With the increase in processes and activities in present day organizations, it is but likely to make sure the methods and processes are documented in a well defined manner. The documentation of the processes will ensure that they are propagated in the right manner within the organization.
The complexity of the processes and the huge employee strength in companies make it necessary for processes to be documented. It becomes difficult for the process to be propagated by word of mouth or to be explained on a one-on-one basis. These features bring in the need for strategic process documentation and the necessity to follow it on a uniform basis.
The huge vastness of processes and strategies implemented in companies create the need for multiple documentation methods. Each of the processes conveys a deeper insight and is different from each other. Owing to this, the methods used within the organizations also differ between each other. Hence understanding the basics of process documentation is instrumental in following the process effectively.
What is Process Documentation?
It is a method of systematic and concise capture of critical project related plans and concepts so that the information can be shared with concerned individuals in future for smooth running of the project. The aim of process documentation is to learn from previous implementation experience and use it in the present situation according to the policy and strategy of the organization.
Benefits of Process Documentation
Process documentation helps in creation of systematic storage of information for easy access in times of need. It is used at times of problem resolution to develop flow chart and analysis strategy based on previous experience. This reduces the effort of the team in duplicating already done work.
The needed analysis and data, which was already procured, is used to fasten the analysis process in future. Not only does the project that documents the data uses for future reference but also third party vendors and organizations can use the data as a sample for similar scenarios or situations. These organizations use these data to formulate their own model of implementation.
Process Documentation Methods
Most of the methodologies related to process documentation record the program and feed the information to the decision makers and managers so as to make sure that the project decisions are taken in a fast and better way. There are many ways in which process can be documented and few of the most common methods are as below.
1. Documented Material –The process followed in an organization can be documented for later use and analysis. Such kind of documentation in material forms, either hard or soft copy will help the other involved members of the organization to stay updated of the process activities.
2. Structured Interviews – Major decision or important updates brought in by the management can be captured in the form of interviews and stored for later use purposes. This kind of documentation can help capture intricate details of the decision.
3. Case Studies – In certain scenarios of decision making, the process and activities that are followed can be documented in the form of case studies. These case studies can be stored in appropriate form for future implementation of similar models.
4. Flow Chart and Process Diagrams – A particular process or procedure can also be depicted in the form of flow diagrams. For example, solution for a troubleshooting process can be documented though workflow diagrams so as to enable easy resolution. This kind of documentation will help teams resolve issues even in the absence of key resources.
Steps for Process Documentation
Process Documentation is done in simple steps and can be used to provide help to the team members during the required time. It is first essential to capture all the relevant details of the process that needs to be documented. Careful attention needs to be paid at the time of documentation to ensure that the data entered is accurate and simple. It is also necessary to choose the best model of documentation according to the process.
Once the documentation of the details have been done, the material needs to be reviewed and approved by the manager or leader so as to ensure the correctness of the details. It is also advisable that any changes to the procedure or the decision be captured in versions and updated for future use.