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Process Flow Chart

A process flow chart is a staple of Lean, and other continuous improvement methods.

It takes a process and transforms it into a visual representation of the flow of work. This makes it easy to highlight waste, and subsequently eliminate the things that don’t add value.

A process flow chart can be simple or complex. In general, a flow chart used to document a process is far less detailed than one that is created for the specific purpose of improving a process.

A process flow chart makes use of several basic shapes.

  • The rectangle indicates a process step.
  • A flattened oval represents the start or end of the process flow chart.
  • A rectangle is a process box that describes the step.
  • A diamond is a decision point.
  • And finally, a circle indicates a connector to another page of the process flow chart.

There are other specialized icons that are used in process flow charts, but those listed above are the main ones you will run across.

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