Tips on how to create an effective SOP, procedure or blueprint

First - please see this page:

This article covers some practical tips on how to document your SOP or procedure as a blueprint in Tallyfy.

Start high-level then add low-level steps later

It's not a great idea to start very low-level on your SOP description, unless your team wants/needs that.

You should start with fairly high-level milestones or steps which people "check in" to. That's because:

  1. It might be too much detail for people who generally know how the process works already.
  2. It might be too cumbersome for people in your team to mark each individual task done in Tallyfy if there's tons of micro-tasks.
  3. It might hamper initial adoption of Tallyfy in your team if you make it all about control at the "micro" level. You can always move into low-level/micro-level tasks later.
  4. Sometimes, processes change or improve quickly. If you went in with too much detail right now, you may have to delete or re-create a lot of content.

As time goes on - you can always insert more steps/expand your SOP/procedure.

Make sure step titles start with a clear verb or action

Try to avoid typing in a step title like "Manage client".

Good step titles look like this:

  • Write an email to the client with a status update
  • Approve the gross spending figure in the budget
  • Complete the sales proposal and upload the final PDF

This makes it clear to everyone what's actually happening on that task.

Make much better use of rich media like videos and photos

People say a picture speaks a thousand words. Most of the time, that is very true.

Videos and photos are just more engaging for descriptions. One of the most powerful version of videos for steps is screencasts. If what you are explaining is actually done on a computer screen - screencasts make it very easy for people to picture what to do and where.

Screencast videos can save you typing pages and pages of written instructions, which is hard for you and hard for the reader to follow as well. Lots of apps for Windows and Mac let you record screencasts. Google for "screencast recording software".

Ensure you assign who should do each task

Many people forget to invite or enter assignees into a procedure or SOP.

Add links to documents and external resources

Sometimes, a form or document already exists somewhere else. It's best to either upload it to Tallyfy - if you wish to terminate the old location and version, or hyperlink to it from within the Tallyfy's editor

Delete your old SOP - if you have moved things to Tallyfy

Keeping old versions of processes lying around is guaranteed to cause confusion. One of the many valuable parts of Tallyfy is that a single process, SOP or how-to is always at the latest, single version. 

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