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Drafting of procedures and work instructions

Your procedures, your approach

Writing down procedures and work instructions is an exercise that requires a good synthesis effort and to be able to present the information in a succinct, clear and easily understandable or usable way for the people who will have to use it or assess, inspect or audit it.

A good idea is to use a common template or format for all your procedures and to establish a simple numbering system that relates to the main purpose of the procedure. There are several models, but that of ISO procedures is undoubtedly the simplest and the most complete. You are not required to use all fields or sections if some are not applicable. It is to your advantage to ask the question and settle this upfront before you set to work to write all your procedures.

Structure your approach

Once you have determined which control measures to put in place to meet the regulatory compliance requirements of a PCP for example or the specific points of a standard; you can start writing your procedures.

For each procedure you will have to write work instructions:

  • Simple and practical

  • Which reflect what is done in a direct and concrete way

  • Who are in line with the object and/or objectives and/or criteria that you have specified elsewhere in the procedure if applicable

  • Who clearly identify the responsibilities of all the people who are involved or already identified in the other sections of the procedure

  • Which include photos and/or simple diagrams when necessary

  • Which refer to other procedures or to manufacturers' guides or others when applicable

  • Who use the minimum number of words or text to facilitate execution

  • Which refer to regulatory compliance requirements where applicable

  • Which refer to all forms/documents to be completed without including them in the procedure

  • Etc.

In short, get straight to the point when writing procedures and/or work instructions and put yourself in the shoes of the people who are going to use it for the first time .

Simplify your approach

In the event that you have many procedures to write, and this is often the case, you will have to imagine a way to make it pleasant and easy to use, evaluate, validate, inspect and audit for all the staff but also for the representatives of the regulatory authority, audit firms and ultimately clients .

An interesting strategy is to group certain work instructions around a common topic into a single procedure. For example, if you are writing a procedure for the packaging of your products and you have to control packaging materials, residual oxygen, equipment preparation, etc .; you can then group all of these together by including them in a generic procedure on the packaging as work instructions instead of creating a procedure for each of these tasks or activities.

We are able to help you in writing your procedures and work instructions in a way that keeps it simple, efficient and allows your employees to understand what they need to do quickly and clearly. You will therefore be able to apply procedures and work instructions smoothly while minimizing errors, interruptions, non-compliances or CARs while respecting regulatory and normative compliance requirements and those of your clients ( including those stipulated in the GFSI standards). By simplifying and streamlining your approach, you will achieve productivity gains and minimize wasted time, non-compliances and associated costs.

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