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Basic flowcharting

These are the basics of flowcharting.

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For more information, on why you’d want to flowchart and what it will do for you, read the 7 reasons to document what you do, and the Quick and Easy Guide to Documenting what you do

There are two types of symbols

  • a square/rectangle (for an action)
  • a diamond (for a decision)

Arrows join the symbols together

  • squares may have only one arrow coming out of them
  • diamonds always have exactly two arrows coming out of them –
    a “yes” and a “no”
  • there can be as many arrows coming into a symbol as necessary

The flowchart can go across or down the page

Some practical tips

  • using post-it notes makes it easier to relocate symbols as you develop the flowchart
  • once you are sure of how the flowchart goes, there are software packages available to chart them. Try ABC Flowcharter, Visio or PowerPoint.

Flowcharts are also called

  • process maps
  • work flow diagrams
  • process charts
  • process flows
  • work flows

Read some more articles.

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