When you started your dispensary business, you had one store and a few employees to manage. As your store became busier and you hired more employees, you probably started to realize that you needed to streamline and standardize your methods. This is why you should implement SOPs as soon as possible.
What is a SOP?
A SOP, or Standard Operating Procedure, is a clear list of instructions that all employees have to observe. Every department in a business needs to have an SOP for each employee assignment. Also, your business needs an all-encompassing dispensary SOP to show how each department contributes to the business as a whole. SOPs usually take the form of a flowchart or a numbered or bulleted list.
Why Your Dispensary Needs SOPs?
Standard Operating Procedures are vital to a dispensary for several reasons. As your dispensary marketing becomes more successful and your business grows, you will probably expand to more locations. Your business can rely on SOPs to guarantee that employees are trained in the same way at each location. Your customers will expect your stores to provide the same quality products and services every time they make a purchase. Having your employees follow SOPs confirms that this happens.
As you know, your dispensary needs to abide by many laws that are subject to frequent changes. Incorporating these directives into your SOPs ensures that your business obeys them. When your processes are well-documented, it is much simpler to revise them when regulations fluctuate.
Onboarding is also faster and smoother when you establish SOPs. They break down your training into small parts that are easy for your employees to learn. Your workers will not become overwhelmed with too much information at once, potentially leading to lower turnover. Teaching an employee to adhere to SOPs can serve as your entire training program. You can also keep your employees engaged by making high-performing workers a part of the process when you amend your SOPs.
Standard Operating Procedures also increase profits. When workers have SOPs, they complete their tasks faster and more accurately. Overtime is reduced or eliminated, saving your business money on payroll expenses.
How Do You Create a SOP?
First, form a SOP committee with your co-owners, managers and best employees. They will be able to tell you how they accomplish each of their duties. Basically, your SOP will be answering: who, what, when and why.
An effective SOP starts with a list of who needs to carry out the procedure. What specific job titles are required to be familiar with the SOP? This should be followed by a description of the SOP’s purpose. Employees must understand immediately why it is vital for them to conform to the SOP. Next, communicate when the process will be executed. What circumstances trigger the start of the process? For example, if the SOP details how to close out a cash drawer, the SOP would specify that it is to be completed at the end of the employee’s shift. Finally, insert the procedure itself. This is where you create a flow chart or numbered list based on what you discussed with your SOP committee.
Make sure that you avoid jargon and other hard to understand verbiage in your SOPs. Each step in the SOP should be uncomplicated and succinct. If you must use special terms, explain them plainly. When you revise a SOP, the date and revision number should appear in the top or bottom margin of the page.
If this seems like a complicated and time-consuming process, it is. It is highly recommended to hire professionals who are well-versed in creating SOPs to help you.