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Policy Development Process with Best Practices and Tools

This section contains resources and tools to assist in the development and review of policies and procedures. Individuals are encouraged to review the materials found on this site prior to drafting or proposing policies.

Please use the Stages (1-7) and Best Practices below to help guide the process. Please contact the Corporate Secretary or Responsible Authority listed in the policy with any questions or comments.

The Updated Document Central is the location to upload documents, resource for templates and approval flows.

Tip: Comprehensive Policy Review Questions Tip Sheet

Predevelopment Stage 1 ~ Identify & Conduct Analysis-Approval to Proceed

  • Identify owners and key stakeholders, Implementation Lead (IF other than the Responsible Officer), Policy Writer, Policy Project Team and draft consultation strategy
  • Consult Policy Manager, Delegations of Authority Chart,
  • Locate existing NOSM (associated) documents that will be impacted or that could be amended to address policy gap or changes
  • Identify any legislative or regulatory requirements
  • Research reasons for policy gap and identify good practice responses
  • Excellent resource: COU Quality Assurance Framework Guide Quality assurance of university academic programs has been adopted around the world and is widely
    recognized as a vital component of every viable educational system.
  • Key Document to assist: Initiate the Briefing Template and Approval to Proceed from the Responsible Office and Final Approval Authority, if required. Templates can be found here: Document Templates and other Resources

More information . . .  Stage 1 Predevelopment  and Stage 1 Approval Authorities

Development: Stage 2 Writing and Drafting

  • Prior to Implementation establish a Team:  include Implementation Lead and if needed a Policy Writer,
  • Outline your Intent: Project Plan and Time frame [outlined in the briefing template]
  • Write the document using templates/work from previous document if required
  • Draft the Implementation and Communication Plan (refer Stage 6)
  • Consider how to evaluate the effectiveness of the policy eg. how will “success” or compliance be measured? (refer Stage 7)

Excellent resources:

COU Quality Assurance Framework Guide Quality assurance of university academic programs has been adopted around the world and is widely
recognized as a vital component of every viable educational system.

Good policy advice/writing: (The Worth of a Garden”, Performance Measurement and Policy Advice in the Public Service (A Discussion Paper)opens in new window Mark. Schacter, 2006)

  • is timely – it is ready when decision-makers need it;
  • has been prepared based on adequate consultation with stakeholders inside and outside the school or program;
  • clearly articulates the purpose for which it has been prepared;
  • has a sound logical basis – there is a clear description of the facts and assumptions upon which the advice is based, and a clear articulation of the links between fact and assumptions on the one hand, and conclusions and recommendations on the other;
  • has a sound evidentiary basis – the underlying evidence is accurate and complete;
  • is balanced – it presents a representative range of viewpoints;
  • presents an adequate range of viable options for action;
  • is relevant to the current situation faced by decision-makers – it takes into account current realities (including political realities) and anticipates related developments;
  • is well presented to the reader – the prose is concise; the text is well organized;
  • is pragmatic – it bears in mind implementation issues.

More information . . . Stage 2 Drafting Policy Documents Guide and Stage 2 Writing Policy Documents Guide

Development: Stage 3 Consultation

Consult stakeholders on draft document to assist with:

        • principles, responsibilities, actions
        • impact on systems
        • risk and compliance/alignment with legislature
        • alignment with other documents and processes
        • equity, diversity and inclusion lens
        • implementation plans

More information . . . Stage 3 Consultation and  Sample Stage 3 Template Open for Consultation Notice

Development: Stage 4 Document Approval

  • Draft reviewed by Policy Manager for compliance with Policy Framework and any changes/recommendations reconfirmed by Responsible Officer/Approval Authorities
  • Briefing Note and draft document(s) sent to relevant Approval Authority for approval
  • Remember: Take into consideration timelines and approval cycles!

More information . . . Stage 4 Document Approval

Development: Stage 5 Publication

        • A document published on Document Central or Central Repository ~ contact Policy Manager for details
        • Policy Manager or Unit announces new/ amended policy through various communications mechanisms eg. NOSM Pulse, other Unit/Division publications
        • Policy Manager reports to the Board, Council, Executive Group, Management Steering Group and Management Group on new and substantially revised policy documents

More information . . . Stage 5 Publication Posting

Maintenance: Stage 6 Implementation and Communication

      • Who is responsible for implementing?
      • Have plans been made on how the policy will be communicated to the NOSM community and any applicable external organization?
      • Has NOSM’s Communications or Technology Unit been included in the planning?
      • Responsible Officer enacts Implementation and Communication Plan
      • Has the document been uploaded to the Central Repository and annotated on the Policy and Procedures site [See Policy Manager]
      • Establishes ‘Issues Log’ to inform possible future changes

More information . . . Stage 6 Implementation and Communication and Sample Stage 6 Communication Plan Template

Maintenance: Stage 7 Maintenance – Evaluation and Review Guide

  • Enact the Evaluation and Review Strategy
  • Review the document prior to the set review date Return to Stage 1: Predevelopment & Approval to Proceed

More information . . . Stage 7 Maintenance – Evaluation and Review

*diagram adapted from UMN