I was auditing a company recently when I noticed some duplication in their environmental management system documentation. All of the procedures were presented as a flow chart, then repeated in words. This means that they will appeal to people who are visual as well as those that prefer words, which could be a good thing. I didn’t notice any errors in this case, but it reminded me of how duplications mean that you run the risk of one element being updated and the other no longer matching.
I saw this the other day in some operating procedures covering temperature. The correct temperature settings were stated differently in different parts of the procedure. Not only could this lead to confusion, but also to wasted energy.
Are there any duplications in your environmental management system? If so, are they managed closely to ensure that any changes are made in both places?