How to Create a Fantastic Flowchart (with Pictures)
Steps to Create a Fantastic Flowchart
Step1. Open a Blank Flowcharting Canvas
1. On the File menu, point to New.
2. Click Flowchart, and then select Basic Flowchart.
3. Click Create to open a blank flowchart canvas.
4. Drag and drop flowchart shapes onto your drawing page.
Step 2. Connect 2 Flowchart Shapes
1. Move the pointer over the shape to show the blue AutoConnect Arrows.
2. Click the blue Arrow that points toward where you want to connect the second shape.
Step 3. Connect 1 Flowchart Shape to Many
By default, connectors are designed as Right-Angle so that if you connect a single point on one shape to three other shapes it will look like the figure on the right.
To have each connector radiate straight from one shape to other shapes, you need to set the connectors to Straight Connector. There are two ways to do this: one is using the Connector tool; the other is converting the connectors directly.
Use the Connector Tool
1. Click the Connector tool on the Standard toolbar.
2. Click the drop down menu.
3. Choose Straight Connector from its drop down menu.
4. For each shape you want to connect to, drag from the same connection point on the first shape to a connection point on each of the other shapes.
Converting Flowchart Connectors
1. Right-click each connector and select Convert to Straight Connector.
4. Click the Pointer tool on the Standard toolbar to return to editing status.
Step 4. Add Description to Flowchart
To add description to a shape or connector, double click it, and then type. Click on any blank area of the page to finish typing. The text box is attached with the shape or connector. When you move the shape or connector, the text box also moves. If you are eager to learn more about guidelines of creating flowcharts, go to - Flow Chart Design.
Step 5. Save and Export Flowchart
1. Click Save on Home Menu to save as the default format.
2. Choose Save as on File Menu to save as other formats.
3. Hit Export & Send under File to export the flow chart as images, presentation slides and web documents and so on.
How to Print a Large Flowchart?
Print a Large Flowchart on Multiple Pieces of Paper
When your flowchart is bigger than the print paper, you can print it on multiple pieces of paper and them tape them together so that you can have a clearer presentation. Follow these steps:
1. On the File menu, click Print.
2. Click More Print Setup on the Print Settings tab.
3. Enter the number of pages into the Fit to boxes. Click OK.
Print a Large Flowchart on 1 Single Paper
If you really need to print a large flowchart on only one page, you need to make sure that the entire drawing is distributed on one single page. Check it by looking at the preview on the Preview Pane of the Print tab (File menu, Print tab). If not, you can set the drawing page to fit your flowchart.
1. Right-click on a blank area of the drawing page to open the Right-click Menu.
2. Choose Fit to Drawing and then print it out.
Standard Shapes for Creating Flowcharts
When you open a flow chart example in Edraw, the Basic Flowchart Shapes stencil opens, too. Each shape on the stencil stands for a certain step in a process.
A few of the shapes from the Basic Flowchart Shapes are commonly used, which are explained here. For more information , please refer to the expandable link - flowchart symbols.
Start or Terminator: Use this shape for the beginning or ending step of your process.
Process: This shape stands for a step in your process.
Decision: It indicates a point where the outcome of a decision dictates the next step. There can be various outcomes, but usually there are just two - yes and no.
Document: Document shape represents a step that results in a document.
Data: This shape shows that information is coming into the process from outside, or leaving the process. It can also represent materials and is sometimes called an Input/Output shape.
Predefined Process: You can Use it for a group of steps that combine to create a sub-process that is defined elsewhere, often on another page of the same drawing.
Tip: The above Basic Flowchart Shapes are multi-shape with floating Quick Buttons. You can move the pointer over the floating Quick Button to modify the shape quickly. For example, when you move the pointer over the Quick Button of a process shape, you can change it into other common shapes by selecting Data, Document, Decision, Start/End or Subprocess buttons as shown in the figure.
Delay: This kind of shapes represents a waiting period where no activity is done. In Process Mapping, delays are often important as they may result in adding to the cost of the product or simply delaying its production.
Database: Use this shape for a step that results in information being stored.
Build Flowcharts from Readymade Template
It is the fastest and simplest way to construct a flow chart by starting from a readily
available template. Edraw's Basic Flowchart Templates come with shapes that can be used to visualize various kinds of processes, and it is particularly helpful for presenting basic business processes, including top-down diagrams, information tracking diagrams, process planning diagrams and structure prediction diagrams. Here is an example of Development Flowchart.
If you want to use a ready made template, go to flowchart examples page and choose the flowchart that best suits you.
Create Flowcharts with the Best Software
With numerous abundance of functions and an extensive collection of shapes and templates, Edraw is definitely the best flowcharting software. The shapes and templates are fully editable and resizable. The drag and drop interface, automatic connection, alignment and distribution all make flowcharting process as easy as pie. Importable, exportable and seamlessly integratable in MS Office, it has become one of the most popular flowchart maker.