Lessons Learned Handbook:
Potential sources should be identified and periodically screened to highlight
experiences and conditions for which lessons learned documentation should be
prepared. It may be useful to perform lessons learned inquiries at specific steps
or stages in processes or operations. For example, the following stages may
provide applicable lessons learned:
Completion of audits, surveillance, reviews, and evaluations by internal, external
or independent organizations.
Completion of relevant project milestones.
Development or implementation of an idea or method to correct, modify, or
otherwise improve current operating or programmatic processes.
Any recordable in-house event.
Receipt of articles or reports, such as publications and trade magazines, having
potential applicability to departmental activities.
In some cases, it may be useful to provide a written or verbal summary of the
identified lessons learned to your organization's Lessons Learned Coordinator prior to
preparing the lessons learned document. This step is useful to ensure that the
experience qualifies as a lessons learned. To assist with the process of identifying
lessons learned, the following questions may be helpful:
What was the event?
What was the action(s) taken to stabilize the event?
What was the approximate cost to correct the concern?
Was this the proper action(s)?
Was this action the final corrective action(s) or should other action(s) have been
Is the event applicable to the Area, Department, Division, Site or other DOE
Was the event safety, regulatory, design, programmatic, documentation, or other
If the event was safety-related, did it involve an employee, the environment, or
If the event was regulatory-related, did it concern RCRA or CERCLA?
Did the event result in a cost, schedule, or technical impact?