Do you find flowcharts to be an effective way of communicating your business process? If so, then flowchart software is the perfect tool for creating flowcharts that are easy to read and understand. A flowchart can quickly show all the steps in a process, making it easier for people on your team to see what they need to do next.
Here is Venngage’s take on ten tips for creating an effective flowchart:
- Start by writing a brief flowchart of your process. Draw it out on paper or make the flowchart directly in Venngage using our “Draw” tool. You can add detailed information to each step as you develop them and edit any actions that need to be changed later once everyone has been consulted about the project.
- Use keywords/phrases instead of sentences whenever possible for clarity and simplicity. Whenever possible, use symbols rather than complete sentences because this will keep your flow chart template concise and easy-to-understand when they’re used outside your company’s walls.
- Fully explain all symbols, so people know what they stand for without referencing materials from other sources. If someone needs to reference your flowchart outside of the company, they must understand all symbols. Another way to make flow chart examples effective is by including a legend explaining each symbol and its relation to another symbol.
- Use shapes instead of words whenever possible. Shapes are more accessible for people to identify than words because we see them every day in our daily lives (i.e., cloud-shaped balloons or stop signs). However, you should use these shapes sparingly, so flowcharts don’t look too cluttered with different types of symbols when there’s overlap between two or more ideas.
- Use color effectively to highlight certain parts of the process flow chart without being distracting. It will help readers quickly find important details within your flowchart creator. For example, you could use red to show warning signs or green for success factors.
- Create flowcharts in a flow chart maker that are sized correctly. Flowcharts should be large enough to fit on a single page easily but not too big that it requires scrolling through each step before getting to the end of the flowchart. If your flowchart is too small, people will have trouble reading the details between efforts and symbols because everything may run together.
On the other hand, if your flow chart is too large, readers will lose their place within it or feel overwhelmed by how much there is still left to read/watch when scrolling down into its contents. It means the ideal size for most flow charts falls somewhere around 22 x 28 inches.
- Create flowcharts that are easy to read and understand. It means flow charts should be legible from a distance without the need for someone to lean over or get very close to see what’s happening within it. The easiest way of ensuring flowchart legibility is by using sans serif fonts, such as Verdana, Tahoma, Calibri & Arial. They have concave shapes with larger letterforms-which makes them easier on the eyes when reading long passages of text (i.e., words).
Another method of making sure your flow chart is readable includes highlighting necessary information/steps so readers can easily find what they’re looking for instead of having to sift through every detail listed therein. Analyze different flowcharts and flowchart styles for your company.
Depending on the type of business you’re in, flow charts may vary significantly from one industry to another or even between different teams within a single organization working towards similar goals but with changing processes. For this reason, flow chart style must match how people work around you since they will need to be referencing them often-so choose an option that is most relevant for everyone involved.
- Use flowcharts as a learning tool. Flowcharts can be especially helpful to new employees because they walk them through different business processes step-by-step. Every team should analyze flowcharts together at least once or twice a year.
It ensures that everyone understands what’s going on within the flowchart and how it works. Also, this action will help reduce confusion when people are referencing flow charts for answers instead of having someone around who already knows about them. Designing effective flow charts is no easy task, but with practice, you’ll become more familiar with their purpose and understand which methods work best depending on your company’s needs.
Many different flow chart styles and methods for designing flowcharts will help you convey your business processes. It’s important to use color effectively, size correctly and choose flowchart style based on how people work around you to create flow charts with the most impact.
By following these tips when creating flow diagrams, you will quickly present your business process effectively that others can understand without asking too many questions about what’s going on within it. Start creating with Venngage now!