Creating and Controlling Instructional Documents

Are your company’s instructional documents easy to interpret and effective in explaining to your employees how things are to be done? Are you struggling with the concept of document control?

This course covers the characteristics of effective instructional documents and the process of document control. It provides tools to create instructional documents that direct employees in the correct completion of activities. It demystifies the document control process, showing how easy it is to ensure availability of the most current instructional documents and eliminating one of the highest sources of nonconformities identified during ISO-based management system audits.

Topics covered include:

  • Instructional documents
    • Determining the level of detail needed
    • What content needs to be included
    • Who should write them and who should approve them
    • Tailoring documentation to the primary users
    • Terminology, technical language and acronyms
  • Document control
    • Simplifying the mystery to show how easy it really is
    • What you need to control
    • Controlling hard copies on the plant floor
    • Use of stamps, “controlled” and “uncontrolled”
    • Explaining “reference” documents

During the second half of the day, participants will use an actual activity at their place of employment to create an outline and devise primary components of an instructional document.

Hours: 8

Learning Outcomes

  • Identify the function and importance of essential components and activities of document control, and the type of documents they apply to
  • Discuss how to comply with the document control requirements of the ISO Standards
  • Recognize the function and importance of primary components of an effective instructional document
  • Apply primary components to create or update an instructional document outline

Intended Audience

Anyone responsible for writing or controlling instructional documents, such as procedures, work instructions and standard operating procedures


Identification of one of the following to present during the class: an activity at your company that requires the creation of instructional documentation, or an existing document for an activity in need of improvement. For either scenario, be prepared by gathering information about:

  • The activity
  • The individual(s) expected to perform/complete it
  • The skill level of the least competent/least trained person likely to be doing it
  • Metrics to assess whether the activity is effective
  • Tools required to perform/complete it

Credential opportunities

  • Digital badge: Anyone who completes the course and submits a satisfactory written response to TCIE-generated questions earns a digital badge.
  • Continuing Education Units (CEUs): TCIE grants 0.6 CEUs upon full attendance and participation of this course.

Course Schedule

8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

February 26, 2020

UB Center for Tomorrow

Instructor Bio: Don Bowes, CLP, CSSGB

Don provides training, management system development & implementation consulting, and procedure-writing assistance on a range of ISO-based Standards, including ISO 9001, ISO 14001, ISO 22000 and OHSAS 18001. He performed third party audits for 20 years. His client base covers a broad scope of industries, including food, petroleum, chemical, steel fabrication, printers, distribution, industrial/automotive/military equipment manufacturers, plastics, waste management, transportation, construction and chemical product suppliers. Don is also a Certified Lean Professional and Certified Six Sigma Green Belt. He delivers instruction and directs Lean projects on a wide range of techniques, including value stream mapping, 5S, set-up reduction, pull systems and Kaizen events. 


Another session may be scheduled if there is enough demand. Contact Mariah Glass at 
if interested.