There are different terms that are used in business and many people confuse them. Two of these terms are process and procedure. Even though they sound pretty much the same, they are a little different. The Difference between Process and Procedure is that process is a set of activities to perform a task while procedure refers to the actual way in which the task is done.
Basically, if we talk in simple terms, a process refers to what has to be done and procedure refers to how something is done. This Difference between Process and Procedure was given in ISO 9000, 2005 edition.
Process: Definition and Use.
In any process, there are three major elements called input, process and an output. The process gives output from the input of any task. Process refers to the flow of activities or sequence of work that gives output from the input. It involves all the things that have to be done.
Along with that, it also involves who has to do that work and where that work takes place and when it happens. The orchestration of any work falls under process.
A process can respond to 1 or more procedures. It may respond to no procedures. It encapsulates activities and provides a workflow model to be followed in a business setting. An example of the process is a burger joint.
The process includes taking the order from the customer and the staff that starting the processing of this order. In the process, they prepare the burgers, serve them on a dish or in a takeaway bad and then give it to the customer.
Procedure: Definition and Use.
While the process is the set of activities that need to be done, procedure refers to how these activities have to be done. Furthermore, it also encapsulates why those activities have to be done a certain way. It is a mandatory method and a procedure may have 1 or more than one work instructions.
Even though the procedure covers how something is to be done, it does not go in all the detail. This detail is provided by work instruction which covers the steps that need to be taken to accomplish a task.
A procedure is documented using flow charts, images, and narration. It is needed for the effective operation of any process and proper planning in a business setting.
Proper procedures have to be made in order to ensure that the Quality Management System in business is running according to regulations. In the burger joint examples, there can be many procedures such as preparing the burger, wrapping it, taking the order and managing the payment.
Summary of Difference Between Process and Procedure:
- The Difference between Process and Procedure is that process is a set of activities that have to be done in any tasks while procedure refers to how these activities are done.
- In a process, there can be many procedures.
- Another Difference between Process and Procedure is that a process consists of three elements while a procedure covers who is going to do the task and how.