Creating a Role or Task Based Training Manual

Have you started creating a training manual and gotten in over your head? Or is your training manual project taking FOREVER to complete?

You aren’t alone. Creating intelligent and useful documentation is definitely a daunting task. If not organized properly from the beginning, your materials will likely take forever to complete and be extremely short-lived. We don’t want to see you waste your precious time!

A word of caution: Don’t fall victim to one-size-fits-all or off-the-shelf documentation. Unfortunately, there are very few shortcuts when it comes to documenting your vital (and confidential) information. The reason for this is your company culture and the unique mix of products, services and tools utilized by your company. Your documentation should be as unique as you are as a company.

If you haven’t checked out our Process Documentation 101 eCourse, you may want to do that first. Click here to enroll (its free!).

Process Documentation 101

The first thing you need to determine when writing your training manual is whether you are writing role based or task based documentation. This is critical.

Example of role based documentation: A role based training manual makes the most sense for an organization which hires workers into specific roles. School workers are a great example. If you work in a school, you may be a teacher, secretary, janitor, principal, vice principal, counselor, etc. but you will likely not switch between roles. You are hired into a particular role and will continue in that role until a significant change involving human resources is made.

Example of task based documentation: A task based training manual makes the most sense for an organization which needs to document specific tasks which will be performed by workers who may be in different roles or when most workers are in the same role. A machine shop is a good example. Multiple workers in a machine shop will perform the same task and each worker will have varying degrees of experience and proficiency. Regardless of experience, a particular task must be performed your [company] way every time.


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