Often when I am going through the introduction to my courses, I tell my delegates what products I train and regularly get asked what Visio is. It is not part of the standard office suite so it had to be specially bought and installed so it is not often provided for staff unless they have a business need for it. However, if you don’t know what it does how do you know whether it may be useful or not?
What is Visio used for?
Visio is used to create diagrams that can then be imported into other packages if required. The standard office products of Excel, Word and PowerPoint have had the decent diagram creation option of SmartArt graphics since 2007. It is great for the basics but has its limitations which is where Visio comes in. There are more diagram types and each diagram is more flexible and there are specific Visio options that make them easier to create and modify than using SmartArt
What Types of Diagram can be created?
There are many diagram types that can be created but here is a list of 5 of the most common ones
- Flow chart
- Cross Functional Flow Chart
- Work Flow Diagram
- Organisation Chart
- Office Layout
Flow charts are used to show the flow of a process and have different shaped boxes to represent different parts of it. The most common ones are lozenge shapes for the start and end, rectangles for the main steps and diamond shapes for decisions
Cross Functional Flow Chart
Cross Functional Flow Charts are similar to the standard flow charts but can be subdivided into sections like departments and phases of a process
Work Flow Diagram
A Work Flow Diagram is similar to a flow chart because it shows the flow of a process. However, rather than using shapes to represent
Organisation Charts show the hierarchical structure, often in an organisation, hence the name
Office Layout produces a diagram to show not only where the walls, doors and windows are in an office but also the furniture placement too. It is shown as a bird’s eye view.
There are plenty of other layouts available ranging from diagrams to assist when dealing with project planning, electrical circuits, home plans, brainstorming, calendars and many more.