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SmartDraw is a diagramming and flow chart building tool from SmartDraw Software in San Diego, California.https://dudodiprj2sv7.cloudfront.net/product-logos/aJ/wP/JLFKLW5H49KG.pngSolid product at a reasonable price !We purchased SmartDraw to simplify the creation, editing & sharing of org charts for Caravan Health. As a start-up company, we had a limited budget for such technology, but were growing so quickly that two years ago we realized attempting to manage org charts using Word, Excel or Powerpoint was far-too cumbersome. The product we purchased at the time (Lucidchart) was inexpensive and was represented as simple to use and easy to share with others; sadly, in our experience both representations did not pan out. Sharing an org chart file presented many challenges for us when the CEO, COO, CFO or myself were on the road and attempting to access using laptops or iPads... and creating a printable version which was actually readable proved impossible. This created significant frustration at many levels, from managers to the executive team to our Board, as the perception created was one of inefficiency (or inability) within the HR team. Escalations to the provider proved useless, as the only means of communication was via email (no Account Manager to be able to reach out to, no phone number), and when we would receive a response, the most-common direction was provided by pointing us to an FAQ on their web site (rather than responding to and providing a resolution for our specific issues). Once the frustration finally boiled over and we started searching for an alternative solution, SmartDraw was a name I heard from several other HR leaders in my network, so we requested a demo of their product. The demo revealed a product which appeared to be intuitive and provided both a desktop and cloud-based version... both of which were important to us in our use. Implementation and uptake was quick and easy, which were also critical success factors for us, given our rapid growth and limited amount of time many leaders were willing to devote to something most felt should be as "simple" as org chart management.,Impressed with SmartDraw's ability to produce a clean & professional looking org chart... one which can be shared with a link or printed out in a format readable by all parties. We like that we are able to easily import data for org chart creation. Once the data is there, we can the easily place additional positions on an org chart with shapes automatically positioned and connected.,It would be great if there was an ability to customize some of the functions in the program, so that we have everything as integrated as possible. Since we still sometimes receive draft versions of new org structures from department leaders in Powerpoint, I with there was an export option to better-enable file-sharing. At first, it seems to take users a bit to adjust to zooming in/out in the program, which can be frustrating.,9,Saved time in org chart creation & management. Created a more visually appealing finished product for sharing in Board presentations, etc. Reduced user frustration dramatically !,Lucidchart,Lattice HQ, Slack, TINYpulseReview from a simplistic user.It is used by a select few members of the firm. We use it largely to create maps, but also occasionally timelines and flowcharts.,Provides examples to work off of--these are helpful when you don't know exactly where to start. Provides a number of stylistic options without making things too complex, so you can be creative without getting overwhelmed. Provides a wide variety of templates, meets a wide variety of needs.,The timelines are a bit difficult to work with. Sometimes the bubbles take on a mind of their own and don't let you move and manipulate them easily. For timelines with a lot of events, this can get especially difficult. The maps are missing some of the smaller countries, and sometimes you cannot fill in a smaller country without "sending to back" the larger countries around it. This becomes time consuming.,6,We have been able to create useful tools and visuals for clients.,Smart Design with SmartDrawWe use SmartDraw in my team for flow charting, milestone charting and process decomposition/documentation. Both SmartDraw and Visio are used in my company and within my organization. The problem/need that SmartDraw addresses is we had a need to create process diagrams across a globally distributed development team. We wanted a tool that was easy to use with several output formats for sharing at different levels.,SmartDraw has a great selection of templates to start from which are great thought starters when you don't know where to begin! Often you have data, processes, concepts, flows and interactions to organize, yet you don't always know what will be the best way to put it all together. SmartDraw is easy to use, I was productive right away and did not need to reference any help or tutorials in getting started. The UI is very intuitive and I could ramp up quickly. I can keep creating and SmartDraw doesn't slow me down. When working with large flows, SmartDraw dynamically extends its display area. I like that when I am creating a flow, I am not constrained to a predefined space. I can keep working and use the zoom in/out as needed to view my diagrams.,I would like to be able to select multiple objects and right click to align them. So far I have only found one way to get to the alignment and that is on the Design Screen.,9,SmartDraw is easy to learn and the impact is that our new team could come up to speed very quickly. Shortened the tool learning curve. SmartDraw templates provide uniformity among the documents created by my team which saves time in sharing information and design work. The in application file sharing saves time along with the in application save to another format to ship around to others who do not have the tool.,,Visual Studio.NET, Infragistics .NET Controls, Atlassian ConfluenceGive Sharepoint a try...but bewareCurrently, SmartDraw is used by various members of our organization in order to create dynamic process and organizational charts for both our clients as well as for internal use.,SmartDraw is great at visualizing process driven charts and models. They are simple, and somewhat understandable.,SmartDraw can still be a bit slow at times. While the ability to create complex charts and and figures that have multiple connecting (and intersecting) lines has improved, there are still some instances where SmartDraw can improve in (i.e.- sometimes I'm forced to freeze lines that I don't want a newly created line to automatically connect to). Restructuring the ribbon to be more user friendly and intuitive could also go a long way. I am not sure why text alignment is all the way to the right of the ribbon on the user interface. It is nearly non-existent when I minimize my window. To me, the functionality in the Design ribbon does not make sense (only because I use PowerPoint and Word on a daily basis). Design is more content creation and editing, sort of like the functionality in the Home ribbon. Creating additional right mouse click shortcut options would also save lots of time. I don't want to have to go to the ribbon every time I need to group or ungroup different sets. Printing and properly adjusting printing is a nightmare. It is not intuitive, manually adjusting only complicates things, and there aren't enough options that allow for properly adjusting your window for printing. Printing functionality is too complex and a real deterrent when attempting to share content with clients.,5,SmartDraw has provided good return for our internal purposes. Using it to understand an organization's structure and inner workings has been valuable. On the client side, creating steps and businesses processes has also been a big plus. It has helped decrease confusing reporting structures and has provided a detailed map for individuals to understand where they fit within their organization. Unfortunately, SmartDraw has been somewhat inefficient with some of the more complex projects on our plate and has really deterred certain employees from even wanting to use it.,,Microsoft Access, MS SharePoint, Campaign MonitorSimple and Professional SoftwareWe are a commercial general contractor. It gets used mainly by the superintendent for one of our locations where our company maintains all their facilities. Smartdraw is also used by the president of the company to create simple and clean drawings for our customers. It allows these drawings to be cleaner and look way more professional than hand-written. It is not comparable to AutoCAD by any means but it does make drawings look more professional and it is way easier to edit or change a drawing.,Adjusting size/dimensions for the drawing (up or down depending) Simple to function Move/Delete/Change drawing Exporting to read-able PDF,Very glitchy. It randomly will move a line in the drawing especially after saving and re-opening. Some things don't make any sense the way it is designed. The add-on images are weird - Most would like that views are aerial vs. a picsart type image.,5,Positive impact - easier to create professional looking drawing and send back and forth to superintendent for editing. Easier to e-mail copies or drawing changes to our customers.
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SmartDraw
12 Ratings
Score 8.0 out of 101
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SmartDraw Reviews

SmartDraw
12 Ratings
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Score 8.0 out of 101
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Brad Holliday, PHR, SHRM-CP, CBM, MBA profile photo
December 03, 2018

SmartDraw Review: "Solid product at a reasonable price !"

Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source
We purchased SmartDraw to simplify the creation, editing & sharing of org charts for Caravan Health. As a start-up company, we had a limited budget for such technology, but were growing so quickly that two years ago we realized attempting to manage org charts using Word, Excel or Powerpoint was far-too cumbersome. The product we purchased at the time (Lucidchart) was inexpensive and was represented as simple to use and easy to share with others; sadly, in our experience both representations did not pan out. Sharing an org chart file presented many challenges for us when the CEO, COO, CFO or myself were on the road and attempting to access using laptops or iPads... and creating a printable version which was actually readable proved impossible. This created significant frustration at many levels, from managers to the executive team to our Board, as the perception created was one of inefficiency (or inability) within the HR team. Escalations to the provider proved useless, as the only means of communication was via email (no Account Manager to be able to reach out to, no phone number), and when we would receive a response, the most-common direction was provided by pointing us to an FAQ on their web site (rather than responding to and providing a resolution for our specific issues). Once the frustration finally boiled over and we started searching for an alternative solution, SmartDraw was a name I heard from several other HR leaders in my network, so we requested a demo of their product. The demo revealed a product which appeared to be intuitive and provided both a desktop and cloud-based version... both of which were important to us in our use. Implementation and uptake was quick and easy, which were also critical success factors for us, given our rapid growth and limited amount of time many leaders were willing to devote to something most felt should be as "simple" as org chart management.
  • Impressed with SmartDraw's ability to produce a clean & professional looking org chart... one which can be shared with a link or printed out in a format readable by all parties.
  • We like that we are able to easily import data for org chart creation. Once the data is there, we can the easily place additional positions on an org chart with shapes automatically positioned and connected.
  • It would be great if there was an ability to customize some of the functions in the program, so that we have everything as integrated as possible.
  • Since we still sometimes receive draft versions of new org structures from department leaders in Powerpoint, I with there was an export option to better-enable file-sharing.
  • At first, it seems to take users a bit to adjust to zooming in/out in the program, which can be frustrating.
I believe SmartDraw is a great tool for small- to mid-sized organizations for simplifying the production and management of org charts. We've also had the PMO experiment with the use of some of their flow charts as well.

If an organization has an HCM with the capability of producing (good!) org charts, that is likely the best option... but many that I have used in my 30-year HR career don't. So there is definitely a need for SmartDraw in the market!
Read Brad Holliday, PHR, SHRM-CP, CBM, MBA's full review
Kimberly Higgins profile photo
November 18, 2016

SmartDraw: "Review from a simplistic user."

Score 6 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source
It is used by a select few members of the firm. We use it largely to create maps, but also occasionally timelines and flowcharts.
  • Provides examples to work off of--these are helpful when you don't know exactly where to start.
  • Provides a number of stylistic options without making things too complex, so you can be creative without getting overwhelmed.
  • Provides a wide variety of templates, meets a wide variety of needs.
  • The timelines are a bit difficult to work with. Sometimes the bubbles take on a mind of their own and don't let you move and manipulate them easily. For timelines with a lot of events, this can get especially difficult.
  • The maps are missing some of the smaller countries, and sometimes you cannot fill in a smaller country without "sending to back" the larger countries around it. This becomes time consuming.
SmartDraw is well suited to create simple but visually appealing graphics. It is not so well suited for more detailed and complex scenarios.
Read Kimberly Higgins's full review
Cyndi Recker profile photo
November 14, 2016

User Review: "Smart Design with SmartDraw"

Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source
We use SmartDraw in my team for flow charting, milestone charting and process decomposition/documentation. Both SmartDraw and Visio are used in my company and within my organization. The problem/need that SmartDraw addresses is we had a need to create process diagrams across a globally distributed development team. We wanted a tool that was easy to use with several output formats for sharing at different levels.
  • SmartDraw has a great selection of templates to start from which are great thought starters when you don't know where to begin!
  • Often you have data, processes, concepts, flows and interactions to organize, yet you don't always know what will be the best way to put it all together.
  • SmartDraw is easy to use, I was productive right away and did not need to reference any help or tutorials in getting started. The UI is very intuitive and I could ramp up quickly.
  • I can keep creating and SmartDraw doesn't slow me down. When working with large flows, SmartDraw dynamically extends its display area. I like that when I am creating a flow, I am not constrained to a predefined space. I can keep working and use the zoom in/out as needed to view my diagrams.
  • I would like to be able to select multiple objects and right click to align them. So far I have only found one way to get to the alignment and that is on the Design Screen.
SmartDraw is well suited to many flows and diagrams related to software and system development. I use another prototyping tool, Indigo Studio, to create storyboards. I have not found a great way to do story boarding in SmartDraw...yet.
Read Cyndi Recker's full review
No photo available
November 22, 2016

SmartDraw Review: "Give Sharepoint a try...but beware"

Score 5 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source
Currently, SmartDraw is used by various members of our organization in order to create dynamic process and organizational charts for both our clients as well as for internal use.
  • SmartDraw is great at visualizing process driven charts and models. They are simple, and somewhat understandable.
  • SmartDraw can still be a bit slow at times. While the ability to create complex charts and and figures that have multiple connecting (and intersecting) lines has improved, there are still some instances where SmartDraw can improve in (i.e.- sometimes I'm forced to freeze lines that I don't want a newly created line to automatically connect to).
  • Restructuring the ribbon to be more user friendly and intuitive could also go a long way. I am not sure why text alignment is all the way to the right of the ribbon on the user interface. It is nearly non-existent when I minimize my window. To me, the functionality in the Design ribbon does not make sense (only because I use PowerPoint and Word on a daily basis). Design is more content creation and editing, sort of like the functionality in the Home ribbon.
  • Creating additional right mouse click shortcut options would also save lots of time. I don't want to have to go to the ribbon every time I need to group or ungroup different sets.
  • Printing and properly adjusting printing is a nightmare. It is not intuitive, manually adjusting only complicates things, and there aren't enough options that allow for properly adjusting your window for printing. Printing functionality is too complex and a real deterrent when attempting to share content with clients.
SmartDraw is most relevant when creating organizational structure charts or chain of command content. I wouldn't use it to analyze data or share content with someone who doesn't already have SmartDraw.
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No photo available
November 21, 2016

SmartDraw Review: "Simple and Professional Software"

Score 5 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source
We are a commercial general contractor. It gets used mainly by the superintendent for one of our locations where our company maintains all their facilities. Smartdraw is also used by the president of the company to create simple and clean drawings for our customers. It allows these drawings to be cleaner and look way more professional than hand-written. It is not comparable to AutoCAD by any means but it does make drawings look more professional and it is way easier to edit or change a drawing.
  • Adjusting size/dimensions for the drawing (up or down depending)
  • Simple to function
  • Move/Delete/Change drawing
  • Exporting to read-able PDF
  • Very glitchy. It randomly will move a line in the drawing especially after saving and re-opening.
  • Some things don't make any sense the way it is designed.
  • The add-on images are weird - Most would like that views are aerial vs. a picsart type image.
SmartDraw works for small business in contracting (residential or commercial). It is not suitable for large structural engineering/surveying/architecture.
Read this authenticated review
No photo available
August 30, 2016

SmartDraw Review: "Smart Draw Great Tool to Replace other drawing tools"

Score 10 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source
SmartDraw is being used by a number of departments within our organization. It addresses building layouts as well as flow charting. We also are using it for our team that works with the tool to develop maps for use by internal and external folks. This tool allows all of our departments to be on a standard platform for editing drawings etc.
  • The export capability is great.
  • The ability to create flow charts is easy.
  • The tool bars provide us with access to all the tools we need.
  • I believe the improvement can be in the compression of documents when they are saved in different file formats.
SmartDraw is suited for small, medium, and large businesses alike. We are using SmartDraw in some departments which had licenses for Adobe Acrobat. The SmartDraw application can handle even complex documents which is great since the tool has replaced our Corel Draw application and it covers off all of the Corel functions nicely.
Read this authenticated review

SmartDraw Scorecard Summary

About SmartDraw

SmartDraw is a diagramming and flow chart building tool from SmartDraw Software in San Diego, California.
Categories:  Diagramming

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SmartDraw Technical Details

Operating Systems: Unspecified
Mobile Application:No