Many events and processes need meticulous planning and consideration before they are put into action; understanding the impact that even small a change will have in a business or educational setting is key to maintaining productivity and success.
Planning tools in general are useful at the moment, especially with organisations adjusting to a new fully remote or hybrid way of working or learning. Tools to help with planning are readily available, but Visio is a little different – it is Microsoft’s visualisation tool, producing flow diagrams from available data, and it is available as a web app to all Microsoft 365 commercial license subscribers, including Business Basic and beyond. It uses the standard layout and symbols of a flow diagram system, elongated circles for start and end points, rectangles for actions or instructions, rhombus for decisions and parallelograms for data input or output.
Many places can benefit from a visualisation method when planning. Processes are rapidly changing right now, and not everyone thinks in the same way. When you’re planning with a team, it can be helpful to be able to visualise the sequence from beginning to end – potential problems can be spotted more easily, and contingencies can be provisioned for. Visualisation is especially important when it comes to planning or adjusting a process that can have knock-on effects across a whole organisation, or when creating a brand new process, system, app or website that customers, clients, employees or colleagues will interact with.
Visio is not only useful for process planning, however – it can be an invaluable tool, for example, to separate tasks and plan effectively for a potential project, or to build an organisational hierarchy reference chart.
Its position as an app inside the Microsoft ecosystem also means that you can drop Vision diagrams and documents directly into Teams, or into Word or Excel documents. You can also use it to quickly visualise data inside Excel, in order to gain insights into that data.