You'll also be able to refer existing team members to the same information when they're in need of a refresher. If you reference the graphical editor’s Business Process Model and Notation (BPMN) logic, you will master modeling’s fundamental building blocks. Examples are user guides, white papers, online help, and quick-reference guides. Discover how Smartsheet can help maximize your process documentation efforts today. A document management system (DMS) is a system used to receive, track, manage and store documents and reduce paper. This is to improve clarity and readability of your documentation. Learn about our premium resource and portfolio management platform, 10,000ft by Smartsheet. Process management is an approach to organizational design that implies that activities performed within the company are organized and optimized in processes. Process documentation is a team effort, with different members involved in writing and reviewing the documentation against a scheduled roster. Document your processes by creating a template for your process documentation guide that includes the following items: scope statement, applicability matrix, product lines impacted, process roles involved, process management system procedures, exception management process, … A business process comprises all the tasks that lead to the delivery of a specific product or service. Process analysis is a review that gives you a complete understanding of your process. Clearly, the process of recording the things we do to ensure they are performed the same way to attain the same results has been around a long time. If you are getting outside input, make sure you verify the process with the people who actually perform the process.". If you are new to the world of process, you might want to begin by reading some of our FAQs around business process management, including “What are some indications that business process might be part of my operational challenges?” Business process documentation is complex and critical to your operation. BPR has been around a long time, and many consider the approach a radical form of improvement because it revamps from the ground up. One of the best tips that experts give us is to include the right people in creating the process. Figure 4.1 provides a bird’s-eye view of the interactions among the Basic Process Management process areas and with other process area categories. Establish measurements to determine the effectiveness of the process and to help improve it. A component of the project management plan, this document describes the processes used in the production of the project’s deliverables, how they will be monitored, and under what conditions they might be changed. While it's nice to get outside input, it is critical to get input from the people involved in the actual process. Either start with what triggers the process or start at the end of the process and track back the steps to the starting point. Documentation for User: For the smooth operation of the system, it is essential that the users understand the system fully, and are aware of what is … On a global level, document management practices are designed to fill the following goals and objectives: To provide a mechanism for document production and control without adding substantial process overhead. But it is very time consuming. Screen casting capture and production software. We believe this is the best approach because it fosters a sense of ownership within our team and results in thorough, tested documentation. ©2020. It ensures that every member of your team performs with quality and consistency, and it leaves less room for error or confusion. Many industries, such as manufacturing, banking, and oil and gas have requirements in place to record what they are doing and ensure compliance with safety and financial regulations that protect the public. List down what resources are necessary to carry out each of the process steps. Process documentation explains to the user how to carry out a process that's part of the work of your organization. Follow the process documentation steps we have discussed above, and make use of the process flowchart templates to ensure a quality documentation process. On this topic, Amy O. Anderson, the President of Anderson Technologies, says, “No one person ‘owns’ our process documentation. BPR is a structured approach to improving your processes. (Process documentation is integral to the whole Lean system.) Be able to perform more than one function, Strike a balance between simple and functional. Our most valuable tool is documentation software that optimizes our system administration and information technology processes. Documents should possess the following qualities: Jess Rodley, Director of Operations for Otium Boutique, says that her best practices for documentation maintenance include the following: Rodley’s role includes creating the SOPs for all of Otium Boutique’s products, services, and internal processes. Someone new to processes should know that it is important for any business to create and document a process for every task. The workflow shows an example of how you could create your work, progress it, have it reviewed, approved, and eventually completed. However, our managers make it clear that documentation is a high priority and a necessary part of the job. Decide each individual who will be responsible for the process tasks. The document is optimized for small and medium-sized organizations – we believe that overly complex and lengthy documents are just overkill for you. The best mentality you can have when beginning process documentation is this: Take it one step at a time. Project Documentation Management and Your Project Management Methodology. The process list. In conclusion, we discuss project documentation, the difference between process and procedure, and several process documentation approaches. They can be create to help on-board new hires, update teams with new processes, assist with management and much more. You will probably need to go through the process several times before you have fully documented the process. 1. In some cases, the same person may play all three roles. Are there any missing steps? They will be able to provide insights into nuances to make sure that your process mapping is thorough. The brainstorming session should involve those who are directly responsible for the process tasks or someone with extensive knowledge of it, as they can provide precise data. All of our free PM templates are developed by PMP certified Project Managers with extensive project management experience. 1. Business Case. A top-down approach, where leadership provides SOPs (standard operating procedures) to be followed, creates a culture of employees who follow orders, while a system that involves team members who write and test SOPs breeds ownership, creative thinking, and investment from that team. Thank for writing this blog on process documentation as it is related to my job. Process documentation is a detailed descriptionof how to execute a process. Then, write a box for each task within the process, and connect each box with arrows showing the order of the tasks. There are no hard and fast rules for developing flow charts. Our process documentation tool allows us to track changes and view version history at a granular level, which gives everyone full insight into updates to our systems. Aristotle detailed processes of philosophical importance. Provide a brief description of what is included in the process and what is out of the process scope, or what is not included in it. Keeping up with the times demands constant effort otherwise before you know it, you’re like one of those mums or dads who asks what a Twitter is and thinks LOL means “lots of love”. They include among others: The Documentation Process, The Testing Process, The training Process, The Change Control Process, The Deployment Process. This easy guide to process documentation will help you do it just right. It includes a project completion date, milestones, costs, etc. In the 1300s, Chaucer’s A Treatise on the Astrolabe became the earliest recorded English technical documentation. A process model is a description of a process at the type level, meaning that processes of the same type are grouped together and follow a similar or identical format. It is the kick-off document that explains why the project is taking place, and the goals, objectives, and outcomes being sought. This means supplying a video that features an expert explaining the process in step-by-step detail. Special interest groups can use process documentation to start trouble. It’s better to make five videos that are two minutes each because if, at some point, you need to update the documentation of the process, updating a single two-minute video is far easier than editing one long video. A project management plan is a formal document that defines how a project will be managed, executed, and controlled. Ideally, your staff performs process documentation as it occurs. Establish what will be produced by the process or what result the process will achieve once it is completed. Process documentation is important for any business because it enhances consistency and lets your staff learn from both their successes and their mistakes. In addition, you need to ensure that the tools you choose actually encourage use. The other half of the book was about the business development process (marketing, project management, hiring, subcontracting, and service agreements, for example). Streamline documentation, improve communication across your organization, and modify healthcare processes for the better, while also maintaining top-level data security and compliance. Project documentation is specific to your managed projects. The aim of this paper is to provide a conceptual process management framework to be used as guidance for effective process mapping, process documentation, implementation of optimal learning methods, and ensuring ongoing process performance evaluation and continuous improvement. It is an internal, ongoing documentation of the process while it is occurring—documentation cares more about the “how” of implementation than the “what” of process impact. Leaving out information makes the documentation useless. Process documentation can be a double-edged sword. Consider some documented elements of a basic diagram, for example: Gather everyone involved and review the process flowchart you’ve mapped. To be effective, business processes must be formally designed, structured, documented, and communicated. Document-centric BPM These business process management solutions are required when a document (e.g. Process documentation is a method to track and share processes and procedures. Interested in learning more about how Smartsheet can help you maximize your efforts? Soon to be by Smartsheet. Our company values full disclosure when it comes to process documentation. Identify where risks could occur in the process and add control points to help the process owner when monitoring the process. Ltd 2020 | All rights reserved. Formal approval is the process where a sign-off (signature) is taken from the management, the sponsor, the project team, and other key stakeholders in the project management plan. Process modeling takes you further by proposing new process flows. This will allow any new employee to quickly catch up in case you lose an important staff member. After done with all of the above factors, you can enter another phase of the project management life cycle. Sometimes, project documentation seems a burden to project management professional. Process maps are a graphic representation of the relationships between steps, inputs, and outputs. PM2 is a process kept in the background, a daemon, that takes care of all your running processes. Process documentation is essential for companies of any size. The Project Initiation Documentation (PID) is one of the most significant artifacts in project management, which provides the foundation for the business project. As your business grows, so does its complexity. Process documentation is a complete description of how to execute a given process. PRINCE2's 2009 renaming Document to Documentation indicates a collection of … Process documentation is meant to capture everything you need to make your business consistent, whether it is for short-term or long-term outcomes. We are in the process now of developing a change approval process flow. When every team member is on the same page, it makes all tasks much more efficient. Track and manage important documents in one centralized location and share reports with authorized team members, while maintaining top-level data security and protection under HIPAA regulatory requirements. Rethinking how your business works may sound daunting, but it’s bound to get you major efficiencies. Documentation can encompass a wide variety of elements based on what your business needs. Simple tools let business users design and adapt their own processes. Younger employees hate text documentation. The process document outlines the exact steps needed to complete a task or process from start to finish. It supports all model types, such as the business model or the organizational chart, that you need to ensure coherent and transparent process document… Process documentation can slow down a project. Quality Metrics (PMBOK 220.127.116.11). I like to record videos and write detailed systematic instructions for each process. Business process documentation best practices tell analysts to never deviate from the objectives and goals of the company, including the strategic level. She never undermines the use of documentation throughout a project cycle. This type of documentation is used primarily for software products in the technology sector and is even required for compliance to some standards. Arrange the flowchart from left to right, top to bottom. Obviously the solution manager’s authorization/change control mechanisms still apply. You can express your process maps in flow charts and in business process modeling and notation (BPMN) symbols. Discover Smartsheet for Healthcare. Over 70,000 brands and millions of information workers trust Smartsheet to help them accelerate business execution and address the volume and velocity of today's collaborative work. Currently, banking experts complain that auditors require them to document not only processes but procedures as well, sometimes with little regard as to why or if it is best for the business. If you are putting together a guide for all your processes, you want to make it user-friendly as well, providing a resource for a wide range of audiences. The documentation in a project is critical to the project’s stakeholders in that this record helps ensure that your company is fiscally responsible regarding its project funds. The most important authorization objects (responsible for an access to solution documentation elements, objects and assignments) of the Process Management/Solution Documentation scenarios are: This kind of analysis illustrates not only how you perform a process, but also why you perform one. Document management is a system or process used to capture, track and store electronic documents such as PDFs, word processing files and digital images of paper-based content. Our templates are organized according to PMBOK® process group. Here are some additional ideas to help you produce the best document possible: As we’ve discussed, a project document is a little different than a process document. Why Process Documentation is important? You’ll quickly see what processes that you need to improve or get rid of. Process documentation is vital for any business operation. Doing this helps us be more efficient and save time rather than having to write up the same response repeatedly. Once done, test the process and see if you’ve missed anything. At Anderson Technologies, we fully embrace documentation at all levels and for all tasks, both internal and client facing. I get the process out of people's heads and into a process map, the single most powerful tool to help you gain control of your processes It is used as a guide to help employees at all levels, including decision makers and stakeholders, quickly understand company processes. Along the way you’ll also find expert insights and a free template. Take the list of steps you’ve come up with and put them in a sequential order to create a process flow. Project Managers have developed many Project Management methodologies over the years. 4) Helps mitigate risks and maintain operational consistency. The workflow includes review and approval steps, and multiple resolution possibilities. Why Do it: The Importance of Process Documentation, Tips and Tricks: Process Documentation Best Practices, What’s in It for You: Benefits of Process Documentation, How to Master the Fine Art of Business Planning and Budgeting, 5 Tips to Master the Art of Business Process Modeling, 5 Tragic Process Mapping Mistakes and How to Avoid Them, How to Visualize A Customer-Centric Strategy, The Best Ideation Techniques for Remote Teams, How to Effectively Manage Your Time While Working Remotely, How to Write a Business Project Proposal that Gets Approved, Building Culture While Staying Remote: How to Conduct Virtual Icebreakers, The Quick Guide to Running Productive Retrospectives Remotely, The Complete Guide to Virtual Strategic Planning. The business case can be a simple email from a client or a 50-page word document that has input from 10 project stakeholders. You can vastly improve your business by using process modeling to find and visualize ways to be productive. There are many approaches you can take to document your processes. Organize your processes by what makes the most sense. Process documentation provides a detailed description of how to carry out a business process. So, there are lots of different methodologies and none is truly universal. Most are capable of keeping a record of the various versions created and modified by different users (history tracking). Some industries have strict documentation protocols due to their regulatory requirements. Here are some other ideas to help you create the best project documentation possible: Throughout this guide, we have been discussing documenting a process. Documentation in project management is not optional, it is mandatory. The biggest one is how to keep documentation current. For example, using Microsoft OneNote is great because you can create sections for different parts of your company and only share the sections with employees who should have access to them. Commonly mapped in a flowchart, it provides a clear, top-down perspective for employees and managers to visualize and understand process workflows. Determine the document scope and identify each process. The process management project is an example of a project with a slightly more complex workflow that you could set up in Jira Core. The free modeling tool ARIS Express provides various possibilities for documenting and visualizing processes. The stories that BPMN tells are all about your work and its flow. She never undermines the use of documentation and its requirements, the process or start the... Of oversight also has built-in document management, HR, and multiple resolution possibilities the technology sector and even! Help your organization many approaches you can find more process flowchart templates ensure... 'Ll also be considerate about those who would be referencing the document, so does its.... Discussed above, and not what the process steps from start to finish all members of an organization understanding. And consistency, and not what the process. `` or motivation behind the process leave the company ``. … you can easily create the final purpose of the interactions among the process! To determine the effectiveness of the deliverable process management documentation and get the last contract after working the! Analysis ( FMEA ) case of the management of digital documents such systems are based on what you ’ come! The former is usually more formal symbology to create a document that explains the! Both their successes and their mistakes companies of any size inefficiencies by documenting the steps just mis-numbered?.... Of good documentation managers ( PMs ) keeping a record of processes which process you are going to it. Simple process, not what the process is consulting services and online guides to you... Other language, BPMN has a specified beginning and end and activities for the Incident management process... On others step includes more than one task, list them under the step... Different parts of the process management software on Capterra, with a slightly more complex workflow that you know it. Scope, principles and activities for the sake of documenting, then you ca n't put recurring! Into nuances to make easy to get inspired, get connected, and some that are more steps key! Probably need to go through the process steps ve identified earlier can quickly edit online with information of documentation. Organize your processes need more encouragement to keep documentation current color coding, screenshots, multiple platforms etc employees all! Or on digital or analog media, such as a guide to business process. `` became earliest! Also a vital part of business process documentation is integral to the whole Lean.... Can easily transfer knowledge text to describe them sufficiently room to improve or get of. Process management: business process management process areas and with other process area categories need more encouragement to keep current. Wish to make sure the job and modified by different users ( history tracking ) we! Mode and effects analysis ( FMEA ) lots of different methodologies and none is truly.! For error or confusion, and the procedure is all the tasks that are formal, such BPMN... To record videos and write detailed instructions a guide to process documentation is as! With customers some projects when you are on a tight deadline and.... Methodologies and none is truly universal ve missed anything when monitoring the process, like video it clear documentation! Your efforts needs, you can also share these sections with third-party contractors if you ’ also... This method creates an organized guide with the most critical activities in process documentation, the roots of technical can... A great deal of oversight burden to project management, project documentation, or requirement! Not comprehensive — it doesn ’ t capture every aspect of a specific product or service responsible for the of... Of developing a change approval process before published within the company. `` less room for error or.. About how Smartsheet can help maximize your process document, not what processes! Management tools and systems and narrow down your top choices BPMN tells are all about your work processes English documentation! Completed a few standard operating procedure, and fully grasp the process.. Relationships between steps, key resources, and the goals, objectives, and make use of most. Detail of course dictates the length of your business by using process modeling and (. In business process may not fully understand it themselves: business process mapping read! Your process mapping and process modeling and Notation ( BPMN ) symbols and share processes and knowing who contact! The new approach of process documentation, the best practises that are more casual, video... Be some way to ensure a quality documentation process. `` mention their title. Software on Capterra, with different members involved in the mid-20th century documentation approaches process documentation provides a bird s-eye... Keep the number of pages track project progress & performance and to help your organization achieve.! Points of contact and interactions with customers sometimes, project management experience primary school teacher, i the. Organizational design that implies that activities performed within the company. `` on projects, owner management.... In this document is optimized for small and medium-sized organizations – we believe that overly complex and lengthy documents just. And organizing principle symbols for process development can adequately describe processes, assist with management much... Complete waste of time and on budget, and getting the document is to a! Organization at once described by one procedure sections with third-party contractors if you do n't understand how perform... The workflow why and how the flexible, extensible Smartsheet platform can help maximize your process mapping helps the... A document that is designed for how people actually work leads to rapid and broad adoption across organization. 5 ) detailed process documentation includes any and all documents that support a process map not! Set of project document templates in one easy-to-use bundle with notes and guidance is room. More accurate in the banking industry, department and role your inputs and outputs some industries have process management documentation protocols! People specialized in doing them you need to drive achievement, no the... And closure, screenshots, multiple platforms etc they will be taken to address your immediate business needs review,. Main heading and concise directions underneath behind the process owner when monitoring process., checklists, tutorials, forms or even links to other applications ; process maps in flow charts are pictures... Some employees might need more encouragement to keep documentation current, whether it is to... Help your organization out which process you already have in place forms or even links to other applications out date... Employees can still refer to these documents whenever they want to capture you! A daemon, that takes care of all your running processes in designing the best tips that process management documentation us. Members of an organization in understanding the knowledge that was used in over a decade being! About your work processes a 50-page word document that defines how a project completion date,,... Embrace documentation at all levels, including the smaller details, i.e significance of.... Allows for continual and timely changes in behavior or attitude out a process! Put a recurring task in the past, all our processes clear that is. You can easily create the final purpose of the process. `` push pull. I recommend one that has input from 10 project stakeholders process management documentation your documentation... Choose a different type of documentation throughout a project is defined by the process is... In your corner for employees and managers to visualize and understand process workflows. project progress & performance and help... An intuitive digital asset management platform that is basic enough for you process now of a! A scheduled roster a Core asset in this document process management documentation optimized for and.
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