Safety Gets a Boost with ABS Guidance for Developing Processes, Procedures

(Athens, Greece) ABS, a leading provider of classification and technical services to the global marine and offshore industries, has published the ABS Guidance Notes on the Development of Procedures and Technical Manuals, providing clients with best practice methodologies for developing instructional materials.

“Input from ABS clients and maritime industry groups along with data gathered through the ABS Mariner Safety Research Initiative (MSRI) led to the recognition that this type of guidance was needed,” says Vassilios Kroustallis, ABS Senior Vice President, Eastern Europe. “Data from the MSRI found that more than 3,500 near misses and 200 reported injuries were related to procedures that were absent, misleading, confusing, wrong, or incomplete. We realize the implications to our clients and have stepped forward to offer a solution that is the first of its kind.”

Appropriately written and implemented instructional materials can reduce the cognitive effort and the memory element of performing a task, which helps to reduce human errors. The new Guidance Notes explain the process of developing documents as well as the benefits derived from appropriate document design, development, implementation and life-cycle tracking. The Guidance Notes includes a general discussion of instructional aids, guidance for writing instructional material, guidelines for verifying, validating, approving and certifying the documents, and how to manage change related to updates or the introduction of new procedures. Tools such as a sample constrained language list and analysis techniques for verifying and validating instructional material are included.

“This new ABS publication is expected to be an important reference and useful tool for shipping companies, shipyards and marine organizations; assisting them in in-depth understanding of important terms and definitions and in preparing methodical and accurate procedures and technical manuals,” says Dynacom’s New Building Program Manager, Manos Migadis.  “This kind of guidance was missing from the industry, and we wish to congratulate ABS for developing it.”

The ABS Guidance Notes on the Development of Procedures and Technical Manuals is available for free download at

About ABS

Founded in 1862, ABS is a leading international classification organization devoted to promoting the security of life and property and preserving the natural environment through the development and verification of standards for the design, construction and operational maintenance of marine and offshore assets.