Developing SOP, Job Descriptions and Employee EvaluationsAn S 426 Spring 2007
Developing SOP • Standard operating procedure (SOP) • Purpose – If it is written to fulfill only that purpose efficiently and effectively, it becomes a valuable quality assurance tool
Developing SOP • Ground rules for developing SOP 1. Make them short and to the point a. b. 2. Make sure the person who uses the procedure is a customer – not the expert 3. Develop procedures that can be read and used under stress 4. Use a simple numbering and identification system 5. Place procedures where the users can get to them
Developing SOP • Procedure writing process 1. Look at the job 2. Organize information a. May use a flow diagram to establish sequence of work b. Integrate with manuals and regulatory standards 3. Write down the information • Make sure the procedure is usable, accurate, has the right level of detail and fits general guidelines for procedures 5. Get it in the users’ hands
Developing SOP • Guidelines for writing procedures 1. Use short sentences 2. Use active voice (e.g. “turn the switch” instead of “the switch should be turned”). 3. Be direct – tell the reader what to do 4. Use short words 5. Do not use abbreviations or acronyms
Developing SOP • Guidelines for writing procedures 6. Be consistent with terminology 7. Do not assume the reader knows something 8. Put steps in right sequence 9. Use headings to help organize things – helps to find information 10. Use 1, 2, 3 – not one, two, three
Developing SOP • Problems to anticipate 1. Do not put the actions in the notes column 2. Clearly mark any warnings or cautions – use bold print or highlight 3. Put warnings before an action step, not after 4. Do not put multiple steps in a paragraph – separate so they are visible 5. Include emergency steps and highlight them
Developing SOP • Problems to anticipate 6. Use specific ranges, not plus or minus some value 7. Do not require calculations to use the procedure – putting them in notes is useful 8. Make sure you have included the flow-down of any upper level requirements into the procedure a. For example – the BQA policies for storing, handling and administration of medications and feed additives, need to flow-down into the procedures for applying these policies
Developing SOP • Labor • Good labor essential Cheap labor often very costly Working conditions and housing (if provided) may be as important as wages in keeping good employee
Developing SOP • Labor • Be sure employee knows: 1. rules governing the overall operation of the cattle operation and the rules for his particular job so he knows who is precisely expected of him 2. his: exact wages opportunity for advancement retirement benefits – social security, etc. health program–workmen’s compensation, etc. vacation time bonus or incentive payments, profit sharing
Developing SOP • Labor • Selection of employees: Probably key to healthy labor environment
Developing SOP • Labor Consider – 1. recommendations by people already employed 2. recommendations by past employees 3. recommendations by lot supervisors and foreman following interview 4. require resume 5. consider age relative to position wishing to fill 6. consider farm and rural background 7. consider number of previous jobs • consider prospective employee’s priorities – salary, interest in position, etc. 9. consider previous training – sometimes may know too much for position
Developing SOP • Labor • Hire good employees by following these 4 steps: 1. Know yourself 2. Know your business 3. Know the good and bad of the job 4. Sell the opportunity of working with you
Developing SOP • Labor • Communicating with employees To be sure consider the following: • Regularly visit employee’s work area, giving them chance to talk with you 2. Inquire how things are going – performance of equipment and machinery. Show an interest in his/her work. 3. Ask questions which cannot be answered “yes” or “no”, giving them a chance to talk. 4. Encourage employee to talk in private when a question or problem is personal in nature. 5. Take action quickly and then provide quick feedback when you have agreed to check into something.
Developing SOP To be sure consider the following: 6. Ask follow-up questions to help an employee get to the real point of concern. 7. Be aware of signs that someone wishes to talk to you about something but is either too shy or reserved to make the first move. 8. Listen when employees talk. Don’t interrupt. Ask questions or make a comment when employee has finished. 9. Use language the employee will understand when visiting with him/her. 10. Provide help and encouragement to an employee who has partially thought out an idea so proper credit is given.
Developing SOP To be sure consider the following: 11. When necessary to reprimand or correct an employee, do it in private. Explain your position and listen to theirs and then consider asking them to help work out a solution. 12. Make a “big deal” out of it when an employee does a particularly good job. Do it publicly. 13. Explain to employees why their work is important and how it relates to the total job being performed. 14. Indicate to employees future plans, changes that will be made and why, operating problems, etc.
Developing SOP • Counselors (i.e. Consultants) Lawyer Banker Accountant Veterinarian Insurance agent County extension director Area livestock specialist Broker