How to Make a Swimlane Flow Chart in Excel with OnePager Express

Creating an Excel flow chart with multiple swimlanes to show in PowerPoint

When you are managing a project, it is important to know who is responsible for each deliverable, and when assignments are due. Pictures, especially PowerPoint flowcharts with swimlanes, are the easiest way to communicate deadlines and responsibilities.

If you don't want to build a PowerPoint flowchart with swimlanes by hand, and you don't have access to Visio, you can use OnePager Express with Excel to create one instead.

OnePager Express is presentation software for Excel that creates swimlane PowerPoint flow charts with the click of a button. To learn more, you can download a free trial.

You can watch a video tutorial on this topic or continue reading for step-by-step instructions on how to make a swimlane flowchart in PowerPoint based on project data in Excel:

  1. Start with a simple Excel spreadsheet. In the example below, we have listed each task, the start and finish dates, and who is responsible for completing it:
    List of tasks and responsibilities in an Excel spreadsheet.
  2. Next, double-click the OnePager Express icon on your desktop. From the Start screen that appears, choose New.
    OnePager Express Start screen.
  3. Choose your Excel spreadsheet as the source file for your swimlane flowchart.
    OnePager Express source file selection.
  4. OnePager Express will launch an easy import wizard. Give your Excel flow chart a name and date as shown below:
    Easily import your Excel data into a swimlane flowchart.
  5. Click Next to double-check that the columns you import from Excel are the ones you want to use in your swimlane flow chart in PowerPoint:
    Easily import your Excel data into a swimlane flowchart.
  6. Click on the Create new project view to build a swimlane flowchart from the Excel spreadsheet:
    Swimlane flowchart created using OnePager Express.


Your swimlane PowerPoint flow chart draft already looks great, and is easy for everyone to understand. But if you want to make minor changes to the look and feel, it's easy to customize!

  1. To add a link between two items in your swimlane flow chart for PowerPoint, drag a box around the two tasks to highlight them. Then go to Insert > Event Link, as shown below.
    Link tasks together in your swimlane flowchart.
  2. Repeat the previous step until you've linked all of the deliverables in order like this:
    How to make a flowchart in PowerPoint from Excel data: This swimlane flowchart was created using OnePager Express, an Excel add-in, and easily exported to PowerPoint.
  3. Once you've finished editing your swimlane Excel flowchart, you can include it in a PowerPoint presentation or e-mail. Just go to Home > Copy, and paste your Excel flowchart into PowerPoint.

Now we've shown you how to make a swimlane flowchart in PowerPoint based on project data in Excel, using OnePager Express. No Visio licenses are required! Join the thousands of people just like you who use OnePager Express today to create swimlane flow charts in Excel and export them to PowerPoint.

Get started by downloading a free trial or attending one of our demonstration webinars, where we can show you how to make a flowchart in Excel with swimlanes, ready for PowerPoint, right over the phone.

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