Operating Procedures (SOPs, SWPs, OPs or Emergency Procedures)

On this page

The Procedure window in view mode


What Are Procedures

A Safe Operating Procedure can be known as a SOP, SWP, Safety Standard, Emergency Procedure or Operating Procedure just to name a few.
They are written documents setting out the logical sequence of steps that must be followed to safely perform a task or to ensure an emergency is handled correctly.
Procedures can be delivered as a document, a video or PowerPoint or an audio presentation.

The directions given in a procedure must be easily read or viewed so any anybody will be able to understand them.
They must be accurate.

A procedure is used when;
• A Risk Assessment has identified a risk in a work task and a procedure is written as an Administration control measure.
• Items of machinery and equipment require that they are operated in a specific way.
• Where emergency situations are better handled by a pre-planned procedure.
• Good overall risk management is a goal and procedures that ensure the risk of carrying out a task is minimised, and workers know how to perform the tasks safely.

Creating a Procedure

Under “Policy & Procedures” on the menu bar choose “SOP”. (Full Management System)

For single applications choose “SOPs” on the menu bar.

If you haven’t created any yet this will be blank.

To create a new procedure click the “+” symbol in the bottom right corner.

Now enter the details in each of the fields. Use the footer notes or, by hovering over a field, a tooltip will appear for guidance as what needs to be entered.

Once the general details have been completed press “Save” to move to the next step in the process.

New Button

To create a new record find the + symbol in the bottom right corner

Task, Hazard, Risk and Controls

The Procedure has all the general details and now is the time to add the Tasks, Hazards, Risk and Controls for each of the tasks associated with the Procedure.

Scroll down the record to the Task, Hazards, Risk and Controls and click on the “+ NEW” button

Add a new task to the procedure

Adding task to SOP

Now enter the details in each of the fields. Use the footer notes or, by hovering over a field, a tooltip will appear for guidance as what needs to be entered.

Step Order – This is where you assign the order of the steps e.g. 1. NOTE; If you miss a step don’t worry. Just assign a decimal point e.g. 1.01 and the task will automatically fall into sequence.

Hazards – The Hazards section is where we identify any potential hazards relating to each task. We then assess the risk of each hazard. The risk is the likelihood of the hazard occurring and the consequences if it does. The Risk will be automatically assigned from your selections.

To help with this, you can open a Risk Matrix by clicking on the icon on the page.

Risk Matrix Icons

Controls – Controls are the measures we need to implement to either eliminate the hazard or reduce its risk. We need to do this for each of the hazards we’ve identified.

Deciding on suitable control measures is much more simple if you use the Hierarchy of Controls matrix. You can open this from the icon in the header of this form

Residual Risk / Residual Consequences – Choose from the drop-down list the likelihood of this hazard occurring AFTER controls are in place and what would be the consequences if it did. The Residual Risk will be automatically be assigned from your selections

Click the “Save and New” button to continue adding in tasks, the hazards associated with the task and the control measures you will be implementing.

Once all the steps are in click the “Save” button.

Workers Acknowledgment

One of the most powerful aspects of Simple WorkSafe is a document trail of workers who have sighted, read, understood and agree to commit to your procedures.

So many court actions are against owners who had all the health and safety items in place but had no way of proving that their workers had seen the documentation.

On both the full management system and the single applications, everyone has access to safe operating procedures and emergency procedures. Once the workers have read the document they go to “My Health & Safety” on the Home page and then click “My SOP acknowledgements”. On the single application “Acknowledge Sops” is on the menu bar.

After they have read, understood and agree to commit to the procedure they click the “+” symbol in the bottom right corner to open the acknowledge form.

The SOP Acknowledge form. Choose the SOP you are acknowledging, select the date and sign you have read, understood and agree to commit to the procedure.

Acknowledge the SOP

A worker will see all the SOP’s they have read and acknowledged under “My Health & Safety’ – “My Sop Acknowledgements” from the home page or on the single application “Acknowledged SOPs from the menu bar.

All signed acknowledgements are attached to the procedure, NOTE: only Managers and Supervisor’s roles can see the acknowledgements.

Signed acknowledgements attached to the procedure. 

Workers who've signed

Duplicating a Procedure

The Duplicate Procedure button on the record

Duplicating a SOP

A really handy tool on Simple WorkSafe is the Duplicate button.

Using this tool enables you to duplicate a procedure any number of times and simple edit it where required.

This tool saves countless hours of creating multiple procedures. Especially where you have assets or jobs similar but may require additional steps, for example, a ladder an extension ladder.

Simple click the Duplicate Procedure button, navigate to the newly duplicated assessment WHICH WILL ALWAYS BE AT THE TOP OF THE LIST.
Now just edit the new procedure wherever you need to make it a completely new record, without needing to recreate the entire process.

Printing Reports and QR Labels

There are a number of reports that can be printed.

Lists reports are lists of records such as a list of all the operating procedures on the application.

Detail reports are reports that contain all details of a particular record.

An extra function on the reports of procedures is the QR Codes.

You can print out labels that have QR codes. Stick the labels on an appropriate place such as the inside door of a tractor or on the base of a lathe.

Anyone can scan the QR code with a phone and see the procedure. This is an advantage if you have volunteers or other people who don’t have access to your health and safety system.

To find the QR Codes open the record you wish to print, go to the 3 dots at the top of the page, then down to “Reports” choose which size label you wish to print.

Reports are available in PDF, MS Word, MS Excel and image formats.

List reports are available by pressing the Report button on the header of the list.

Open a List Report

Print Repor tList

Open a Detailed Report and the QR labels

QR code to print