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Automating Standard Operating Procedures

A Standard Operating Procedure is typically instituted within a business to help ensure that efficient, consistent actions are carried out, and it is also used as a tool to assist in the training of new people executing any particular function or task. With compliance, Standard Operating Procedures are added or adjusted to meet the requirement. For example, a pharmaceutical manufacturer that has a clean room manufacturing environment must create Standard Operating Procedures for the actions a person takes when entering the clean room environment. This may include a shoe cleaning station and the usage of shoe covers. Making a step-by-step Standard Operating Procedure clearly accessible and readable at the clean room entrance could be only one of many methods companies can use to meet the compliance requirement of assuring product sterility.

Automating the processes associated with standard operating procedures, such as recording tasks and adjusting requirements, helps organizations free up people so they can focus on the activities that add value to their business. Microsoft Dynamics AX helps organizations enforce Standard Operating Procedures by automating the process of creating and sharing business process documentation and standard operating procedure documents.

Perform More Processes Faster Automated workflows are crucial for enforcing compliance. Manual processes slow productivity. Microsoft Dynamics AX helps organizations to perform more processes faster and more consistently. For example, it’s possible to create individual workflows or business processes to automate compliance with corporate policies and procedures. Microsoft Dynamics AX workflows enable you to configure workflow approval processes based on pre-defined templates to fit your business needs. It’s possible to track the status and history of a specific workflow instance to analyze and determine if changes need to be made to the workflow to improve efficiency. And, with Microsoft Dynamics AX, Web services can be used to check and ensure compliance with regulations such as trade restrictions automatically at the sales order entry level.

Better Internal Controls with Approval Workflows for Financial Journals Standard Operating Procedures also include enforcing internal controls for specific, pre-defined actions and processes. This can be especially relevant in financial processes. For example, Microsoft Dynamics AX enables the setup of approval processes on selected financial journals on a per journal name basis. The approval process allows the user to define the conditions under which approvals are required and to specify the approver(s). The workflow infrastructure updates the workflow status of the journal as needed to provide visibility as to whether the workflow status is pending approval, approved, rejected, etc. And, the workflow status controls the actions that may occur during workflow execution, such as not allowing posting or generating payments until the approval workflow is completed.

Document and Record Tasks and Activities Automatically Accurate documentation of tasks and activities and making this information easily accessible are crucial components to enforcing standard operating procedures successfully. Microsoft Dynamics AX delivers the capability of logging and recording tasks and activities and making the information available from the Compliance Center, in Microsoft Office documents and in Microsoft SharePoint sites. For example, it’s possible to create documentation for processes or training-oriented documentation using the integrated Task Recorder in Microsoft Dynamics AX. Based on the recorded tasks and user activity in the application, documents can be generated that include step-by-step instructions and illustrations in a number of Microsoft Office document formats, such as Microsoft Office Word, Microsoft Office PowerPoint® presentations and process-oriented documentation in Microsoft Office Visio ® . Additional information and steps can be added, including company or organization policies and procedures. The document can then be stored, accessed, and controlled from the Compliance Center Document Library. This is a SharePoint document library, so you can control access to this document library, if necessary.

Improve Employee Compliance Awareness and Training Publishing compliance practices and standard operating procedures and making them available within the organization is an important part of managing compliance; however; employee training in compliance practices and company policy is also key. Management can help improve compliance awareness throughout the organization and train employees in corporate policies by using Questionnaire in Microsoft Dynamics AX. You can design and execute compliance-related questionnaires and mandatory online training to ensure that employees are up-to-date on new corporate compliance policies and procedures and enforce training in areas where improvements are needed.

Learn more about Microsoft Dynamics AX Compliance Management which enables companies to enforce compliance in a consistent and cost effective manner, while streamlining business processes and improving efficiency across the organization.

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