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Lessons Learned Handbook:
DOE-HDBK-7502-95
Determining What is Not a Lessons Learned
The decision to communicate an experience as a lessons learned should be based on
whether or not the information has importance to others. Sometimes this importance
is obvious, such as information that can reduce costs or risks. At other times, it may
be difficult to determine the value to others. It is always important to keep in mind
that over-reporting leads to an overburdened lessons learned system that contains
information that may not be meaningful. However, under reporting leads to the loss
of valuable information.
Although it is generally better to over-report than to under-report, there are several
categories of information that should never become lessons learned. These
categories include: information that is common knowledge (already known by the
general population); information tied to experiences that are extremely low risk; and
information tied to one-time experiences (process, operations, etc. that will never be
repeated). For further discussion regarding what is not a lesson learned, see the Air
Force Lessons Learned Validator's Guide in Volume II, Appendix V. Although DOE
criteria will likely differ from Air Force criteria, the discussion may be useful in
developing guidelines for your site or facility.
Preparing a Lessons Learned Document
DOE organizations may use the template included in the Lessons Learned Technical
Standard as the basis for preparing lessons learned documents or may develop their
own template for internal use. However, all documents that are disseminated DOE-
wide through the Lessons Learned Information Services must be in the template
format provided in the DOE Technical Standard. This requirement is to ensure that all
lessons learned shared complex-wide are consistent, easy to access, and understood
by all DOE organizations. The DOE-wide lessons learned template requires the
following information:
Title
Identifier
Date
Originator
Contact
Name of Authorized Derivative Classifier
Name of Reviewing Official
Priority Descriptor
Functional Category(s)
Keyword(s)
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