How to Create Your Food Safety Certification Project Plan

Having a detailed project plan in place at the beginning of your SQF/FSSC 22000 or ISO 22000 project will help you meet your goals efficiently and keep the project on track for a successful completion.

A good project plan will include

  • Your overall goal
  • tasks to be completed
  • responsibilities
  • timeline
  • training plan

We recommend using the results of your Gap Analysis to prepare your plan. Let’s look at each section in more detail…

Tasks to be Completed

Every company is at a different stage in their food safety management. Your task list will be unique, and depend on what your current practices are. Develop a task list for each required process by doing a gap analysis. (more detail below)


A good way to organize and assign responsibilities is by process. Assign a small team to work on each process. The team will be responsible for making any changes to bring the process into compliance, based on the gap analysis and task list. Once completed, they will develop the procedure and any other required documentation. 


Once you have the task lists developed, and the teams identified layout the timeline. Not all the teams have to start at one time; some key people may be on multiple teams. Determine how long a each team will have to work depending on the task list. Spread the teams out over the time line. See more detail and examples in our Free SQF or FSSC 22000 Quick Start Guide.  There is also a detailed project plan template included in our Templates Packages.

Training Requirements & Plan

What knowledge do those involved in the project need? Identify what training people need to accomplish their assigned tasks.

Project Manager/SQF Practitioner

SQF / FSSC 22000 / ISO 22000 Complete Training Package. Equip your leader with the knowledge and tools they need to lead a successful project. Includes training on the requirements, implementation guidance, templates and checklists.

HACCP/Food Safety Team

Introduction to SQF / Introduction to FSSC 22000 / Introduction to ISO 22000


SQF Food Safety Fundamentals / FSSC 22000 Prerequisite Programs / ISO 22000 Prerequisite Programs

Internal Audit Team

SQF / FSSC 22000 / ISO 22000 Internal Auditor Training


GMP Training

How can I use the information from the Gap Analysis for my project plan?

Free Gap Analysis Online Tutorial

Evaluate the information from the Gap Analysis. For each process, determine whether:

  • The process is documented and meets the requirements
  • The process is documented but needs modifications to become compliant with the standard requirements
  • The process meets requirements but must be documented 
  • The process does not meet requirements and must be documented
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