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Good Process Mapping Tool?

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  • #36929

    SixSigmaGuy
    Participant

    Can anyone recommend a good process mapping tool other than Visio?Β  I’d really need something that’s easy to use, fast to design (e.g., I’d like to be able to build process maps while I’m brainstorming with a group), and tailored towards process map creation.Β  I also need the ability to drill downΒ to other process maps. Β I’d really like to hear from actual users; not just suppliers.
    Thanks,
    SixSigmaGuy

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    #107648

    Bill W
    Participant

    Flowcharter 2000 by Igrafx has the ability to link process maps and provide a drill down method.

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    #107649

    SixSigmaGuy
    Participant

    Thanks, I’ll check it out.Β  Have you compared it to Visio?Β  Have you found it more productive?Β  I actually love Visio, but it’s not meeting my needs for the specific process mapping tasks I have on my plate.

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    #107655

    Atul Bhatt
    Participant

    I had seen a demo of ProVision a product from Proforma ( http://www.proformacorp.com ). I liked the ease with which you could create process maps/models

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    #107805

    Jeff Fuchs
    Participant

    Last year I started using ProcessModel to simulate processes. It turned out to be very easy to map certain processes because the connector arrows are done automatically. Now I often use it as a mapping tool, even if I am not going to use the simulation capabilities.
    What exactly didn’t you like about Visio?

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    #107809

    RCEddie123
    Participant

    Has anyone out there carried out a SWOTΒ analysis of the various tools available?
    Igrafx Six Sigma paackage appears to be the most comprehensive tool to me, especially with its ability to import Visio models and link directly to Minitab
    Process model 5 is alsoΒ good as a Process modeling and simulation tool.
    Unless i am missing something Visio does not come anywhere near either of these alternatives

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    #107811

    Guest
    Participant

    Try allClear you should be able to find a demo on the wed.
    Den

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    #107825

    Mike Walmsley
    Participant

    Try Excel

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    #107830

    Nash
    Participant

    Try using Structured Analysis in your JAD sessions to record Process and data Flows (data flow diagrams). Each process and its relevant data can be further broken down (granularized) until you reach the Functional Primitive. This is a good way to record your Process Flows which can then be handed over to a tech Writer to put into Visio.Β 

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    #107833

    Taylor
    Member

    How do you use excel to map?
    What I hate about visio is howΒ time consuming it is to create a map.Β  you should have a spreadsheet to enter Inputs, Activity, Dec Boxes, etc and have the map generate that way.Β  Does Excel do this?

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    #107851

    Anjula A Bishwas
    Participant

    Try Savvion, its a wonderful process mapping and simulation product. You can download a demo version from savvion.com. In case you need any help using it pls let me know.
    Regards,
    Anjula
    Β 

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    #107862

    Adnan Basrawi
    Participant

    I have used ProcessModel.Β The software allows you to define, measure, analyze, improve, and control the process.Β You will be able toΒ simulate the process, and create scenarios to obtain an optimized solutions.Β I think it is one of the most supporting toolΒ in Six Sigma deployment. I think it is the best. http://www.processmodel.comΒ 

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    #107875

    S1gmeister
    Member

    Try Sigma Flow – http://www.sigmaflow.com

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    #107889

    Dog Sxxt
    Participant

    The best mapping tool is a pencil, a drawing paper, an eraserΒ and your legs and eyes.
    BuildΒ your process map isΒ the meeting room is not a best way to do mapping. Go and see the floor and map the processes on the spot.Β 

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    #107894

    Solo
    Member

    SSG,
    If you are looking for a quick and dirty mapping tool (and cheap,Β no extra software to buy), Powerpoint has flowcharting shapes and arrows.Β Β Found underΒ the “autoshapes” toolbar…
    Downside: No drill down ability…
    -Solo
    Β 

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    #107897

    Stephen Bishenden
    Member

    I would highly recommend Sigma Flow
    It has a brainstorming (C&E module) and an excellent process mapping module as well as FMEA control plans etc etc etc.
    If you reply to this message i will forward you an evaluation video
    Β 
    Β 
    Β 

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    #107905

    Rach
    Participant

    I agree.Β  The best way to capture processes is to draw them on a very large piece of brown paper or a wipeboard (use a digital camera to caprture the completed process before you wipe it away).
    You review the process as you draw it and again at the end, the amount of errors and omissions made by the ‘user’ is unbelievable and you always end up making lots of changes.Β  Personally I like to keep all records of these changes.

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    #107999

    WynP
    Member

    I like Visio, but over the years have done a lot of work to develop a robust meta-model, with “objects” (shapes) and relationships. Its seems simple out-of-the-box but just is a drawing tool. However working at it you can add all sorts of “very rich” features. I link the process maps to an Access database to generate reprots, matrices (in Excel) and it has a great feature for layers – which is also supported by Acrobat V6.iGrafx is also very good (Flowcharter2003) especially for swimlane-models. Exporting data is possible for Excel, reports etc. but there are some quirks!Powerpoint is *just* a drawing tool – you can’t get at the data for exporting, reports or analysis. You can link to other maps (slides, files etc.) using hyperlinks (Ctrl-K)

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    #108000

    Ram RAMAKRISHNAN
    Participant

    Hi Six Sigma guy,
    I have developed and used a comprehensive process mapping tool as aI found Visio clumsy, clunky though powerful.
    The issues I faced are:
    1. Inability to link documents to a process map
    2. Inability to assign responsibility for a specific activity on a map.
    3. Inability to drill through- vertically down is easy- across into 3D is needed but unavaialbe.
    4. Trace and track who printed what so we can advise when documents or starndards are upgraded.
    I use this in my work and found so many ucleints and friends asking for it that I sell through our India office.
    The products are
    STREAM- Plain vanilla flow charting- lightening fast arond 4 times faster than Visio.
    ARCHIVE- a document traceability software at the the heart of which is STREAM. ARCHIVE is a good mind mapping tool- if you know Tony Buzan on the stuff.
    RamP- is an outastanding analytics presentation tool.
    YOu can email me or call me at 65-97399365 if this is what you are looking at and I will network you with my Sales Director who sits in India.
    Cheers
    Β 
    Ram
    MD, ODPL, Singapore
    Β 
    Β 
    Β 

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    #108245

    SixSigmaGuy
    Participant

    I tried to buy Igrafx’s package and I couldn’t find anyplace to do it on-line.Β  They required that I call in and talk to a salesman.Β  Sounds too fishy to me.Β  Why can’t I just buy it?Β  Anyone know a way to buy it from a website someplace without having to talk to a salesman?
    Β 

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    #108247

    SixSigmaGuy
    Participant

    Are you referring to SmartDraw’s application?Β  If so, I just downloaded it from http://www.SmartDraw.com.Β  It looks pretty good from the description.Β  Thanks for the lead!!

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    #108248

    SixSigmaGuy
    Participant

    Thanks,
    Can you point me to a website where I can read aboutΒ Stream and buy it if interested.

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    #108249

    SixSigmaGuy
    Participant

    Thanks,
    I just found it at http://www.AllClearOnline.com.
    Β 

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    #108250

    SixSigmaGuy
    Participant

    I use Excel quite a bit; how do you produce process maps with it?

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    #108251

    SixSigmaGuy
    Participant

    Not sure I understand.Β  Can you give more details?Β  What is JAD?

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    #108254

    SixSigmaGuy
    Participant

    Thanks,
    I just downloaded the demo.Β  Wow, it sure is expensive; is it worth the cost compared to the other products I’ve seen here?Β  SmartDraw looks pretty good too at 1/5th the price.

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    #108255

    SixSigmaGuy
    Participant

    Thanks,
    Seems pretty expensive.Β  Do you think it’s worth it?

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    #108260

    Ram RAMAKRISHNAN
    Participant

    Please visit http://www.odpl.net and click on DECISION SUPPORT SOFTWARE.
    You will see an array of products with demos and more.
    Β 
    It may alos interest you to know that we are currently beta testing a six sigma project tracking and management system based on our tool RamP also posted on the site.
    email me at [email protected] for a specific contact with your email id and some one ( not a spammer) will make contact.
    Cheers
    Β 
    Β 
    Β 

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    #108276

    Nash
    Participant

    JAD = Joint Application Development (Business Analysts + Tech Analysts + Tech Writer)
    RAD = Rapid Application Development

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    #108284

    RubberDude
    Member

    SSG,
    Go here http://www.lean.org/Community/Resources/mapicons.xls
    This is for value stream mapping.
    Otherwise, right click the toolbar in Excel, open and use the “drawing” toolbar.Β  It will probably pop up at the bottom of your worksheet.

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    #108306

    John J. McDonough
    Participant

    While you are trying them all out, take a peek at BP/Win.Β  Depending on what you are doing, it can be very effective.
    –McD
    Β 

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