How to Make a Flowchart in PowerPoint

Flowcharts are visual diagrams that show a process or workflow in clear, easy-to-understand steps. Adding a flowchart to your PowerPoint presentation is an excellent way to communicate complex ideas and processes efficiently.

In this comprehensive guide, you’ll learn how to make a professional flowchart in PowerPoint in 7 simple steps.

Benefits of Using Flowcharts in Presentations

Here are some of the key reasons why you should use flowcharts in your PowerPoint slides:

  • Simplify complex processes – Break down intricate workflows into simple, sequential steps
  • Improve audience understanding – Visuals allow viewers to grasp concepts rapidly
  • Enhance presentation visuals – Make your slides more interesting and engaging
  • Focus attention – Draw viewers to crucial information
  • Save time explaining – Let your flowchart do the talking instead of elaborating unnecessarily

Flowchart Elements

The basic elements of a flowchart include:

  • Shapes – Represent steps and stages in a process
  • Arrows – Indicate flow and sequence
  • Text – Explain what each step entails
  • Decisions – Show different possible paths with yes/no options

Common shapes used are rectangles, diamonds, ovals. Each shape has a specific meaning.

Step 1 – Insert a SmartArt Graphic

The easiest way to create a flowchart in PowerPoint is using SmartArt graphics.

Follow these steps:

  1. Go to the Insert tab
  2. Click SmartArt in the Illustrations group
  3. Select Process in the left pane
  4. Choose a flowchart layout you like
  5. Click OK to insert it

This inserts a pre-designed flowchart with placeholders you can now customize.

Insert SmartArt Flowchart

Step 2 – Replace Placeholder Text

The next step is to replace the generic [Text] placeholders in your flowchart with your actual content.

To do this:

  1. Click inside a shape to edit the text
  2. Type your text
  3. Press Enter to move to the next shape

Repeat this for all the shapes in your flowchart.

Step 3 – Resize and Position Shapes

If needed, you can resize, move, add or delete shapes in your flowchart.

To resize a shape:

  1. Click the shape and drag the handles on the sides
  2. Resize proportionally by holding Shift while dragging

To reposition, just click and drag a shape to the desired spot on the slide.

Step 4 – Add Connectors

Connect your flowchart shapes to indicate the order and flow using arrow connectors.

To add a connector:

  1. Go to the SmartArt Tools Design tab
  2. Click Add Shape > Connector
  3. Click and drag from one shape to another to link them

Repeat to link all the shapes in the proper sequence.

Add Flowchart Connectors

Step 5 – Apply Color and Effects

Make your flowchart visually appealing by applying color, 3D effects, shadows and more.

  1. Select the flowchart and go to SmartArt Tools Design tab
  2. Open the Shape Styles gallery to choose colors
  3. Click Shape Effects to add 3D, shadows, etc.

Use a consistent color scheme so your flowchart looks professional.

Step 6 – Animate the Diagram

To make your flowchart more dynamic and highlight important steps, add some animation:

  1. Click a shape and go to the Animations tab
  2. Select an animation effect like Fade, Grow/Shrink etc.
  3. Set the start option as needed
  4. Repeat for other shapes

Stagger the animations so they don’t all play simultaneously.

Animating Flowchart

Step 7 – Present with Confidence!

With your flowchart ready, the final step is to present it with confidence!

Rehearse what you’ll say about each step on the flowchart and use a laser pointer to guide the audience through it. Encourage questions at the end.

Now you know how to make a professional flowchart in PowerPoint! Use this visual aid to simplify complex ideas for your viewers.