How to Create Flowcharts in Word

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A semblance of order and cohesive actions are central in natural processes. The laws of the physical universe (as perceived by human beings) govern these natural processes. Cause and effect remains the predominant motifs in nature. Similarly, human beings are innately programmed to create and maintain a semblance of order in their immediate environments. Flowcharts represent one of the tools that enable modern man to plan and execute a host of complex processes in the realms of science, commerce, engineering, industry, programming, and entertainment. We can use Microsoft’s word processing package (known as Microsoft Word) to create intelligent and expansive flowcharts. We will examine some of the aspects of such an exercise in the passages below.

Designers can create flowcharts in Word with a view to illustrate the workings of various systems and processes. They can use various shapes such as rectangles, squares, diamonds, and trapeziums to populate said flowcharts. Text inside these shapes can denote the various stages of a process. A designer can create a simple flowchart or architect a complex illustration using flowcharts in Word. Arrows can connect these entities and signify the process flow inside a certain system or process. Microsoft Word enables designers to select various flowchart shapes and edit the formatting. This is useful when constructing complex process flows wherein, one stage may need iterations at different levels.

When creating various flowcharts in Word, designers have the benefit of using a grid to enable perfect placement of various components inside a flowchart. Microsoft offers this benefit because it helps visual alignment and imparts a professional appearance to the final flowchart product. The grid is a useful backdrop because it offers the flowchart designer a certain modicum of control in designing a flowchart. The grid also gains importance because it removes the guesswork when certain segments of a process need to be re-aligned or re-located to a different section of the document. This empowers designers to enforce seamless and unproblematic change management in flowcharts in Word.

Planning a process on a piece of paper is a good first step when designers set out to create flowcharts in Word. This may appear old world but imparts a certain momentum to the thought process inside the human brain. Once a basic outline is ready on a piece of paper, designers can move to the digital medium (Microsoft Word) and commence the creation of flowcharts in Word. The software package offers designers the use of multiple shapes to design the proverbial nuts and bolts of a flowchart. Creators and designers can click on a shape from the tool box, drag it, and position it inside the flowchart. They can re-size any shape keeping in demands with the information that will populate a certain stage in the process. This flexibility enables designers and creators to imbue their digital creations with a certain ‘look’. We note these steps can be repeated an infinite number of times in keeping with the demands of the final document. Designers can also effect process revisions by visually altering the stages and connections inside flowcharts in Word.

Colors play an important role in highlighting the stages of any process depicted in a flowchart. Designers that set out to create flowcharts in Word can embellish their creations with a wide palette of colors available in Microsoft Word. Each stage of the flowchart can be colored with a view to relieve the visual tedium of perusing a black and white creation of modern digital technology. For instance, decision points depicted as diamonds within a flowchart can be colored red in a bid to call attention from observers and reviewers of flowcharts in Word. In a similar vein, a high contrast pairing of yellow shapes and black fonts creates a pleasing visual for the eyes of flowchart designers and reviewers. This color scheme also encourages an easier absorption of the essential facts embedded in a modern flowchart. This promotes better understanding and spotlights any gaps in the flow of a process or system. In light of the above, we state that colored flowcharts represent an emphatic benefit when designers create flowcharts in Word.

The process of creating flowcharts in Word demands constant attention on the part of flowchart designers and creators. These personnel must bear in mind their efforts are geared to create a highly accurate representation of the workings (or stages) of a specific system or process. Hence, they must work to align the diagram to the current page as displayed on the screen. This also calls our attention to the fact that user experience is key in designing flowcharts in Word. The end-user (or reviewer or any member of an online audience) must clearly gain the sense that the screen is depicting a section of a flowchart or perhaps an illustration that contains a process in its entirety. No part of the flowchart must stray outside the designated screen area and the designer remains at liberty to resize any component to achieve this effect. Hence, all shapes and connectors must be in perfect proportion when designers complete the creation of flowcharts in Word.

Microsoft Word offers multiple options and choices to design the shapes and connectors that populate flowcharts in Word. The many ‘shape styles’ offer designers and creators an easy option to add color to shapes. These personnel have the choice to use solid colors of gradients when they wish to add color to a flowchart. However, it is advisable not to use too many colors because such a choice of action can distract from the agenda of creating a visual effect that focuses the attention of viewers and audiences. In line with this, designers can alter the attributes of connector arrows in a bid to enhance their visibility or, perhaps, create a subtle presence. Further, Microsoft Word enables flowchart designers to add three dimensional effects (and shadows) to the various shapes populating flowcharts in Word. This is useful in boosting the visual impact of the final document.

We must bear in mind that Microsoft Word restricts the length (or extent) of a flowchart to a single page. This is a restriction imposed by the software maker on flowchart designers. This works well when a small flowchart is the objective, but can pose a problem when designers seek to create detailed flowcharts that cover more than one page. Designers can overcome this problem by cutting the desired flowchart shapes from one page and pasting the selection onto another page. We note this limitation interferes with the seamless aspect promoted by certain software manufacturers that market different flowchart packages. Perhaps Microsoft will remove this restriction in future iterations of Microsoft Word.

In the preceding paragraphs, we have examined some of the aspects of creating flowchart documents in Microsoft Word. The creators and designers of flowchart diagrams must bear in mind the fact that Microsoft Word offers many options and possibilities while enforcing a few limitations. However, designers can use the software package to the optimum when they have clarity in mind regarding the overall objective of the flowchart. We may state they must visualize the flowcharts in their minds before they translate it into a digital artifact. The scope of revision exists for all flowcharts and Microsoft Word is no exception to this rule.

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