Hiren Kanani

Hiren Kanani

January 2, 2023 10 minutes to read

How to Create Digital Work Instructions [+ FREE Template]

How to Create Digital Work Instructions [+ FREE Template]

Having good work instructions is a plus point for industries. This not only enhances the safety of your workers, but operations are carried out smoothly. But success is only possible when work instructions are effective and properly formatted. For many industries, paper-based instructions were the only options before the emergence of digital work instructions. But having a paper-based instruction was itself a challenge for them, as it was difficult to keep record of things.   

This was past, now all thanks to the emerging technologies like AR that can help you create predefined work instructions. AR-based Digital work instructions can be shared with anyone, anytime. Most importantly it can be stored as a future reference, which will assist in training new employees. 

In order to help streamline your operations and improve productivity of your frontline workers, consider creating digital work instructions.  

At Plutomen, we are here to guide you through the process of creating these step-by-step instructions so that you can streamline your process and win in your industry.  Let’s get started! 

What are Digital Work Instructions?   

In every organization, there are certain instructions that have to be followed, be it performing a certain process on a machine or installing it. These work instructions have become an important aspect for many manufacturing industries. It assists in training, maintaining consistent procedures, and most importantly reduces possible errors or issues. 

However, it is a hectic job for many to maintain these instructions on paper and circulate it. And so, to convert this tedious job into a hassle-free process, the concept of digital work instructions was introduced.  

Digital work instructions not only optimize processes, but also boost consistency. It provides users with step-by-step instructions, unlike paper-based instructions. Not only that, it even provides necessary support to workers in completing their tasks accurately without any supervision. 

The benefits don’t end here! The biggest advantage of digital work instructions is that you can update, revise and share your documents with users in just one click. Moreover, it is available when needed, helpful in training new workers and increases worker productivity. Isn’t it a great deal? 

Why Create Digital Work Instructions?  

Creating digital work instructions is neglected by many organizations as they feel that the process may not be simple and can’t be easily followed. And many don’t want to give their efforts to create digital work instructions. But always remember that work instructions are necessary for an organization’s success and for running operations smoothly. Digital work instructions help the industry to: 

  • Streamline Manufacturing performance
  • Avoid misinterpretations 
  • Access your documentations anywhere 
  • Eliminate defects and enhancing product quality 
  • Improve communication between departments 

 Just don’t focus on short-term swings. Digital work instructions pay off in the long run and fixes issues instantly.  

Advantages of Digital Work Instructions Over Printed Work Instructions  

The main purpose of digital work instruction is to standardize and create consistency in the execution of the work steps by describing each step-in detail. There are many advantages of having digital checklists through which both organization and workers are benefitted. Let’s see some advantages of digital work instructions compared to printed work instructions 

Quickly Updated 

Whether you want to change the process or need to add any step, it can easily be updated in digital work instructions. The changes are generally done by the production manager and are instantly accessible at all points in real-time.  

Visual Elements Works Great 

Adding photos, videos, or interactive PDFs will assist in the understanding of the task instructions; this saves time for frontline workers. Moreover, in the rise of the social media age, visual representations are essential. 

Ease On-boarding Training Process 

Digital work instruction is very much useful in the on-boarding training process. Instead of using paper-based instructions, it is better to use digitized instruction which can be easily available anytime, anywhere.  

Increases Efficiency 

Through digitizing work instructions, frontline workers are more aware of tasks. Here each step is clearly highlighted, enhancing transparency, and necessary updates in the process can be done.  

Digital Documentation 

Audit & inspection related work instructions are carried out smoothly and can be reviewed on dashboards. Now frontline workers like field technicians no need to carry any printed manuals as they can receive instructions directly from their devices such as smartphones or even a pair of AR smart glasses. 

How to Design Digital Work Instructions?  

Human errors are inevitable; however, you can reduce the risk of making them. There are various ways to reduce human errors, one of the most effective ways is providing digital work instructions. Through this it can be assured that they will not repeat the same errors again. It will work as a valuable contribution for the organization. For this, the following principles should be taken care of while designing work instructions: 

  • Make sure it is user-friendly 
  • Language is clear and easy to understand 
  • Can be used effortlessly  
  • Easily available whenever needed 

Having a proper structure for creating work instructions should be the top-most priority for any company. Hence, the structure should be clear and in proper sequence so that it is easily understood. To help you create digital work instructions, here is the step-by-step process for it. 

How to Create Digital Work Instructions: Step-by-step Process  

Creating a digital work instruction can be a bit challenging task, but now it doesn’t have to be. To solve this issue, you just need the right approach that needs to be followed. But fret not,; we will be learning how to create work instructions properly, no matter whichever industry you are in.  

For better understanding, let’s take an example of a work instruction which can be used for installation and commissioning of Insta-Valve 20-24.  

#1. Identify the Purpose of the Task 

 The first step that lays in the work instruction is to identify purpose of the task or process that you want to document. Before moving further ensure that you are clear about the process on how to carry out. This will give you a detailed idea about the necessary tools or materials required for creating the work instructions.  

In our example, we need to create work instruction for Insta-Valve 20-24 installation. So, the purpose of the task can be written as: 

“The purpose of this work instruction is to detail the installation procedure of Insta Valve 20- 24″.

#2. Identify and List Down the Persons Responsible to Follow the Work Instructions 

It is essential to list the people responsible for maintaining the instructions. Usually, Qualified employees or workers who are familiar with the work procedure or process are assigned to create work instructions.  

For example, following persons can be added under the heading of Responsibility: 

Plant manager, Universal Assemblies 

Assembly Operator 

Quality Manager 

#3. List Down the Safety Precautions or Prerequisites Before Executing the Task 

Some tasks may involve risks, so it is important to mention Safety Measures. Always keep in mind that occupational safety plays an important role in work instructions. Hence, the document which consists of safety measures can work well for the frontline workers. Under the heading of Warning, you can provide details regarding safety measures and things to know before usage. This additional information will ensure a safe and effective work environment. 

From our example, the safety precautions can be listed as follows: 

  • Handle the equipment’s with Care 
  • Don’t forget to wear safety gloves and assisted smart glasses 

#4. Breakdown the Task into Two or More Sub-tasks  

In this step, if more than one action is needed it is suggested to break down the task into two or more sub tasks. With this, users will understand each step more clearly. To be more effective use action-oriented language and try not to exceed by 12 steps. This will ensure consistency in your work. 

#5. Include Powerful and Interactive Visuals to Deliver Important Ideas  

Note down that while creating effective work instructions it is essential to add interactive images, diagrams, or videos that will help to demonstrate the steps or task. Visual materials are the perfect way to capture attention and enhance learning. Be careful at this stage, because unclear or poorly showcased images may hamper the process.  Hence, choose the visuals that are clear and of high definition to support the information. 

Steps for Insta-Value 20--24

#6. Proofread the Document  

As work instructions are created to assist frontline workers to perform their tasks safely and accurately, they must be precise. So once the format is ready, you need to proofread the document to ensure that every aspect included in the document is correct, clear, and concise. To make the document more readable, simplify the complicated words or sentences. This will help those involved in executing the task and in identifying the errors and to see that the work instructions are up-to-date.    

#7. Test Work Instructions 

Till this step, your work instructions will be finalized. Right? Now you need to identify whether the work instructions that you have created are successful or not. So, for that testing is required which will ensure that your instructions are easy to follow and understandable.  

To test, ask someone to perform the task that you have created. Through this, you might be aware where you need further information or explanation. Afterwards, you can make notes of what is to be changed or added on your document.  

#8. Publish the Work Instruction in Whatever Digital Format You Feel Convenient  

Finally, your work instruction is ready! But how will you present your document? You are suggested to save in that format which is easily accessible to your organization. There are a number of ways available to save documents like in a PDF, Video, Word document, image, etc. After saving your document you can share it with your team members.  

 #9. Update Information Regularly  

Lastly, keep the document updated as processes and procedures never remain the same. As said – change is the only constant, systems improve, products get updated, and available new technologies thus require updating the document to stay helpful. It’s very crucial to update information to prevent it from being outdated.  

Free Digital Work Instructions Template  

Now it’s time to put digital work instruction into practice! It is needless to say that every organization has a different set of work instructions. But every industry wishes to start and learn new things to make progress. Hence to ensure consistency in your organization it is essential to have a digital work instruction template. To give a clearer idea, we have a ready template that is sure to help you. 

Digital Work Instructions Template

Standardize Business Operations Through Digital Work Instructions  

In many organizations digital work instructions have become an important part for daily operations. It makes sure that every task is carried out accurately & efficiently. By this, it preserves quality and business operations run smoothly. Turning towards the digital work instructions, allows your team to perform better. With Plutomen Workflow, your frontline workers will hit new levels of success and make your team productive, safe, and accurate. Through the right instructions your organization will achieve more engaging outcomes.  

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Hiren Kanani

Hiren Kanani

CTO, Cofounder of Plutomen

With 10+ years' experience of Hiren Kanani has helped Plutomen ensure smooth communication between the company and the client for swift project delivery with fewer iterations. He is CTO & founder at Plutomen.

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