Visualizing Data in Visio Diagrams

Visualizing data in VisioVisio has always had the ability to link a diagram to a Data Source, but in Visio 2007, the options for visualizing data in Visio are expanded considerably.  In previous versions, and in the Standard edition of Visio 2007 visualizing data in Visio can only happen when the type of diagram being used has the facility.

[br]These diagram types include the Organization chart, Project diagrams like Timelines and Gantt charts and Brainstorming diagrams, but visualizing data in Visio diagrams of other kinds has not been possible until now. Where it is possible to link data from an external source it is done through an automatic connection via a Wizard that constructs a diagram from the entire data.

New ways of Visualizing Data in Visio 2007

The new features in Visio 2007 Professional allow visualizing data in Visio drawings by selective connection of individual shapes to an external data source. It also has the ability to:

  • Add graphical formats to shapes depending on the data they contain
  • Create specific graphics in addition to the defaults supplied
  • Illustrate differences in data e.g. Work Flow diagram shapes that represent people or processes belonging to different departments
  • Refresh diagrams to reflect changes in the underlying data

Benefits of Visualizing Data in Visio Diagrams

The ability to link data to a diagram has a tremendous impact when the diagram is viewed.  Even an audience completely unconnected with the data displayed can very quickly see bottlenecks, problem areas and other performance issues and can identify where improvements can be made.  With the ability to update the drawing, the effectiveness of any changes can also be monitored.

TIP: When data graphics are used in a linked drawing, visualizing data in Visio is now more colourful and relevant to the data it represents. A diagram constructed in this way now means a lot more to anyone viewing it, and if it is shared via SharePoint or saved as a web page it can be seen by many people in different locations.

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Visualizing data in Visio