Last edited 21 Oct 2020

Standard operating procedure

Contents

[edit] Introduction

A standard operating procedure (SOP) is an overview of the processes behind an operation or task. A standard operating procedure provides formal (typically written) guidelines for workers about how to proceed.

[edit] Applications

The general nature of the instructions is what differentiates a standard operating procedure from a method of procedure (MOP), which is extremely detailed and documents specific step-by-step instructions. A method of procedure (or several methods of procedure) can be incorporated into standard operating procedures.

By formalising processes, a standard operating procedure creates uniformity in how operations or tasks are performed. It also informs new employees about acceptable business policies and practices.

Standard operating procedures are extensively used to document manufacturing processes and health and safety practices.

[edit] ISO 9001

International Organisation for Standardisation ISO 9001 specifies the need for a quality management system where an organisation can demonstrate its consistent ability to meet the requirements of clients, stakeholders and any applicable regulatory requirements. By creating standard operating procedures, organisations can incorporate these standardised instructions into their ISO 9001 policy documentation.

For more information on this standard, visit ISO 9001.

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[edit] External references

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