How to write Standard Operating Procedure


Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) – a document that contains step by step information on how to perform a task. Available Standard Operating Procedure may need to change or update, or you may find yourself in a situation where you’ll need to write it, starting from scratch. It sounds scary, but it really is very, very, very thorough checklist. See step 1 to start.


Making your SOP


Choose your format


There is no right or wrong way to write SOP. In any case, your company may have a set of SOP, which you can turn for guidance on formatting, outlining in general terms, it is preferable to make it look. In this case, use an existing SOP as a template.


If not, you have several options:


A simple step by step format

It is suitable for short routine procedure that has a little of possible outcomes, and is fairly accurate. In addition to the required documentation and safety instructions, in fact, it is – just a bulleted list, consisting of simple sentences, pointing to the reader what to do.


Hierarchical stepwise format

Commonly used treatments for volume – more than 10 steps, including several solutions for the implementation, refinement and terminology. This is usually a sheet with a list of basic items and sub-items in a specific order.


The format of a flowchart

If the procedure is more like a map of the almost infinite number of possible outcomes, the use of block diagrams becomes the best choice. This option you must select the format in the case where the results can not always be predicted.


Consider your audience


There are three main factors that you should consider before creating your SOP:


Prior knowledge of your audience

Are they familiar with your company and its procedures? Do they know the terminology? The style of your presentation must conform to share knowledge and reader participation.


Capabilities language of your audience

Is there any chance to “read” your SOP will be the one who does not speak your language? If this probability is, it is better to include a large number of SOP signed images and diagrams.


The size of your audience


If a lot of people will be at the same time to read your SOP (who are engaged in different roles), then you need to format the document so that it looked more like a conversation in the play: the user 1 completes action on the following user 2, and so on and so forth. In this way, each reader will be able to see how he or she becomes a important part of a well-oiled machine.


Consider your knowledge


It all comes down to this: if you are the best to write this? You know, that entails the process? How it can go wrong? How to make it safe? If not, you better pass it to someone else. Poorly written, and what is worse, incorrectly written SOP, can not only reduce productivity and cause failures of organization, but it can also be safe and have a negative impact on your team or the environment. In short, you should not risk it.


If the project you have been assigned, or you feel compelled (or compelled) to finish it, then do not be ashamed to ask for help people who perform this procedure on a daily basis. Conducting the interview – this is a common part of any process of creating SOP.


Choose between short or long form of SOP


If you write or update the SOP for group individuals who are familiar with the protocol, terminology, etc., that will benefit the use of short and rapid STI, more like a list, and written in a concise form.


In addition to the main objectives and related information (date, author, ID number, etc.), it’s really just a list of the exact steps. In this case there is no need or refinements in detail.


Keep in mind the purposes of your SOP


Obviously, you have a procedure within your organization that continues to be repeated again and again and again. But is there any particular reason why this particular SOP helpful? Do i need to focus on security? Measures to ensure compliance? It is used for training or for everyday activities?


Here are some reasons why your SOP is essential for the success of your team:

– To observe all the standards
– To maximize production requirements
– To avoid adverse effects on the environment
– To ensure the safety
– To everything was going according to schedule
– To prevent disruptions in the production
– To use it as an instrument for learning


If you know that it should emphasize your SOP, it will be easier to structure all that is written around these points. So also it will be easier to see how important your SOP.


Standard Operating Procedure (Part 1) – Making your SOP


Read the second part