- First, it establishes and reinforces the relationship between the commanding officer and his or her watch standers.
- Second, it serves the function of making tacit, experiential knowledge explicit.
- Third, Standing Orders issue the commanding officers watch standing philosophy.
- Fourth, Standing Orders facilitate watch stander action.
Understanding these four Standing Order purposes leads to a deeper and more meaningful understanding of the document’s importance. Deeper knowledge of communicative purpose allows both writers and users to examine effectiveness. In other words, understanding the nature of the role Standing Orders play aboard ships is the first step in determining the effectiveness of these orders in playing that role.