Standard operating procedure
|Standard operating procedure|
Standard operating procedure (SOP) is the normal procedure followed in any particular eventuality.
SOP is a default procedure which can be either followed, e.g. if standard conditions apply, or deviated from if particular circumstances would seem to justify something unusal.
Deviations from standard operating procedure may be helpful in special (i.e. non-standard) circumstances. When SOP is violated in apparently non-exceptional cases, this provides an indication that other (i.e. covert) forces may be at play.
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