Schedule Time & Gather Materials
- Time Needed: 4 Hours
- Flowchart software
Carry Out This Method
- List the tasks and the order in which they must be performed.
- Create a diagram with roles assigned to swim lanes.
- Assign the tasks to the designated swim lane role. (A box with a description, a triangle for decisions. Shapes of the boxes can convey activity. Label appropriately.)
- Illustrate the task flow with arrows connecting the task shapes. (This is the classic boxes-and-arrows technique used by information architects.)
- Review with stakeholders. Ask if the diagram is accurate.
- Identify inefficiencies or gaps.
- Clarify responsibilities as necessary.
Try These Tips
- Confusion as to who is responsible for a task is common. Make sure it is clear.
- A companion to swim lane diagrams is a RACI matrix (Responsible, Accountable, Consulted, Informed). Particularly at large companies, completing a task is only part of an additional internal decision-sharing process that the designer needs to be aware of. Consider creating a project-level RACI matrix at the beginning of a project.
Explore More Resources
- Luke Wroblewski: CanUX: UX Swimlanes
- Integrated Computer Solutions, Inc: Workflow Analysis, Swim Lanes and UX
- SAP User Experience Community: Swimlane diagram – a great tool for alignment and process planning
- Wikipedia: Responsibility assignment matrix