How To Create And Maintain Effective IT Documentation
IT documentation is key to increasing efficiency and productivity throughout your business as it reduces the amount of time wasted hunting for vital information. When processes are documented consistently, individual knowledge can be accessed by every member of your team – critical details are at everyone’s fingertips.
Why is IT documentation important?
This means that issues can be resolved quickly, saving you time and money. In fact, research has shown that companies with a high level of documentation benefit from higher revenue growth and increased cost savings. We’ve already spoken about the advantages of regular recording of processes, but here’s how you can create good habits and ensure your documentation is effective.
How to create quality IT documentation.
Think of it as a ritual.
Ideally, we’d recommend noting down a new process or changing to a process as soon as you do it.
It could be tricky at first to establish this habit, but once you do, it will become part of your everyday workflow.
Carve out time.
In a perfect world, each member of your team would be fantastic at IT documentation.
But, we know that things crop up, workloads are heavy and documentation might slip to the back of your mind.
Set aside time once a month, or once every quarter, to check up on how you’re doing, plug any gaps and evaluate how you could improve.
As with anything new in your schedule, if you don’t allocate a fixed time to accomplish a task, it just won’t get done.
Design a process.
It’s a lot easier to complete a task if you know exactly what you’re doing.
That sounds obvious, now you think about it, right?
Make sure your team knows exactly what needs to be documented and when. Arriving at a task when you don’t know exactly what to do only wastes time. Moreover, it can also make the job seem impossible.
We’d recommend drawing up a checklist of things you need to document, so you can get cracking straight away. You should also do this for your monthly or quarterly audit.
In the meantime, establishing a clear vision of why you’re creating IT documentation motivates and encourages the rest of your team to get on board.
Automate where possible.
All sorts of tedious tasks are made easier when automation is involved.
Luckily, there are applications out there, such as IT Glue’s MyGlue, which have integrations that monitor your processes automatically.
Of course, this saves you time, energy and will further help you master the IT documentation process.
Designate a person responsible.
Choose a member of your team to keep check of your business’ IT documentation. The best candidate is someone who recognises the real value of documentation. This is because they’ll be able to pass their enthusiasm on to others in the office. Meanwhile, holding someone accountable for something can work wonders for staying on track and getting things done.
Alternatively, ask your IT director or Managed Services Provider to lead the way. A good MSP should already have a documentation process in place and will be able to guide you in the right direction when it comes to maintaining your records.
Gaps and holes in IT documentation are frustrating and can defeat the object of creating it in the first place.
By sticking to tips one and two your team will be able to craft quality, consistent documentation that will truly add value to your business.
Once it becomes part of your workflow, maintaining a high standard of documentation will become easier
Want to talk more about IT documentation? Speak with a member of our team today.