These days, my shop consists of one person, me, and since I do all the design work as well, passing along details on construction and finish is not an issue. Not that this means I don't still screw things up, far from it, but thinking on this reminds me of my days working in shops as an employee.
One of the real issues encountered all the time in just about every shop was getting ALL of the info needed for the job from those who created the idea, to those who ultimately had to build it (An old boss of mine referred to this as a "Cranial Download"). This is no easy task, and I think very few companies have found a great solution. Sure, prints and drawings can show dimensions, shapes, hole locations and such, but what about all the rest? There are a myriad of details that may have been thought of during the design and drafting that rarely make it out to the shop floor, and this is especially true of sanding and finishing details.
I have seen cut lists that reference edge banding; "EB 2s 1L" means that both short edges and one long edge of a part gets banded. But do you also pass along such info for sanding? Or how you envisioned the sanding and surface prep being done? Does your bench person know that the piece being made is supposed to be "rustic" and exactly what that means in your mind?
Most companies do have standards for what grit to sand a part to for paint grade or staining, and that is helpful, but often for custom work, the shop floor needs more info. Did you envision edges being rounded by a belt sander to look more handmade? Will the part be "distressed" after finishing by block sanding at corners? If you do not pass that info along, there is no reason for the shop person not to use a router and bit.
Passing details along with the job as it flows through your plant is a challenge. Share your solutions with us, we would love to hear the creative ways you have solved this issue. You can comment here on the blog, on our Facebook Page, or via Twitter -2Sand.com