How to make Process Maps



One useful and free tool is Lucid Chart. That's what I've used in the past for FDA documents.
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Fully vaccinated are you?
For many years I used Smartdraw - CAUTION: Auto-Start Sound at the link :(

It does everything Visio does (including integrating with MS Word) and much more but cost a lot less.

There are quite a few flow chart programs out there.


I always always always use Excel.


You don't have as much of a learning curve, most people have used it and understand the concepts of opening, saving, etc.

Most companies have it. You don't have the "I can't open your file" aspect of things forcing you to constantly save your work, THEN save it again in a different format.

In the insert objects section, is pretty much everything you'd want as far as arrows, connectors, etc. It's not as easy to use as, say, Visio at first. And you lose the benefit of standardized formatting.

But in my years out there now, I have never had someone say "That's not the standard symbol for a ...." It's more speed and accuracy that they want.


Fully vaccinated are you?
I have never used Excel, but I have used Powerpoint. It does a decent job and has some built in flow chart symbols, lines will "auto-connect", etc.

A big factor is how many people will use it. I think Visio charges per seat, too. Most places have the Office Suite which is why I assume Powerpoint and Excel are often used. Visio isn't part of the MS Office suite, so $$$

Steve Prevette

Deming Disciple
Super Moderator
It actually is amazing what you can do in Excel with some patience. I do my flowcharting there. As an alternate example, see attached.


  • BHandBF Track Plan (Large) (Elevations).xls
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