Diagrams or charts play a vital role in every organization. Whether it is used as organizational charts or used to illustrate presentations, it has the same purpose. It is to show the flow or process. However, there are things that you must learn when it comes to flow charts. Our downloadable flow chart templates can help you. It is easy to edit and customize based on your needs and requirements. Read this article to discover more about this article.
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What Is a Flow Chart?
A flow chart is a graph that illustrates the flow of steps. It presents steps in succeeding order and is used to show workflow, the flow of algorithms, and other processes. Usually, a flow chart shows the steps as boxes containing different kinds in sequence and connecting them with arrows. In other words, flow charts are diagrams that show how the process steps fit together. According to Mind Tools, American engineer Frank Gilbreth is the first individual to document the process flow and introduced the Process Chart to the American Society of Mechanical Engineers in 1921.
How to Create a Basic Flow Chart?
Although flow charts seem to be easy to craft and create, there are things that you need to consider to make them presentable and credible. Flow charts are diagrams or graphs that show the flow of the process. However, it will fail to present the flow, mainly if the essential details are not present. Making and planning a flow chart can be tricky and time-consuming at times. Here are some tips that can make it simpler to draft and create a basic flow chart:
1. Know Your Purpose and Scope
The first thing that you must do is to know what is your purpose and scope. Asked yourself questions like What do you want to accomplish? Are you studying the right things to achieve that purpose of yours? Identifying or knowing your purpose and scope can help you in planning and creating organizational charts and diagrams. Make sure to include all the details that you research. However, use the simpler version of the factors and information to communicate with your expected audience.
2. Identify the Steps in Succeeding Order
The next thing that you have to do is to identify the steps in chronological order. Since flow charts are meant to present data in order, it is necessary to identify all the steps to show a clear picture of its flow. Identifying steps of the process might involve talking to members, following a process, and reviewing existing documentation. You could write the steps in a note, or you could start a rough chart.
3. Classify Each of Them By Types and Shapes
Once you have identified each step, follow it by classifying each of its types and corresponding shapes. You can organize them by their process, decision, data, inputs, or outputs. It can be a great help to show your audience a definite and precise flow of your presentation. Failure to organize the details can bring confusion and uncertainty to the audience.
4. Draw Your Flow Chart
After planning and generating all the necessary details, you can now draw your chart. Whether you will craft it manually, use a computer, or use a template, it is up to you. However, make sure that it suits and looks presentable. The look of your chart can provide so much impact on your presentation. That is why it is better to make it simple yet full of information.
5. Confirm Your Flow Chart
After setting up everything, the last thing you need to do is to confirm your flow chart. It involves walking through the steps with people who are taking part in the process. Observe the process to ensure you haven’t missed anything relevant to your purpose.
Why use a flow chart?
The reasons for using a flow chart are the following:
- To understand how to complete a process.
- To analyze a development method.
- To communicate how to complete a process with others.
- To enhance better communication between people involved in the same process.
- To document a process.
- When preparing for a project.
What are the advantages of using flow charts?
The advantages of using flow charts or diagrams are:
- Better communication
- Effective analysis
- Reducing time and cost
What are the types of flow charts?
The types of flow charts are:
- Process flow charts
- Data flow charts
- Business process modeling diagram
Whatever the reasons you may have for creating a flow chart, you need to consider several things. These things can help you illustrate an understandable presentation. You can use our downloadable flow chart templates the next time you’ll craft a flow chart. They’re available and easy to use. Download it now!
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