Organizational Chart Form

An organizational chart form is a flowchart template. It is used to create a hierarchy of an organization. At the top of the hierarchy is the CEO or primary point of contact who oversees the organization. Then, the next square is used to provide the name and title of the person who reports directly to the highest ranking person. From there, the chart can branch out and list department or team managers. Each department or team manager may have their own sub-tree that details the names and titles of those who report directly to them. Although an organizational chart is used in a business setting, it can also be used in other settings as well, such as with a recreational sports league. 

What Is an Organizational Chart Template?

An organizational chart template is a form you can complete to document an organizational structure. That is, how individuals fit into a large organization. Of course, it can be used with a small organization, too. However, it is highly beneficial for larger organizations.

Also known as a company organizational chart, an organizational chart template provides you with a visual look at who is part of the organization and what they do. While there are standard ways to create and maintain this sort of document (such as creating and maintaining it in Excel, PowerPoint, or Microsoft Word; you could also invest in chart software), you can edit the document in a way that works best for your needs.

A business may have more than one organizational chart. There may be one for the entire company. There may also be smaller charts for different departments that denote the structure of a team or department. The chart structure ultimately depends on how the chart will be used.

Although businesses are the main users of this sort of document, it can also be used by a non-profit, a school, a club, a sports team, or any other group or organization that has a structure to it. Later on this page, you'll read about some organizational chart examples.

Why Do They Work So Well?

Creating org charts works well because it provides a visual look at the structure of a company. It may also include internal company extensions or cell phone numbers to make contacting members of the organization easier. This document is extremely helpful for new employees because they can get to know who works for the business and in what capacity. It’s helpful for managers because they have contact information for members of their department at the tip of their fingers. It can also provide managers with a broad overview of everyone in their department. That is incredibly helpful particularly if new positions were recently created within large corporations. If someone is on vacation, moves to another company, or is part of an inter-department transfer, it can help managers determine which tasks must be reassigned.

Do I Need One?

Whether you need an organization chart template depends, ultimately, on your business. If you run a large business, you may find that having one makes corporate life easier. In fact, you may want one for the entire company and then one for each department, such as customer service. Smaller businesses may not need one, but they may still find it helpful because it provides a glimpse at the set-up of the company.

What Are Some Reasons to Use a Free Organizational Chart?

You'll discover that these charts are good for more than just creating an overview of your business (whether it’s for the entire company or for specific departments...or both!). Some other benefits include:

  • You can use it to build your company structure in a way that meets the objective of your business.
  • Employees can see and understand the structure of the company. For example, consider the marketing department. The top level would be the manager or director of the department. Under this person, would be the first line of people that report to them. An example would be team leaders. For each leader, you would list the individuals who report to them.
  • You can use the chart to also track the functions or duties of each department.
  • You can see every member of the organization or arrange it to only show key employees.
  • If you list the responsibilities of each member of your organization, you can determine how duties are distributed and whether any particular person has too much work or not enough work.
  • It creates a visual chain of command.
  • It can be used to analyze the way each department works so that you can generate specific reports.

Since most people think that a sample organizational chart can only show a chain of command, let’s briefly discuss how the document can be used to evaluate the way that a company operates.

First, why would you want to evaluate how your business operates? The simple answer is to improve efficiency. This could be the overall efficiency of your business or for one or more departments.

You can also determine if there are any skill or duty gaps. You will also be able to see whether you have any employees within the business can fill those gaps, even if only temporarily. As mentioned earlier, you can also see how work is distributed. Then, you’re better able to redistribute the work if necessary, outsource certain tasks, or hire more staff.

Now, let’s examine how this org chart template can help you restructure. Restructuring isn’t just something a business does when it isn’t doing well. It is also something that you can do when business is going well. Restructuring when the business is doing well is more about continued or improved efficiency. You can see which positions best advance your company. What are those positions doing that contribute so much? Is there a way for you to make work life easier for those key individuals? Do you need to bring in additional help to continue to grow? If you need to bring additional help, will you need to hire or promote an existing staff member to the position of a manager? And, if you promote, will you need to hire someone to take over their previous responsibilities?

When to Not Use an Org Chart Template

An org chart template presents information in a visual way. Sometimes, though, it’s not the best choice. For example, you wouldn’t want to use one for budgets or all day-to-day operations because it is more about a broad overview and doesn’t necessarily include all of the details you need to make certain decisions.

You shouldn’t use one if you’re business uses a lot of temporary workers that come in and out of the business. This could make the org chart template hard for you to keep updated. Instead, you’d want to create a different document that tracks the current temporary workers, what they do, how to contact them, and when they leave the company.

If you have a large business, you may find it cumbersome to create a single chart. If you tried to track every department and every employee, the chart could become unwieldy and hard to manage and update. You could still use a chart, but you’d have to change the information that you put on it. Maybe you only list department heads. Maybe you have a chart with department heads and then each department head creates a smaller chart that lists each person that reports to them. If team leaders have big teams, they may benefit from creating their own.

Best Practices for Creating an Org Chart

The goal of creating an org chart is to provide information about how your company is structured. Yet, if it’s not easy to read and understand, the chart is worthless. Here are some best practices you can:

  • Make sure that you properly use colors and other design elements. Your chart must be easy to read and understand. Stick with tan, easy to read light yellows, and light blues.
  • You should use an easy to read font that is at least 10 points in size. You want the font large enough for people to be able to easily read the information. Don’t use cursive style fonts. Stick something professional and easy to read like Times New Roman, Courier, Arial, or Garamond.
  • Consider using colors only to highlight key positions, such as the CEO or managerial roles.
  • Don’t use too much color or too many colors.
  • Consider color coding positions. For example, all middle managers are denoted by a box that is tan and all department managers are denoted by a light blue box.

What to Consider After Completing Your Org Chart

So, you’ve finished your chart. Is that it? Well, not quite. There are some things you should do before you distribute the chart for use:

  • Make sure that you review your chart for errors. You should also make sure that you revise the  chart on a regular basis. Ensure that you have the proper contact information or extensions for each key member listed.
  • Your chart should fit on a single page. So, if you have a large organization, you may want to use legal sized paper. You may also want to make more than one chart if yours exceeds one page.
  • Consider how you’re going to print the chart. It’s generally best to print your chart as landscape.
  • Think about the look of your chart. Is it easy to read? Is it too crowded? Do you need to change some of the components to make it look or read better?
  • Choose and use a consistent design. All of your boxes should be the same size unless the box lists more than one person. For example, if you have a box that is titled “Middle Management” and it lists four people, it will be a different size than a box that lists only one or two people.
  • Remember to include any assistants or administrative staff with their managers as a sidebar.
  • Double check that you’ve listed the titles of individuals before any names. Most people may look to locate a specific position and not a name.
  • Would your company benefit from a PDF version that they can access from an internal drive?

Sample Organizational Chart

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Sample Organizational Chart

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