Why Use Javascript Flowchart for Process Visualization

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Our dhtmlxDiagram library consists of various types of diagrams. One of the most widely used is a javascript flowchart, which shows any kind of workflow, process or system. You can download the evaluation version of dhtmlxDiagram and try it out yourself.

What Are Javascript Flowcharts For?

A javascript flowchart (otherwise called a javascript workflow diagram, process flow or simply flow diagram) can be integrated into an app for visualization of company’s activities. It can reflect the whole business process, workflow in certain departments or steps of a single operation. The scope of your diagram depends entirely on the needs of end users.

javascript wide flowchart
Wide flowchart

Let’s have a look at some of the cases when building a flowchart may be useful:

  • Illustrating a process with this diagram type helps company’s members better understand this process and what it comprises.
  • Finding errors, drawbacks and weak points gets much easier with a detailed workflow representation in a flowchart.
  • Flowcharts are very effective for explaining complicated issues to coworkers or team members, as they show the process step by step.
  • These diagrams can also be used while brainstorming to visualize a problem, ways of solving it or what should be improved.

As you can see, js flowcharts serve lots of different purposes. For that reason they’re applied in a wide range of fields. We’ll give several examples.

Flowcharts are frequently used in programming to describe complex sequences and subjects like user’s path on the website, code structure or software architecture.

Business modeling also benefits from js workflow diagrams for illustrating business processes, building strategies, visualizing infrastructure and other objectives.

Process flow diagrams are considered to be handy tools for project managers, as they perfectly fit for showing steps of a project.

Flowcharts are also popular in the field of enterprise resource planning to demonstrate the flow of human, financial, manufacturing or any other resources.

Besides, they are often applied in scientific methods and research.

How Flowcharts Help to Visualize Data

Flowcharts can be used in numerous ways to visualize data due to the variety of graphic elements characteristic of this diagram type. You can combine flowchart elements in a unique way to illustrate what you need.

Our library provides more than 30 different types of flowchart shapes, each type meant for a particular purpose. Here are the most frequently used shapes:

In many cases a flowchart starts with a “start” shape and ends with an “end” shape, which mark the beginning and finishing points of a process.
start and end shapes

“Process” shapes are drawn in the middle of a flowchart as certain steps of a process, for example, as an action to be taken by users on the website. Meanwhile, process steps are based on “preparation” shapes that describe the conditions in which the process is flowing (for instance, user is not logged in).
process and preparation shapes

The “or” shape allows adding several possible outcomes of previous steps.
or shape

You can also make use of “subroutine” shapes, which are predefined process shapes linking to an existing process in another flowchart.
subroutine shape

Among other common shapes are “database” and “document” shapes. Their names speak for themselves.
document and database shapes

Apart from shapes, connectors also play an important role for building a flowchart, as they show how flowchart elements are related to each other and guarantee that your diagram is read correctly.
flowchart connectors

Why Build Javascript Flowcharts with dhtmlxDiagram

Being able to manipulate a flowchart is significant for workflow visualization. Rich and flexible API gives an opportunity to achieve any goal you set with our javascript/html5 workflow diagram.

1. Customizing and styling each flowchart element to tailor it to your needs

A crucial feature of our javascript flowchart is that you can set a different type for each flowchart shape with the help of the type attribute. You can adjust the look and feel of your diagram to your requirements by redefining the corresponding CSS classes. Moreover, you decide how far your shapes are situated from each other specifying their margins.

2. Manipulating shapes freely via API to make changes whenever needed

Our js flowchart is highly flexible. It’s always possible to add new shapes, delete the old ones or even start your diagram from scratch by using the related data collection API.

The add method enables you to add new shapes to your flowchart:
add shapes
Deleting some of the shapes you don’t need or even all of them can be done with the remove method:
remove shape
remove all shapes
If you’re satisfied with the shapes you have, but their content needs to be improved, you can apply the update method to place new data into your shape.
update text

3. Making wide flowcharts easy-to-read with zoom and scroll

Wide flowcharts with lots of data don’t cause trouble to you and your end users anymore due to zooming and scrolling features. Taking into account your flowchart’s size, you can zoom in or out with the help of the scale property:
scale diagram
Another option is to add horizontal and/or vertical scrolls for viewing your flowchart.

4. Exporting flowcharts to PNG and PDF

Your process visualization can be easily saved, stored and shared with others if you export your flowchart to png or pdf.
The pdf or png export methods permit not only exporting diagrams as they are, but also adjusting the export settings:
export settings

5. Providing seamless back-end integration and cross-browser support

What is really vital, our javascript flowcharts can be integrated into any web app performing equally well in all modern browsers and with any server-side technologies. Data is easily loaded into your diagram in the JSON format. On top of that, the coming spring update 2.1 is going to introduce a diagram editor bringing a much more interactive javascript flowchart for end users.
All that makes our library an indispensable tool for process visualization.

Conclusion

Process visualization becomes really easy and enjoyable with a great variety of features javascript flowcharts offer. They can reflect any interrelated facts in a consistent structure. You can apply this diagram type to illustrate whatever you need and get a very descriptive and intuitive visualization.

We do hope that our article will help you to take in the peculiarities of flowcharts and create your own javascript process flow diagrams.

Our documentation provides developers with more details of how to build flowcharts as well as other diagram types included in dhtmlxDiagram library.

If you’d like to give javascript flow diagrams a try now, just download our 30-day trial version.
Find more diagram types on dhtmlxDiagram page and contact us if you have any questions.

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