Create Cannabis Standard Operating Procedures with These Actionable Tips

Cannabis Standard Operating Procedures EcoWaste Services

If you haven’t created clear and actionable cannabis standard operating procedures for your business, the idea might seem overwhelming. We’ve created this article to discuss some actionable tips you can use to form an SOP strategy that focuses on your long-term success.

Succeeding with Cannabis Standard Operating Procedures

Without standard operating procedures for a cannabis business, it’s easy for a dispensary to lose sight of which day-to-day operations contribute to smooth management. This in mind, it’s possible to create and implement cannabis SOP’s that’ll make processes repeatable and quality consistent.

Here are several actionable tips you can use to create your cannabis standard operating procedures:

Use a Dispensary SOP Template or Professional Assistance

No one is born knowing how to create cannabis SOP’s. So if this is your first time, you could try using a dispensary SOP template like this one from Adilas420 to create your own. Adilas420 offers a dispensary standard operating procedures template that includes over 75 pages of content you can use to create SOP’s for any regulated cannabis business.

Upon purchasing a template, you can customize it to handle your cannabis business’s operations. You can also use these SOP’s to support your business application or as a resource for your employees.

Even though purchasing a dispensary SOP template isn’t cheap, it’s usually one of the most affordable options, especially if you’ve never created one before. For those of you just starting out, consider how much it costs to start a cannabis business before purchasing a template.

Sometimes, buying a template isn’t an option. If you’re looking for a more affordable option, you can always try finding and editing a cultivation standard operating procedures PDF for free online.

Another option is to cover the basics on your own. Then, find a professional to check it over and make any necessary edits. Don’t be afraid to ask for assistance!

Essential Processes to Define in Your Dispensary Policies and Procedures

If you decide to create your own dispensary policies and procedures, you’ll need well-defined SOP’s for several common cannabis industry processes, including:


Your inventory SOP’s will ensure any time someone orders a product, it’s in stock. This is the back-office process that keeps your products stocked and ready to purchase. Whether you’re selling Sour Diesel flower, CBD extract, or something else, monitoring inventory levels and the speed your products are being purchased and replaced will keep your business running as smoothly as possible. Inventory SOP’s also help with purchasing, auditing, and restocking, facilitating crucial management decisions as a result.


If you own a dispensary, you might order loose flower to repackage into smaller packages and joints. However, you might have some other manufacturing processes you need to organize within your SOP’s. For instance, you might make infused treats for distribution.

Standardize any of your manufacturing processes to keep errors minimal and track everything in accordance with regulations in your state. Just be sure to keep these SOP’s as simple as possible to avoid overcomplicating your procedures.

Accounting & Overhead

Every business requires adequate record keeping. As you’re creating your SOP’s for accounting, make sure to include how you’ll file taxes, check revenue to ensure you’re making informed decisions, and oversee cash or inventory theft.

For accounting and finance, it’s also important to collect the right amount of taxes. Monitor the taxes you collect and maintain accurate records showing how much money you’ve made after making adjustments for your taxes.

Define Specific Roles in Your Cannabis SOP’s

Your SOP’s should specifically define roles and the responsibilities of each. For example, if you have an inventory manager, you should have a clear set of procedures for them to follow as they’re receiving orders.

You might have a dispensary employee, as well. This role would likely be defined in your dispensary operations manual.

Dispensary staff generally follows this process:

  1. Find the open purchase order.
  2. Assign the purchase order to the product.
  3. Input the product cost into the system.

It’s this employee’s responsibility to ensure that the purchase order matches what your dispensary delivered and track the physical inventory within your system. You’ll document this in your cannabis inventory procedures to require employees to successfully follow and repeat this task the same way every time.

Every role at every level can and should have a specific SOP set. However, sometimes, one person can handle the tasks of several roles.

Small dispensaries sometimes will have the owner handling budtending and inventory management. Perhaps the owner handles the purchasing and accounting, as well.

While this works for smaller cannabis businesses, these roles should become specialized as your company begins to scale. For example, if your company is doing $4 million a month in sales, account, purchasing, budtending, and inventory management are likely full-time jobs.

Rather than having one person conducting the receiving, restocking, purchasing, and auditing, you can hire someone to work full-time covering each job. This ensures that nothing is overlooked as you adhere to seed-to-sale tracking requirements.

After You Create Your SOP’s, Evaluate It

Regardless of how much experience you have creating cannabis standard operating procedures, it’s always ideal to check it over after. Evaluate each process to ensure that it adequately handles each task in an easily repeatable way.

For instance, if you’re evaluating your receiving procedure, you’ll have to confirm that it guides your team to count products accurately, label them correctly, and stock the products to make auditing as straightforward as possible.

Consider how long each task should take. Then, think about whether the quality metrics are too high. But most importantly, you’ll need to ensure it achieves your business’s objectives.

The main idea here is to make these procedures as easy to follow as possible. Your tasks should be fast, consistent, and completed with quality in mind. Don’t overcomplicate your SOPs as this will make it more challenging to train your team.

Keep in mind, your SOP’s should not leave too many decisions up to your team members. If you allow more choices, you’ll find your day-to-day operations will be less consistent.

If you have any questions about maintaining cannabis compliance, creating a cannabis standard operating procedure, or cannabis waste disposal, feel free to reach out to us at EcoWaste Services at any time.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *