SmartDraw.com, maker of the intuitive SmartDraw software for effective visual communications, recently announced the release of its new SmartDraw 2010 designed to help businesses be more productive by distributing the planning process, documenting company knowledge and improving their presentations. Now featuring a simple and easy integration with Microsoft Visio and SharePoint collaboration, SmartDraw 2010 allows businesses to leverage the power of visual communications with even greater efficiency and ease.
“SmartDraw 2010 offers a complete set of applications that make it easy for the average business person to create the kind of stunning and effective visuals that were once only possible with the help of a professional graphic designer,” said Paul Stannard, CEO of SmartDraw.com “With its intuitive design interface and new Visio integration filter, SmartDraw 2010 eliminates communication barriers with compelling graphics that speak volumes.”
Numerous studies have indicated that visual aids are incredibly powerful at enhancing both the understanding of concepts and knowledge retention. Communication that combines words and images is up to six times more effective than words alone. However, in the business realm, visual elements are often not included in presentations and project plans because they are seen as too difficult or time consuming to produce, requiring professional graphics expertise.
SmartDraw 2010 solves this problem by making it simple and easy to incorporate compelling visual elements into training programs, presentations and project plans to increase engagement, information retention, efficiency, and return on investment. SmartDraw automates tedious layout tasks to save time, prevent user frustration and eliminate amateur-looking design mistakes to improve the overall quality and professionalism of presentations, project maps, organizational charts, flow charts and more.
Mind mapping for planning, projects and documentation
SmartDraw 2010 allows project teams, managers and other business leaders to create mind maps that allow for better organization and documentation of brainstorming sessions and workflow scenarios. By identifying and connecting all of the multiple elements of a project or process in a visual image, participants can clearly identify how their roles or responsibilities relate to those of others on the team. Once the “brain dump” is complete, with a single click the mind map can be converted seamlessly to a Gantt chart for project planning and scheduling.
“In times of change, like we are in right now, it’s more important than ever to document processes, to preserve best practices and ensure business continuity, rather than reinventing the wheel every time there’s a job change or restructuring,” Stannard said. “Business can use SmartDraw 2010 to document knowledge and best practices, and to create visual work flows that can help team members understand responsibilities and workflow procedures, especially when taking on new roles. For strategic planning, it can help companies more quickly identify core competencies, strengths and weaknesses by enabling teams to communicate more effectively and then make sure everyone is all on the same page for taking action.”
Microsoft project compatible
SmartDraw 2010 is fully integrated with Microsoft Project®, allowing users to both import Gantt charts and export SmartDraw files as Microsoft Project Gantt chart files for sharing with team members. This quick and simple process enables teams to work more efficiently and stay on top of tasks and milestones, even in complex projects.
Presentation tools for maximum impact
SmartDraw 2010 is fully integrated with Microsoft PowerPoint, but offers advanced features that make for a more memorable and impactful presentation. Users can use SmartDraw to plan presentations with storyboards and sequence charts and diagrams with animation to help create impressive, effective presentations that help audiences retain more information, longer. With a full complement of presentation templates and point-and-click document integration, SmartDraw 2010 is fast and easy to use for anyone – no graphics background or IT assistance required.
Visio and Sharepoint integration for easy collaboration
SmartDraw 2010 features a new Microsoft Visio import filter that makes collaboration between technical and nontechnical colleagues easier and more efficient. With expanded features and greater ease of use, SmartDraw allows project teams to work beyond the capabilities of Visio, regardless of their level of technical proficiency. Integration with MS SharePoint allows team members to collaborate and share presentations, project planning documents and process flow charts to be more productive and efficient.
“SmartDraw 2010 provides a complete solution with content templates, examples and guidance to help users be more effective and get things done,” Stannard said. “It’s easy to learn and use, and we provide a library of free online eCourses, tips, tricks, resources and support on our website to help users get even more out of the program.”
SmartDraw’s solutions are used by more than half of the Fortune 500 and thousands of other private and public enterprises of all sizes to improve communications and refine operations.
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For more information about SmartDraw 2010 and to download a free trial, visit www.smartdraw.com.