Effective Procedure Writing

When writing a procedure, keep in mind these questions:

• What is the objective of process? Know its purpose before starting.
• Which activities are part of scope? Agree on coverage of activities.
• Who is responsible for these activities? Identify key process players.
• What are inputs and who are suppliers? Identify inputs and providers.
• What are outputs and who are customers? Identify outputs and recipients.
• What is referenced as an information source? Identify related documents.
• What is the logical series of steps? Organize the steps in a logical sequence.
• How are the activities performed? Interview users and observe operations.
• Which departments use the process? Know readers and users of the process.
• What reports or records are generated? Identify records for the process.
• What forms are used? Don’t overlook forms used to collect information.
• When and where is the work performed? Identify timing and location
of work.
• What products are covered by the process? Define its applicability.
• What process documentation already exists? See if documents can be adapted.
• What are the requirements of the process? Know user and organization needs.
• What are the quality criteria? Identify the acceptance criteria.
• What are the related procedures? Ensure compatibility with other processes.
• Which tasks have or need instructions? Add or refer to needed instructions.
• How might the process be audited? Be able to demonstrate conformity.

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