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Process v Document

Started by jasond77, January 09, 2012, 02:07:57 PM

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I have a process which requires a task of creating a document, thus making the document the output of the process, obviously.

My question is how should this be represented in Visio? The obvious way is to have the rectangle process named 'Create Document' with a line/arrow leading to the document shape with the title of the document.

However, are both actually required or is the outout of the process 'create document' a given so the document shape needn't be used?

Alternativley can I group the two boxes, therefore the line/arrow is not required? As in have the process box and have the document box overlapping slighlty which will save space and lines/arrows on the swim lane doc I am attempting to create

Thanks in advance for any advice offered


There may be some standards for process diagrams, but, I doubt it.  There is certainly a lot of info on the web and this forum.  In fact, check this link by VisioGuy, which points to David Parker's book on Process Diagrams

I don't normally make such diagrams, but how you show this is pretty much your choice.  I'd probably use two shapes with a joining connection.  That way, if I want to elaborate the details of "create document", there's a natural insertion point between the two shapes.

Visio 2019 Pro

Paul Herber

I would say you need both, the process of creating the document and the document itself are two different entities. I'd also add that the line from process to document could be of a different type, maybe dashed, just to show that it is not part of the flow sequence, but a consequence of that sequence.
If you are using Viso 2010 then you could use a container , I don't think grouping woule be appropriate here. Add the process and the document to the container.

Electronic and Electrical engineering, business and software stencils for Visio -


Hi Jason

you are talking about standards while using terms that make me think you are not working within those standards (not meant to be impolite). So I am not sure where your priorities are.

Did you check on ?

Some very basic training, that also will answer your question on how to visualize your process, can be found here:

I hope that helps.

Best Regards

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