Documentation is essential as you work throughout a scholarly review. The process can take months if not years, so documentation makes the creation of a manuscript or presentation much easier, particularly when describing your methodology.
Templates and Checklists
Regardless of whether you're using PRISMA, JBI, or Cochrane, each organization has a variety of templates and checklists to guide your process. Use these to help document each step of your review, creating your final product as you go. This is particularly true for your search strategies.
Official Search Strategy
PRISMA has a checklist just for reporting your search strategy for your systematic or scoping review. This can help guide your process as well as your documentation.
Includes 16 reporting items for a detailed search strategy.
One requirement of a systematic review or a scoping review is that they be replicable. Because of this, it is required that you record your search. This record does not have to be included in the appendices of your review, but you do need to have if asked for.
The easiest way to accomplish this is via an excel or google worksheet. See example below:
This differs from an official search strategy in that an official search strategy is a far more detailed account of how a search was formulated and ran across an individual database.