multiple tasks.
Step 13: Identify risk areas – include check points and measures to identify risks and mitigate them.
Step 14: Maintain a revision history table at the end to capture any updates to the document once it is released (what the change is, the date when it is made, and who makes the change). This is especially important for maintaining version control if you do not use an electronic document management system in your organization.
About the AuthorFollow on Linkedin More Content by Surya Nair