Gliffy vs. Cmap

For this exercise, I updated a flowchart that I had originally created using Cmap for an MET course I completed this past summer.  Please click here to view my flowchart.

I have created flowcharts in the past using Visio, Vue and Cmap.  When I was an auditor, I created process documentation using Visio, and I have used Vue and Cmap to create flowcharts for other MET courses.  I was not aware of the existence of Gliffy until this exercise.   I have summarized what I consider to be the pros and cons of the application below.


  • Auto save feature
  • Easy to move individual shapes and/or the entire diagram to another location within the “page”
  • Grid system ensures that shapes and text are lined up (no more eyeballing)
  • Portability – The flowchart can be accessed from anywhere.  With Cmap and Vue, I had to download the application on my computer before I could use it.
  • Collaboration – Standard and pro packages allow multiple users
  • Ability to export as svg, Gliffy XML, JPEG or PNG file
  • Can print the flowchart
  • Easy to use
  • Lots of shapes from which to choose


  • No spell check utility
  • Cost – The free plan only permits 5 flowcharts to be created and there is no ability to collaborate.  The standard plan is $4.95/user per month and allows 200 diagrams and unlimited collaboration.  The pro plan is $9.95/user per month and permits unlimited diagrams and collaboration.

I was very impressed with how easy it was to learn how to use the application.  The process went much faster than it did when I originally created the flowchart in Cmap.  I would definitely consider using Gliffy again in the future if I needed to create a flowchart.


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