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Chart Your Organization

By Yardena Arar HumanConcepts' market-leading OrgPlus has long been one of the most intuitive and powerful tools for producing organizational charts. And the newest version, OrgPlus 4 Professional, is more Web-friendly than ever: Not only can you easily publish a chart to the Internet or a corporate intranet, but your colleagues can manipulate it. Using a Web browser (Netscape 4 or IE 4 or later), they can zoom in and out, print selected branches, or even export the chart back to an OrgPlus file.

Longtime users of Microsoft Office may know OrgPlus; Microsoft licensed earlier versions to add organizational chart-making capabilities to its flagship productivity suite. While the basic tools still exist in Office, OrgPlus 4 Professional offers many extras.

In addition to the Web publishing features, the program lets you turn a chart into a PowerPoint slide or a Word booklet with a table of contents. You can automatically generate charts from data in Excel, text, or even XML format. The software offers more than 20 templates with different backgrounds, colors, and layout styles to make your chart look more professional. You can even split off a portion of your chart and link it to the original chart, making it easy to move between the two.

In my tests with a shipping version of OrgPlus 4 Professional, I was able to create a small org chart and publish it to the Web in less than half an hour--all without having to spend much time with the very complete manual. But at $495, this product is only for companies that are serious about charting. If you don't need the new publishing and data import tools, OrgPlus 4 Standard offers much of the basic capability for $190. From the May 2002 issue of PC World magazine

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