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10 Steps to creating effective digital checklists 

2 minutes, 7 seconds read

Standardize and support your ongoing operational processes.

What is a Digital Checklist?

Digital Checklists document a process that can be made available to anyone, anywhere to standardize the execution and data capture of that process leveraging an electronic device. 

A great checklist goes beyond just documenting a process. It enables employees to learn new skills quickly and perform their jobs better

Why a Digital Checklist?

  • Productivity – time, clarity, mobile-friendly 
  • Accuracy and Control – human error, simplify, consistency
  • Accountability – audit trail, follow-up, recognizing
  • Data Insights – capture, analysis, visibility 
  • Cost Control – printing, paper, storage, disposal, environment  

10 Steps to Building an Effective Digital Checklist

1. Have a clear objective

  • Communicate why this process is being performed.
  • Define the goal this process serves.
  • Identify the individuals performing the process.

2. What data do you need

  • Define the exact data that needs to be captured.
  • Understand the data analysis that needs to be done based on the process.
  • Define the data, and the input values, that will trigger follow-up actions.

3. Know your audience

  • Time available and environment in which they will complete the checklist.
  • Appropriate language, such as technical terms, appropriate for the audience.
  • Comfort level of your audience in interacting with technology.

4. Keep it simple 

  • Avoid walls of text. Keep it short.
  • Make sure every step has a purpose.
  • Use the appropriate language.

5. Be specific

  • Leave no room for interpretation.
  • Cover the details.  
  • Emphasize the most critical parts.

6. Use appropriate answer types

  • Make it easy to provide the answer, observation, or mark completion.
  • Provide a limited selection of answers, or a number, if data analysis will be required.
  • Use free text only when data analysis will not be needed.

7. Use photos intelligently

  • Remember a picture is worth a thousand words.
  • Only add photos when they add value. Not for decoration.
  • Keep pictures simple. Add additional pictures rather than one complicated picture.

8. Make it easy to navigate

  • Follow a predictable order.
  • Allow for visibility into past and future steps.
  • Let users save their work and continue at a later time.

9. Test it before launching

  • Have the checklist tested by representatives from your target audience.
  • Simulate real-life conditions as best as possible.
  • Follow a consistent ‘go-live’ process.

10. Update regularly

  • Allow for an easy way for users to provide feedback.
  • Validate feedback with other users.
  • Incorporate feedback regularly.


Video: 10 Steps to creating effective digital checklists 

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