Making a Flowchart in PowerPoint

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Mankind’s need to communicate fluently and efficiently led to the invention of various techniques such as smoke signals, drum beats, oral languages, sign language, Morse code, digital communications, and more. These techniques span the gamut of communication systems and technologies from primitive times to the modern day. In recent times, the PowerPoint package from Microsoft Corporation has emerged as a major vehicle that promotes live communication within groups of people. The detailed level of visual communication afforded by PowerPoint allows the creation of deep dive flowcharts on this medium. Some experts have advocated the creation of a flowchart in PowerPoint as a means to expand the capabilities designed into PowerPoint. This assertion stems from the fact that PowerPoint helps the designers and creators of flowcharts to create distinctive digital illustrations.

Shapes help to create visual representations that differentiate one action from another. For instance, the shape of an arrow indicates direction, while a rectangle can indicate a certain stage in a system or process. Designers that seek to create a flowchart in PowerPoint can select from in-built repositories of SmartArt or Shapes to affix various shapes in a flowchart. The sheer variety of shapes built into these repositories allows designers to depict a variety of actions, stages, decision points, sub-processes, etc. This user-friendly aspect of PowerPoint allows novice operators to create competent efforts at creating a fresh flowchart (or editing a PowerPoint slide). In addition, a flowchart in PowerPoint includes the use of multiple colors from a pre-configured palette. These capabilities afford designers and creators plenty of scope to create original flowcharts and to explore any system or process on a PowerPoint slide.

The depiction of direction and connections between stages remains central to the creation of any modern flowchart. Designers that work to create a flowchart in PowerPoint can choose from a variety of straight lines and convoluted connectors to address the gaps between various stages in a flowchart. PowerPoint also offers flowchart creators the use of straight arrows, elbow shapes, curved lines, bi-directional arrows, etc. These connectors perform the vital function of indicating the overall flow of a process and the sub-processes that power the various stages of a master process or system. Designers can append cryptic forms of data adjacent to these connectors in a bid to assist readers and reviewers to expand their understanding of systems and processes. In addition, designers have the ability to format these connectors in terms of colors, styles, effects, etc. This range of actions allows a flowchart in PowerPoint the proverbial space to depict varieties of systems and processes and their sub-stages.

Colors define the world around us and are intrinsic to nature and natural processes. Colors also attract human attention and this fact can be leveraged to create digital flowcharts of a certain distinction. Those working to create a flowchart in PowerPoint can choose to depict multiple colors in the various stages of a flowchart. Microsoft aids this venture by presenting sets of color combinations within PowerPoint. These combinations use contrasting colors or colors that match in terms of visual gradations. PowerPoint also affords designers the flexibility to select primary theme colors as the dominant motif inside a flowchart presentation. In addition, color accents are available and these depict various shades of a certain color. This ability to pick colors of choice is important because it boosts the visual element of a flowchart in PowerPoint. In addition, flowchart designers can change or alter the colors of a flowchart when they seek to design a future version of a system or process.

Process flows depicted in a flowchart can be embellished with labels with a view to boost reader comprehension. This is a vital ability because it enables designers to communicate better with co-workers and flowchart reviewers. PowerPoint allows designers to affix labels adjacent to connectors on a flowchart. Labels also enable flowchart designers to add hyper-links to external sources of information. Readers and reviewers can visit these resources to gain a better understanding of the mechanisms depicted on a master flowchart. In addition, labels can guide readers to sub-processes that impart deeper meaning and insight into the operation of a system or process. Designers can use standard font sizes for labels or adjust font size in line with the template. Experts note that this ability to append additional information and sources of reference creates huge advantages for a flowchart in PowerPoint.

Formatting is an essential stage in the work practices that attend the creation of digital diagrams. The pursuit of visual uniformity is crucial because a formatted diagram presents a picture of professionalism. It also attests to the levels of attention invested by a designer in his or her flowchart creations. Microsoft empowers flowchart creators to format every aspect of a flowchart in PowerPoint. Designers can re-visit their digital creations and select multiple shapes in a bid to format these entities. They can select blocks of shapes inside a flowchart and format them on terms of font size, background color, placement inside the diagram, etc. This ability is compounded by the fact that PowerPoint offers a format painter that enables faster formatting of a flowchart diagram. However, PowerPoint enforces a certain restriction in that designers must format shapes and connectors separately.

Flowchart designers may work on multiple projects at the same time. These time constraints may erode the quality of flowcharts and this may pose an unacceptable risk. Hence, PowerPoint enables flowchart designers to group and un-group sets of shapes built inside a flowchart diagram. This ability allows designers and creators to revise particular segments of a diagram in response to a variety of reasons. Grouping adds momentum to work schedules because a set of shapes (when grouped) can be visually treated as a single shape. This allows for quick revision or alteration of the information or visual characteristics of a set of shapes. An un-grouping operation returns the individual shapes to their original state. Creators that must upgrade a flowchart with fresh information or additional stages can use this feature to quickly input the new information or delete stages now considered redundant.

The choice of font is an important aspect of a flowchart in PowerPoint. Designers may use any font and font size when they design these illustrations. However, they must bear in mind that text and shapes inside a presentation slide must be clearly legible for every member of the audience. Hence, experts aver that designers must adhere to 16 points for text fonts and 14 points for labels. This approach also allows creators to accommodate an optimum level of text inside a flowchart. However, flowchart presenters have the choice to zoom into a section of a certain flowchart in a bid to boost comprehension on the part of the audience.

These paragraphs have examined some of the aspects of creating a flowchart in PowerPoint. Microsoft has engineered this software package with a raft of capabilities with a view to promote visual presentations. However, the designers and creators of flowcharts must bear in mind that the stages of a diagram must conform to the actual principles and actions that animate a certain process. Designers can alter or re-imagine the visual representation of a process in various contexts, but the facts that attend a process must remain inviolate.

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