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How To Capture Exceptions in Procedures

There are different schools of thought on this. Number the steps starting at 1 and

Continue upwards, e.g. 2, 3, 4, etc.

Or

Use 1.1, 1.2, 1.3 for sub-steps.

Or

Use If Then Else tables for sub-steps.

If Then tables let you present information is a nice, attractive manner and lets the reader see the different options available to them in a grid format.

How to Use If Then Tables For Complex Procedures

A simple example is applying for a bank loan.

If Then And
If the value of the property is less than $500k Deposit 10% of value Minimum deposit is 50k.
If the value of the property is less than $700k Deposit 12% of value Minimum deposit is 70k.
If the value of the property is less than $900k Deposit 15% of value Minimum deposit is 90k.

The advantage of using an If Then table is that the user can drill-down and find the EXACT piece of information they need. For example, they need to know there is a 50k minimum deposit.

The alternative is to present the information as a list. While this may be easier for you to write (i.e. you don't need to create tables) it is harder for the reader to locate the specific piece of information.

  • If the value of the property is less than $500k, you must deposit 10% of value and the minimum deposit is 50k.
  • If the value of the property is less than $700k, you must deposit 12% of value and the minimum deposit is 70k.
  • If the value of the property is less than $900k, you must deposit 15% of value and the minimum deposit is 90k.

They have to scan the entire sentence until the locate the information and then read the next line to compare one piece against the other. Not easy to do when you're tired or in a crowded bank branch with small children running around.

Over the coming weeks, We will drill down and look at other ways to write your procedures.

Tomorrow, we will look at how to test the procedure.

Table of Contents

  1. Before you Start Writing Your Standard Operating Procedures
  2. How To Find Procedure Writers
  3. How to Get a Budget
  4. How To Cost The SOP Project
  5. How to Get Management Support For Your SOP Project
  6. How to Find An Executive Champion
  7. How To Setup the Procedure Writing Team
  8. How To Define Roles in the Procedure Writing Team
  9. How to Create SOP Writing Guidelines
  10. How to Organize the Information Gathering Phase
  11. How to Test the Current As Is Business Process
  12. How to Examine Alternatives To The Current As Is Process
  13. How to Write Standard Operating Procedures
  14. How to Write Your First Procedure
  15. How to Number Each Step in the Procedure
  16. How To Capture Exceptions in Procedures
  17. How to Use If Then Tables For Complex Procedures
  18. How to Test Standard Operating Procedures
  19. How to Get SMEs to Test Procedures
  20. How & When to Sign Off the Procedure
  21. How to Publish the Standard Operating Procedures
  22. How to Control Documents
  23. How to Use Track Changes
  24. How to Use Naming Conventions
  25. How to Convert SOPs to PDF
  26. How to Upload SOPs to the Document Management System
  27. How to Create a SOP Document Archive
  28. How to Backup SOPs Archives & Store Offsite
  29. How to Implement Procedures
  30. How to Schedule Assessments

Standard Operating Procedure Template - Download Now Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) Template
Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) Template Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) Template

Document Control

  • Process Improvement - writing SOPs provides opportunities to refine current processes. Feedback received during this activity helps identify limitation of the current processes and potential problems that may arise.

Document Control

  • Regulatory requirements - SOPs help address legislative and regulatory requirements. Developing and maintaining SOPs is an effective way to address safe work practice regulations.
  • Staff Performance - SOPs clearly describe what staff are expected to perform in the workplace. SOPs remove ambiguity and provide an objective mechanism for evaluating their performance.
  • Standardization - SOPs identify roles and responsibilities. SOPs clarify decision-making requirements and chain of commands.

Clarifications Spreadsheet

  • Training material - SOPs can be used in training programs, workshops and exercises. SOPs improve the understanding of work requirements and identify potential problems.

Buy this template

Download the SOP Template Pack

The templates included in this pack are in Microsoft Word and Microsoft Excel format. You can download all templates online for only $9.99.

More details about the SOP template pack are here.

The template pack includes the following documents:

SOP Template (Detailed) 7 pages Download Word template
SOP Single Template 1 pages Download Word template
SOP Guidebook 11 pages Download Word template
Sample - RFP Pre-Issuance Procedure 7 pages Download Word template
SOP Log Book 7 pages Download Word template
SOP Document Control 3 pages Excel templates
  • Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) Manual - this is used for writing and maintaining multiple SOPs, for example, all SOPs for the HR Department.
  • Standard Operating Procedures template - this is used for writing and maintaining standalone SOPs.
  • Standard Operating Procedures Guidebook - this describes how to write SOPs. The guidebook includes the following sections:
    • Planning
    • Requirements
    • Writing Standard Operating Procedures
    • Level of Detail
    • Consistency
    • Writing Style and Language
    • Writing Conventions
    • Numerical Information
    • Component Information
    • Procedure Titles
    • Headings
    • Step Numbering
    • Procedure Organization
    • Revision Status
    • Precautions and Limitations
    • Prerequisites
    • Terms, Definitions, Acronyms, and Abbreviations
    • Writing Action Steps
    • Writing Conditional Action Steps
  • Standard Operating Procedures Log Book - this is used for controlling new SOPs, numbering SOPs, and ensuring that all SOPs are authorized before creation.
  • Excel spreadsheets - these 3 Excel files will help you manage document control, clarifications that arise during the analysis phase and monitoring roles and responsibilities.
  • Sample template - this sample template documents the pre-issuance procedure when developing Request for Proposals.

Document Control

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Supports Windows 98, 2000, 2003, 2007, 2010, XP, Vista & Apple Mac

* Note: All prices are in US$ and for a single user license.

FAQs

Q: What file formats are the templates?

A: Microsoft Word and Excel. The files work in Word 97-2010. They also work on Apple Macintosh. 

Q: How soon can I download them?

A: You can download the files instantly.

After you pay online, you are automatically sent to a page where you can download the templates online.

Q: What is the End User License Agreement?

A: You can read the License Agreement here

Need to know more?

Drop me a line at ivan at klariti dot com and I'll get back to you asap.



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