Creating Organizational Charts Using SmartDraw

Learn how to use SmartDraw to create, edit and design organizational charts.

There are lots of programs available for creating organizational charts, including Word, PowerPoint and Visio.  (In an earlier blog, I showed you how to create one within PowerPoint.) SmartDraw is a great option if you are looking for a program that’s easy to use and with a large inventory of charts.  SmartDraw is a powerful tool for creating flowcharts, organization charts, mind maps, project charts, and many other visuals.  It is designed to make creating an org chart easy, while giving you a powerful set of features.  Below are the step-by- step instructions for creating organizational charts using SmartDraw.  This will show you how easy it is to use.

Choosing the Type of Organizational Chart

Your first step is to choose an organizational chart from the list of templates available.

  1. Open SmartDraw.
  2. Navigate to the Org Charts section in the home panel (on the far left of your screen). There are three types, and each as multiple templates available.
    • Org Charts
    • Inverted Org Charts
    • Horizontal Org Charts smart-draw-oc-image-1
  3. You can also scroll down through the Org Charts group to view various examples. smart-draw-oc-image-2
  4. Click on the desired organizational chart to best fit your needs. (For this example, I chose the Corporate Structure example.) smart-draw-oc-image-3
  5. Once the chart is selected, the full program opens with your starter chart. The panel on the left is called the SmartPanel and it houses all the commands necessary to complete your chart.
Adding Names to Boxes
  1. Click within the desired box.
  2. Type the pertinent information. smart-draw-oc-image-4
  3. Press the arrow keys or TAB to navigate to the other boxes to type in the necessary information. NOTE:  You can also use your mouse to click within the boxes to be edited. 
Adding Peers

Peers are individuals or titles that are on the same level

  1. Select a box on the same level.
  2. Navigate to the SmartPanel (on the right of your screen).
  3. Click the Add Left button to add the box to the left of the selection. OR Click the Add Right button to add the box to the right of the selection.smart-draw-oc-image-5
  4. Type the desired information within the new box.
Adding Direct Reports

Direct Reports are individuals or titles that directly report to the selected item.

  1. Select the box to receive a direct report.
  2. Navigate to the SmartPanel (on the right of your screen).
  3. Click the Add Down button to add the box below of the selection. smart-draw-oc-image-6
  4. Type the desired information within the box.
Removing Positions (boxes)

Click on the box to be removed and press the DELETE key.  The remaining boxes will re-arrange themselves automatically. smart-draw-oc-image-7

Rearranging Boxes within Charts
  1. Click on the box you wish to move.
  2. While holding down the left mouse button, drag the box to its new location. You will notice the connector lines will appear showing where it would attach when released.
  3. Once you have the box where you want it, release the mouse.
  4. SmartDraw will automatically line up the boxes and create the connectors. smart-draw-oc-image-8
Adding Assistants
  1. Click on the box you are adding an assistant to.
  2. Navigate to the SmartPanel.
  3. Click the Add Assistant button.
  4. Type the desired information within the box. smart-draw-oc-image-9
Adding Co-Managers
  1. Click on the box you where the co-manager is to be added.
  2. Navigate to the SmartPanel.
  3. Click the Add Co-Manager button.
  4. Type the desired information within the box. smart-draw-oc-image-10
Redesigning Organizational Charts

Once you’ve completed your organizational chart, you may want to make some design changes to enhance its appearance.

Making All the Boxes the Same Size

Navigate to the SmartPanel and click the Make Same Size button. smart-draw-oc-image-11

Change Box Shapes
  1. Click on the box to be changed.
  2. Navigate to the SmartPanel.
  3. Click the down arrow for Change Shape.
  4. Click on the appropriate shape option. smart-draw-oc-image-12
Working with Chart Properties

The Chart Properties are located in the lower part of the Smart Panel.

  • Chart Direction –Click on one of the options from the drop down to change the direction of the chart. smart-draw-oc-image-13
  • Branch Style – Select the line within the chart you wish to change and select the Branch Style to apply from the drop down. NOTE:  The Branch Styles will change depending on the chart and direction. smart-draw-oc-image-14
  • Vertical Spacing – Change the number to increase or decrease the Vertical spacing between items.
  • Horizontal Spacing – Change number to increase or decrease the Horizontal spacing between items. smart-draw-oc-image-15
Changing the Theme
  1. Navigate to the Home tab.
  2. Click the Themes button. smart-draw-oc-image-16
  3. Select the appropriate theme from the built-in themes listed or click on the Categories button and choose a theme from one of the various categories. smart-draw-oc-image-17
Changing the Appearance of Individual Items
  1. Select the Items you wish to change. (Use CTRL+Click to select multiple items.)
  2. Navigate to the Home tab.
  3. Click the Styles button. smart-draw-oc-image-18
  4. Choose the appropriate style from the options listed.
Completed Organizational Chart smart-draw-oc-image-19

To learn more about Office applications, please check out my courses at vlbteched.teachable.com.

 

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