Solid product at a reasonable price !

Overall Satisfaction with SmartDraw

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.
  • Saved time in org chart creation & management.
  • Created a more visually appealing finished product for sharing in Board presentations, etc.
  • Reduced user frustration dramatically !
As noted in first question, SmartDraw has them beat in every category I can think of (except for price; but need to keep in mind the old adage "you get what you pay for"!). This product allows for VASTLY-improved uploading of data than the Lucidchart product, and customer service is real, tangible service... they understand that when you have a question and need an answer, waiting 2 or 3 days for an email response is not acceptable.
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!