Top 5 Balanced Scorecard Software

To have a balanced view of their performance and assess their effectiveness, companies need to look at both financial and non-financial measures, along with their short- and long-term goals. One of the best ways to do this is by using a balanced scorecard, which needs to be regularly tracked with the help of an appropriate tool.

Since there is a variety of related options out there, choosing the right fit for your organization can be a real challenge. To help you make an informed decision, we have put together a list of selection criteria and the best 5 examples on the market.


Best Balanced Scorecard Software

Why Are Balanced Scorecards Important?

When it comes to defining what optimal business performance means and determining whether a company’s management is achieving the desired results, nothing works better than a balanced scorecard.

Translating an organization’s mission and values into a comprehensive set of actionable steps set to propel it into success, a balanced scorecard acts as an effective strategy planning and management framework.

To successfully build and implement a balanced scorecard, managers need to:

  • Articulate the business’s vision and strategy;
  • Identify the performance categories that best link a company’s strategic plans and various internal functions to their external outcomes;
  • Outline objectives that support the company’s vision and strategy;
  • Develop relevant standards to be observed in order to accomplish short-term and long-term milestones;
  • Ensure enterprise-wide acceptance of the measures;
  • Collect and analyze performance data and compare actual results with desired thresholds;
  • Create appropriate budgeting, tracking and communication systems;
  • Take corrective action to close unfavorable gaps.

Once a balanced scorecard is created, it is generally used to:

  • Update, clarify and enhance a company’s strategy;
  • Correlate strategic objectives with long-term targets and annual budgets;
  • Track the essential elements of the business strategy;
  • Incorporate strategic measures into the process of allocating resources;
  • Usher and facilitate organizational change;
  • Compare performance of geographically diverse business units;
  • Increase the understanding of the corporate vision and strategy at a company-wide level.

Given the many important purposes that a balanced scorecard can serve, it is critical for companies to regularly monitor and update it. By doing so, they can benefit from a constant feedback mechanism that lays down a clear direction towards achieving their goals. To get the best results, using a dedicated application to manage your balanced scorecard is recommended.

How to Choose the Best Balanced Scorecard Software for Your Organization

To decide which balanced scorecard option is the most appropriate for your business, the following attributes may serve as useful selection criteria:

  • Easy to use – you don’t want to settle for software that is too complicated for your team to use as it can result in frustration and poor results. A good scorecard application should be easy to learn and manage, intuitive, and coming with clear guidelines on how to operate it. Training and how-to support materials are a bonus.
  • Easy to customize – each organization has its own unique goals and strategies and, as a result, there are different balanced scorecards that can be used for different profiles. Hence, you should go for a system that allows customization to meet your specific needs. Software solutions that come with a free trial are preferable because you can thus run a test before purchasing and determine whether it is a good investment or not.
  • Strategy map features – a quality balanced scorecard tool can create strategy maps of your BSC from different perspectives. It should let the user perform various tasks (adding logos, drawing arrows between objectives, moving and resizing objects on the graphic).
  • Visualization of organizational structure – your BSC-specific program should include powerful visualizations of organizational structure and strategy to allow you to communicate the relationship between the organization’s key performance indicators and objectives.
  • Dashboards – with dashboards, users can see the big picture at a glance, add live data in the form of images, graphs and text, monitor their critical data and drill down for more details on performance trends.
  • Annotation, attachments, and collaboration – these features will allow users to engage in discussions on certain items and make the information available from the different visualizations.
  • Reporting features – a good BSC tool should be able to generate figures, charts and relevant analysis so you can get both qualitative and quantitative reports for your company.
  • Export capabilities – the system of your choice should allow you to export data into a clear and organized manner (either in Excel, PowerPoint or .pdf format).
  • Automation and integration – many organizations want to adopt a BSC platform mainly to save time and efforts. Thus, look for software with features that can speed up processes (such as easy data entry and upload) and which integrates with other programs in place within your company.
  • Access rights – ensure that your system is able to limit the users’ access based on their rights and responsibilities so they can focus only on what they are supposed to view and work on.

Your Ultimate Balanced Scorecard Software List

Based on the key features outlined above, we’ve created a top of the most popular strategy planning solutions that you can use for managing your scorecard. Here they are:

  1. Sisense
  2. Office Timeline
  3. Corporater
  4. ClearPoint Strategy
  5. QuickStore

Let’s now take a closer look at each of these balanced scorecard tools.


1. Sisense

Powered by In-Chip and Stack technologies, Sisense enables even the most non-technical users to access data and build interactive dashboards and business intelligence reports. Providing a single, out-of-the-box interface to process and visualize large sets of variables without IT resources, it simplifies business analysis for complex data. You can use its drag-and-drop feature, one-click formulas and diverse range of dashboard widgets (geographical maps, line charts, scatter plots, gauges and pie charts) to measure KPIs, determine trends, highlight correlations, compare and pinpoint the best representation of your input.

Feature Overview:

  • Joining data from multiple sources;
  • Drag & drop joining of multiple data sources;
  • Creation and sharing of interactive dashboards;
  • Capability to query data in real time;
  • Offers a wide range of deployment options;
  • Access right control;
  • Demo available;
  • Custom pricing based on your business’s profile.

Sisense Scorecard Software

2. Office Timeline

Available as both a desktop add-in (Office Timeline) and online application (Office Timeline Online), it is a user-friendly, ready-to-use tool that helps users to create a variety of strategy management visuals as presentation-ready, native PowerPoint slides. Featuring a diverse gallery of pre-designed templates, an intuitive drag&drop interface and smart layout engine that automatically generates representations of your data, the software is ideal for non-technical users.

Feature Overview:

  • Easy data import functionality and pre-built templates to set you up faster;
  • Rich data management and customization functionalities (task/milestone creation and assigning capabilities, shapes, colors, percentage complete and status indicators for progress tracking, same-row and swimlane grouping of activities);
  • Integration with Excel, MS Project, Smartsheet and Wrike;
  • Flexible export capabilities (as Excel files, PowerPoint slides and PNG images);
  • Share & Collaboration functionality and data access rights option to allow multi-party editing on the same visual with no need for registration;
  • Fully-functional freemium model for both versions (desktop add-in users limited to 10 rows of data; visuals generated with the web-based app being watermarked if the 10-row limit is exceeded);
  • Price: the Office Timeline Online paid plan costs $59/year; the Office Timeline PowerPoint add-in Pro edition costs $99/year with a 14-day free trial available as well.

Office Timeline Scorecard Software

3. Corporater

Providing a business management platform that includes all the core elements related to a BSC and which adapts to the user’s unique business model, Corporater empowers medium and large companies to assess, manage and continuously improve their performance. With functions and capabilities that allow you to link multiple management disciplines (compliance, strategy, risk, operations, finance, HR and others), Corporater’s interface lets you create custom management solutions for strategy, KPIs, performance and business dashboards.

Feature Overview:

  • Balanced scorecard and XPP model;
  • Easy-to-use strategy map designer;
  • Perspectives and strategic objectives components;
  • Cascading of strategy and alignment;
  • Data source integrations;
  • Annotations;
  • Goal management functions;
  • Progress tracking features;
  • Pricing quote on request.

Corporater Scorecard Software


4. ClearPoint Strategy

ClearPoint is a strategy execution tool that lets professionals easily manage objectives, measures, initiatives and action items in one place. Its users are able to create and customize a single scorecard or multiple cascading scorecards, as well as to automatically generate and distribute a variety of reports. With features to link and align goals and KPIs and to integrate data from different sources, ClearPoint makes it simple for you to execute on your strategic plan.

Feature Overview:

  • Scorecard and dashboard creation, updating and customization options;
  • Data integration from multiple sources;
  • Automation engine;
  • Reporting capabilities;
  • Notification system;
  • Objective, initiative, measure and action item management functions;
  • On-page editing;
  • Integrated help and tooltips;
  • Demo available on request;
  • Prices ranging from $250/month (Basic Plan) to $800/month (Professional Plan).

ClearPoint Strategy Scorecard Software


5. QuickScore

QuickScore is a flexible cloud-based strategy and KPI management tool that allows companies, organizations and government agencies to user their own strategic model, whether that is the BSC, the Ansoff Matrix, the Strategic Horizons or an in-house strategic process. Officially recommended by the Balanced Scorecard Institute, it automates your BSC once you enter your perspectives, objectives and measures.

Feature Overview:

  • Automatically generated scorecards and strategy maps based on data entry;
  • Color-coded customization and update options for objectives, initiatives, KPIs;
  • Live dashboard sharing with non-registered parties;
  • Linked actions and cascading scorecards;
  • Goal tracking function;
  • Drill-down capabilities;
  • Search widget and alerts system;
  • Product tour available and live demo offered upon appointment;
  • Price: $95/month per user (payable quarterly or annually; one month free for the latter payment plan).

QuickScore Scorecard Software


Conclusion

Effectively creating and managing your balanced scorecard heavily depends on the software that you use for this particular purpose. We hope that the options outlined in this blog post will guide you towards choosing the most suitable solution for you.


Balanced Scorecard Software Overview


Software Key benefit
Price Free trial
1. Sisense Simplifies business analysis for complex data Custom pricing on request Test drive available
2. Office Timeline Creates strategy management visuals as native PowerPoint slides From $59/year Both 14-day free trial and freemium versions available with no obligations
3. Corporater Links multiple management disciplines Pricing quote on request On request
4. ClearPoint Strategy Integrates data from different sources From $250/month Free 15-day trial conditioned by a demo
5. QuickScore Automatically generates scorecards and strategy maps $95/month per user Test drive available



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Top 10 Swimlane Software for Project Management

Best Swimlane Software

What are swimlanes in project management?

Swimlane diagrams are an excellent tool for visually organizing a complex project. They achieve this by grouping specific tasks, milestones, business processes and other elements together into “lanes” divided by parallel lines, hence the association with the world of swimming competitions.

Generally, a swimlane diagram will define the employee or department handling certain tasks, the stage of the project when a task should be handled, etc. In the context of visuals illustrating a workflow or processes, you might also find them under the name of cross-functional flowcharts.

Types of swimlane diagrams

Swimlanes can be added to virtually any type of project visual, providing of course that the categories make sense to the PM and are useful in decluttering the layout of the graph. For the sake of simplicity, we have decided to split the applications in three major categories:

At the same time, this post is dedicated to tools that are primarily designed for the purpose of transforming data into visual representations. Find out how to create a timeline in Excel or if you want to learn how to make a Gantt chart in PowerPoint, check out our additional resources.

Related guides:

Let’s now take a closer look at some of the most popular project management solutions that can integrate swimlanes in their repertoire of visualization tools.


  Top 10 swimlane software for project management shortlist:

  Here are the best tools for creating swimlane diagrams:

  1. Kanbanize
  2. Planview
  3. Zenkit
  4. Office Timeline
  5. Monday
  6. Toggl Plan
  7. OnePager
  8. Visio
  9. Lucidchart
  10. Gliffy

Kanban boards

One of the best-known strategies in agile project management for limiting the number of simultaneous tasks and prioritizing them in order to maximize efficiency are Kanban boards. Swimlanes are inherent to their design. The system quickly earned adepts in software development and this helped it make the transition from physical to digital. Before we get started with the apps in this category, here’s a Kanban board example to better illustrate the concept:

Kanband board

Let’s find out who’s on our list!


1. Kanbanize

The company behind Kanbanize, Businessmap LTD, was founded back in 2008 and their vision is aligned with modern corporate values such as scalability, collaboration and automation. The flexibility of the application allows it to easily adapt to any industry’s requirements. This claim is supported by their diversified clientele that includes Bose, GoDaddy, Epic Games, Mozilla and Arsenal FC.

Swimlane made with Kanbanize

The agile project management software features comprehensive boards that can be updated at any point, permissions that can be defined and customized, event triggers, email integration, analytics and time-tracking capabilities. Kanbanize simplifies the job of PMs working with multiple teams via the Management Workspace, which permits distributing and tracking work across multiple projects from a single interface.

With respect to users’ feedback, Kanbanize could be improved by adding integration with external apps and better options for card finding, particularly in environments with numerous pages.


2. Planview Enterprise One

Planview’s mission is to make the transition from strategy to delivery across organizations as painless as possible. In other words, their application is designed to translate high-level objectives into very specific, achievable and actionable steps and deliver strategic initiatives. With tools like roadmaps, Planview bridges the gap between the resources and projects. Vertical swimlanes are used to categorize the cards in each sub-section of the Kanban board for more visibility.

Swimlane made with Planview

What’s more, it also includes analytics and enables you to create presumptive scenarios, then compare outcomes and determine the best course of action investment-wise.

For Planview Enterprise one, the complexity can also be perceived as a setback, because it steepens the learning curve. When the Kanban board grows, the numerous configurable columns on the swimlanes become a bit intimidating, particularly when users lack an extensive experience.


3. Zenkit

Synergy is the word of the day with this Kanban project management tool. Like the popular TV series character Dirk Gently, the team behind Zenkit believes that ‘everything is connected’, and they apply this principle in terms of tasks, client data, business documentation, etc. Their belief is best illustrated by their import feature, and API that seamlessly integrates with thousands of other apps to bring in external data, hassle free.

Swimlane made with Zenkit

Designed primarily as a Kanban board, Zenkit also has the ability to create Gantt charts and timelines, when this type of visualization would facilitate understanding the project’s next steps. Checklists and to-do lists with flexible labels, collaboration, formulas, offline mode and mobile versions are part of their arsenal as well.

The app does struggle a bit with larger teams, particularly in the free version: there have been some reports of lag and general slowness in this respect.


Timeline and Gantt charts

Gantt charts and timelines are the ideal visualization tools for illustrating the tasks and milestones of a project against the backdrop of timeband, because they allow users to frame everything in context. Swimlanes are not native to them. In fact, here’s a Gantt chart example without swimlanes:

Gantt chart

However, much like adding chocolate sprinkles on icecream, swimlanes give Gantt charts and timelines extra flavour. A swimlane diagram is considerably easier to organize and understand the more tasks and milestones you have. Check out this swimlane diagram example:

Swimlane diagram

Gantt charts and roadmaps created as swimlane diagrams are quite popular in project management because they are extremely visual. Task, for instance are depicted as bars with lengths varying according to their individual duration, permitting you to figure out how all the puzzle pieces fit together. Whenever you’re fleshing out a project, these graphs make the planning and execution less convoluted. Let’s check out the contestants.


4. Office Timeline

A timeline and Gantt chart maker tool developed to synergize with PowerPoint and leverage the functionalities of the popular presentation software, Office Timeline is available as an add-in for it and a standalone, browser-based version. Ease of use, an extensive line of beautifully designed swimlane templates, an intuitive interface and the absence of any serious learning curve are the key points that recommend this application for non tech savvy users in the PM field.

Swimlane made with Office Timeline

Furthermore, the PowerPoint integration allows you to create the Gantt charts and roadmaps with the same software you will use to hold the presentation to your stakeholders, saving time and resources. Office Timeline is compatible with other frequently used project management apps like Excel, Smartsheet, Wrike and even MS Project, so you can import data and sync changes to the source file.

Office Timeline templates

Office Timeline currently only produces Gantt charts, timelines and roadmaps with swimlanes, but the application is in continuous development and extra features as well as new templates are being added all the time.


5. Monday

It may not be anyone’s favorite day of the week, but it’s definitely a cloud-based project management software worth checking out. Monday relies on a unique style of color and placement to organize and manage teams. Color coding isn’t by any means new or groundbreaking. However, Monday makes good use of it to convey information like who’s assigned to a task, due dates, statuses and progress in general.

Swimlane made with Monday

At its core, Monday is not exactly a Gantt chart maker, but it can become one by adding the Timeline widget to the dashboard. Monday also shines in terms of assigning specific tasks to team members, Then, via the Timeline view mode, you can access a comprehensive overview of all projects.

The main challenges of this project management software come from the per-user pricing limitations, limited mobile app capabilities and difficulties with expense and time tracking.


6. Toggl Plan

Similarly to Office Timeline, Toggl Plan is a PM tool designed with simplicity and ease of use in mind. New users will appreciate the fact that its interface doesn’t overwhelm you from the start with a plethora of complex features and settings. The philosophy behind this planner is that micro-management stifles creativity and should be avoided, which is why Toggle is geared towards creating swimlane diagrams as high level overviews, like the one below.

Swimlane made with Toggl Plan

However, this is where the similarities between the two Gantt chart makers end. Toggle Plan is not as design focused and the way visual elements are illustrated border on spartan minimalism, but it does include Kanban Board capabilities and to-do lists.

According to most users, more integrations with external apps and a simplification and the addition of an invoicing system are the main grow points for the Toggl app.


7. OnePager

This application also has something in common with Office Timeline: it is designed as an add-in for a popular Microsoft application, namely Microsoft Project. By taking the task-level data from Project, it can export multiple phases or a complete, simplified schedule as a Gantt chart or timeline, with or without the swimlanes.

Swimlane made with OnePager

Those of your who worked with Microsoft Project before are painfully aware of the tool’s complexity and the lack of simple visual customizations available. OnePager aims to change that by transforming the project schedules into swimlane diagrams focused on the audience, and that can be edited with ease, while preserving the integrity of the original data. Bonus, this project management app also allows exporting the results as Gantt charts with swimlanes in PowerPoint slides.

Now, on the downside, Microsoft Project is a pretty great application, but it’s not always the best option, especially if you’re going for a high-level overview. Therefore, OnePager’s limitation comes from the platform this Gantt chart maker was built on.


Flowchart makers

Flowchart diagrams can be used to represent an operation or a process visually, and rely on logical steps. This is why, in addition to project management and the development of business plans, another practical use for them is the design of mathematical algorithms. They can have just a few steps or can grow to be incredibly complex, which is when you can introduce swimlanes to organize them more easily. Here’s a swimlane diagram example of what a flowchart might look like:

Flowchart example

Now, onto the apps!


8. Microsoft Visio

Visio is often listed as the go-to application for flowchart design, thanks to the wide variety of diagrams it can produce. Featuring templates for networking, floor plans, data processes and much more, this Microsoft application is part of the Office 365 package. However, according to users, that can be a double-edged sword because you don’t always know what version you’re going to get; it really depends on the type O365 package you purchase.

Swimlane made with Visio

In addition to the templates, Visio also includes an extensive shape and stencil library, which make it a great interdisciplinary tool. Another plus for Visio is that it’s very easy to showcase the relationship between multiple elements on the flowchart without cluttering the visuals too much. Because it’s part of the Microsoft suite, it also boasts integration with other applications like Excel or Access, allowing you to pull data directly from the databases.

What most users struggle with are the publishing and sharing of the flowchart diagrams, and the lack of a browser-based or Mac/Linux version.


9. Lucidchart

According to some users, Lucidchart is a far superior flowchart maker compared to Visio from several standpoints, but the one most often noted is the ease of use. We have to agree here. From the first steps you’ll notice that the learning curve is virtually non-existent and the interface – in Lucidchart’s case a web app – is very intuitive. Bonus points for having an offline mode in spite of this.

Swimlane made with Lucidchart

Lucidchart can produce cross-functional flowchart diagrams to keep even complex plans nice and tidy. On the same note, it allows working on separate layers and containers, for easy categorization. Once you’re done, you can use the Presentation mode to showcase the work, but you can also publish it or share it as an URL.

There aren’t many complaints around Lucidchart as a whole. One of the things users would like to see in future updates are the ability to auto-expire links. Some tweaks around the snap-to-grid which is thrown out of balance when the canvas size changes would also be welcome.


10. Gliffy

Are you looking for a solution that allows you to quickly draw a swimlane flowchart without installing a single thing? There are moments when speed, ease of use and simplicity trump all other factors, and that’s exactly Gliffy’s time to shine. This application also seamlessly integrates with popular platforms such as Slack, Trello, Confluence, WordPress, G Suite and many others. Collaboration and templates for all the basic styles of flowchart diagrams are what Gliffy excels at.

Swimlane made with Gliffy

Speaking of basics, there’s only a handful of formats supported for exporting your newly drawn swimlane diagrams (JPG, PNG, SVG, and Gliffy), but on the other hand they are the most frequently used. Lastly, it’s worth mentioning that this flowchart creator is by far one of the most inexpensive alternatives around, although most users describe the available plans as slightly awkward.

There’s scope to grow for Gliffy, and it’s by no means as comprehensive as Lucidchart or Visio.


Conclusion

Before picking a project management software with swimlane capabilities, it’s advisable to determine what type of diagram would work best with your organizing style and context. The list here is by no means exhaustive; let us know what your favorite application is in the comments!

If you favor timelines and Gantt charts, check out this blog post for a list of the best Gantt chart apps on the market that are worth exploring.


Best Swimlane Software for Project Management Overview


Rank Type
Software Description
1 Kanban Board Kanbanize An agile project management tool with time tracking, email integration, automated events and analytics
2 Kanban board Planview Enterprise One A complex and comprehensive Kanban Board for designed for actionable plans capable of analytics and what-if scenarios.
3 Kanban board Zenkit A simple but powerful PM tool that leverages synergies and integrates with many external platforms.
4 Gantt chart & Timeline maker Office Timeline An intuitive and easy to use timeline, Gantt chart and roadmap maker that relies on beautiful, professionally designed templates, aimed at the less tech-savvy user groups in PM.
5 Gantt chart & Timeline maker Monday A more complex application that leverages color coding to simplify the project overview.
6 Gantt chart & Timeline maker Toggl Plan An easy to use timeline maker with minimalist graphics.
7 Gantt chart & Timeline maker OnePager A Microsoft Project add-in that can render easily editable Gantt charts based on the source file data.
8 Flowchart maker Visio Microsoft’s flowchart creator that boasts extensive templates, shapes and customization options.
9 Flowchart maker Lucidchart A simpler and easier to use alternative to Microsoft’s Visio.
10 Flowchart maker Gliffy Out-of-the box minimalistic flowchart maker with no installation required.


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US Independence Day Timeline

US Independence Day Timeline

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Officially designated as a federal holiday in 1941, the Fourth of July – or Independence Day – celebrates the turning point in US history when American delegates of the 13 colonies voted to cast off the shackles of the British Empire. The vision shared by the founding fathers took shape in the form of the Declaration of Independence, a document drafted by none other than Thomas Jefferson on July 2nd 1776 and adopted by the Continental Congress two days later. The very first celebration of Independence Day happened on the 8th of July on the same year, although the final signature would not be put on the document until the 2nd of August.

In honor of this historic moment, we have created the Independence Day Timeline, which aims to shed a bit of light on the political and socio-economic context that prompted the colonists’ decision. As a bonus, we have also included a second timeline in the PowerPoint file, which marks the settling of the very first colonies on American soil.

US Colonies Timeline

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Happy 4th of July!

"Taxation without representation"

Full-out war with the British and emancipation from the Empire’s rule came after years of oppression and ever-growing taxes imposed on the colonies. One such tax is the 1765 Stamp Act, which the British Parliament passed in an attempt to counterbalance the massive debt left in the wake of the war with the French. The Stamp Act was followed two years later, in 1767, by a series of taxes – the Townshend Acts – passed between June and July, on goods imported from Britain.

Growing tensions between the colonists and the British culminated with the infamous Boston massacre from 1770, when soldiers opened fire on a crowd of Boston citizens taunting them. The Brits eventually decided to withdraw their army before the conflict escalated. However, just 3 years later, in 1773, Britain passed the Tea Act, designed to help the now struggling East India Company, whose majority stakeholders were members of the British Parliament. The radicalized part of the colonists – the Sons of Liberty – responded by donning Mohawk disguises, boarding three of Britain’s ships docked in Boston Harbor and destroying over 90 thousand pounds of tea.

Naturally, the Brits weren’t at all happy with the developments and, in 1774, attempted to declaw the rebellious youth by passing a set of laws that fall under the moniker of Coercive Acts. What were the Coercive Acts? For one thing, Boston Harbor would remain closed until the colonies could pay for the damages caused by the Sons of Liberty. Furthermore, the British military governor Thomas Gage was given full executive power in the colonies and no town meeting could be held without his direct approval. Finally, all British army officials could request their troops to be accommodated in uninhabited houses and buildings. We are now standing on the precipice of war and a single spark can set off the powder.

"The British are coming! The British are coming!"

Thomas Gage is tasked with leading a small force to the town of Lexington, where he plans to capture John Hancock and Samuel Adams – two of the radicalized leaders – in one fell swoop, as well as seize their gunpowder. But things don’t exactly go as planned: they’re behind enemy lines with American spies all around. Upon descending into Lexington, the British force is met with a hail of lead fired by the 77-men Yankee militia force. It ends in disaster for the Brits: 73 casualties, 174 wounded and 25 MIA. The colonists lose only 7 people to this skirmish and continue to harass the retreating force all the way to Boston.

Meanwhile, legendary rider Paul Revere and others travel from town to town, warning the Americans about the impending invasion, and troops are being rallied. Unfortunately, not everyone is on board with waging war against the British Empire, particularly the southerners who had no love for the Yankees. The bombardment and sacking of Falmouth, Massachusetts by the Brits would eventually change their mind, as the leaders of the rebellion use this brutal action to band the colonists together.

"I have not yet begun to fight!"

The Siege of Yorktown by the allied forces of the Yankees under the command of George Washington and the French army led by Rochambeau is one of the decisive victories in the war for independence. The British general Cornwallis and 7,000 of his soldiers surrender on October 19, 1781. A few isolated land skirmishes continue for a while, while the main battles are carried out at sea between England and American allies – among which we now count the Dutch and Spanish forces.

A preliminary Anglo-American Peace treaty is signed in 1782 and a more comprehensive version of it – the Treaty of Paris – in 1783. The terms of the treaty state that Britain recognizes the independence of the US and a massive portion of the territory on the continent now belongs to the Yankees. It’s the dawn of a new day for the Americans, who have forged their legacy in blood, grit and sacrifice.

About the Independence Day Timeline

The Independence Day and US Colonies timelines were created with Office Timeline and are available to download as fully customizable PowerPoint slides. Office Timeline is an intuitive and versatile PowerPoint add-in that can help you create beautiful graphics like roadmaps, swimlane diagrams or Gantt charts within minutes. Download the Pro Edition and find out how quick and easy it is or try out the free version for less complex applications.



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History of Vaccines Timeline

History of Vaccines Timeline

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Although the world’s first vaccine (against smallpox) was developed by the English physician Edward Jenner in 1796, the practice of immunisation goes back to an earlier time in the Eastern world. Drinking snake venom to confer immunity to snake bites and smearing a skin tear with cowpox to gain immunity against smallpox were practiced among the Buddhist monks of the 17th century China.

Since Jenner’s critical discovery and up until the late 1950s, all the vaccines implemented throughout this time span were developed at a fairly slow rate. It was the new scientific discoveries and technologies of the last several decades that led to a more rapid advance in molecular biology, virology and vaccinology.

To overview some of the most relevant vaccination-related facts, we have created this blog post, which also includes the History of Vaccines Timeline - a visual chronology of the main prophylactic vaccines developed since Edward Jenner’s breakthrough.

What are vaccines and how do they work?

A vaccine is a biological substance produced to ensure active acquired immunity to a certain infectious disease. Typically prepared from the causative agent of that disease (the weakened forms of the microbe, its toxins or surface proteins), a vaccine ”trains” our immune system to recognize and destroy the harmful agent and any of its associated microorganisms. The administration of vaccines is called vaccination.

There are two types of vaccines:

  • Prophylactic (preventing and ameliorating the effects of a future infection);
  • Therapeutic (fighting a disease that has already occurred).

Where do the words „vaccine” and „vaccination” come from?

Both terms were coined by Edward Jenner and derived from the name that he used to refer to cowpox, that is Variolae vaccinae (which means „smallpox of the cow” in Latin). Jenner’s terminology first appeared in his 1798’s Inquiry into the Variolae Vaccinae Known as the Cow Pox, a study that documents the protective action of cowpox against smallpox. In 1881, as an homage to Jenner’s work, Louis Pasteur proposed that these two be extended to cover all the new inoculations that were being developed at the time.

How it all began

While serving as a surgeon/apothecary appretince (sometime during the late 1760s), Edward Jenner found out that some of the dairy workers in the rural areas never contracted the often-fatal smallpox disease because they had already caught cowpox, which manifested with milder effects in humans. He thus proceeded to collect pus from a cowpox-infected milkmaid and administer it to an 8-year-old boy.

Six weeks later, Jenner inoculated the boy with smallpox and observed that he didn’t contract the disease. This small victory encouraged the physician to extend his studies, which resulted in a report that proved his vaccine was safe in both children and adults.

Vaccination becomes widespread 

After Jenner’s breakthrough, it was Louis Pasteur that carried the torch and made headway in immunization by introducing vaccines for chicken cholera and anthrax in the 1880s. Due to these advances, vaccination gained attention and became a matter of national prestige, with compulsory vaccination laws being passed in the late 19th century.

During the 20th century, several successful vaccines were introduced (against diphtheria, measles, mumps and rubella), but the major highlight resulted from the development of the polio vaccine (the 1950s) and the eradication of smallpox (1960s – 1970s).

About the History of Vaccines Timeline

The History of Vaccines Timeline was designed with Office Timeline, an intuitive add-in that enables you to easily create compelling timelines, Gantt charts and other types of chronology graphics right inside PowerPoint. You can download the History of Vaccines Timeline PowerPoint slide for free, copy and share it, and you can update or customize it using the Pro Edition of the tool.



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Top free timeline templates for your business continuity planning

When a crisis or disaster threatens to flip your whole world upside down, it’s hard to know how to respond. Luckily, more and more organizations across the globe are discovering just how important it really is to have a business continuity management system that helps you adapt quickly and keep your business running in times of uncertainty.

If your organization doesn’t have any risk management or contingency plan, the good news is that it’s never too late to start. “Failing to plan is planning to fail,” Benjamin Franklin reportedly said, so any time is a good time to start planning your crisis response. On this page you’ll find guidelines, basic information, but also some useful resources and templates to help you build your organization’s resilience in the face of stress.

What is a business continuity plan and why you should have one

A business continuity plan is a document (or collection of documents) that explains what the organization and the employees are supposed to do in case of disruption. It identifies the major risks that can affect day-to-day operation and establishes clear procedures on how to keep the business running during an emergency – which can range from a global pandemic to more common incidents like flooding after a storm or an internet outage.

After being presented to upper management and other stakeholders to get their agreement, the business continuity plan is communicated to all the employees, but also regularly tested and improved. This continuous review process is part of what is called business continuity management system and, in case of emergency, it’s what makes the difference between a company’s survival and sudden death.

Every organization, big or small, public or private, should have at least a basic contingency plan. No company is completely safe from a disaster, so make sure you are always prepared. Business continuity planning is not a nice-to-have, it’s a must.

Benefits of including a timeline in your contingency plan

When it comes to presenting your business continuity plan to your executives, clients or team, efficiency is key. Nobody wants to be stuck in an endless meeting where you read off a bullet-heavy PowerPoint slide or browse dozens of pages. Time is essential, both in meetings and in disaster recovery. And when plans change, as they often do, you need a quick and easy way to update them.

That is why we recommend creating a timeline or Gantt chart for your presentation, to better illustrate the series of events and your planned response by minute, day or month. Here are three clear benefits of including a timeline when you present your business continuity plan to your stakeholders:

  1. Timelines – especially the ones that feature swimlanes – can effectively portray the different phases, tasks or milestones that make up a process. In the case of business continuity, it can show, on one slide, a snapshot of your plan, with just the right amount of detail.
  2. When you represent it visually, the information included on the timeline is better absorbed by the brain. You need all your stakeholders to understand and agree on the business continuity plan, and a timeline or Gantt chart can help you make your point clear.
  3. You can save hours of work preparing for your meeting, since you only need to create one good slide to present your plan. And if you use a timeline or Gantt chart template like the ones we’re about to show you, it will make your work significantly easier.

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Best PowerPoint timeline templates for business continuity management

Whether you want to create a timeline for your business continuity meeting or to review an incident with the upper management, using templates can give you a head start. So, we’ve made a list of the best PowerPoint templates for roadmaps and timelines to get your business continuity management system in shape:

  1. Business Continuity Plan
  2. Crisis Management Timeline
  3. Incident Response Timeline

1. Business Continuity Plan


  • Designed as a swimlane diagram that outlines the major components of a business continuity plan, from business impact analysis to disaster recovery.
  • It’s useful when you present your contingency plans to your stakeholders so they gain a better view of your risk management strategy.
  • This business continuity plan example is a PowerPoint file, so you easily include it as a slide in your presentation or save it as an image on your company portal.
  • You can download it for free and use the Office Timeline add-in to adjust the generic categories or include data that is specific to your organization.

Business Continuity Plan

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2. Crisis Management Timeline


  • Created to help you get over the initial panic (which is natural) and guide you on your road to resuming your business activity.
  • Covers the entire crisis management process, from when the crisis occurs to response, business continuity process, recovery, and review.
  • It’s an effective, free PowerPoint tool to help you prepare for any crisis, regardless of nature, industry, or duration.
  • The crisis management timeline was made with the Office Timeline PowerPoint add-in and it’s easy to customize it to suit your business, industry or include your branding styles.

Crisis Management Timeline

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3. Incident Response Timeline


  • Built on a shorter timeframe (hours and minutes) to give you an example of how to react fast when an incident occurs so you can limit outage.
  • It’s suitable for IT security incidents as both a planning and review tool, but also for other industries as well.
  • This is a free PowerPoint file, which means you can download and modify the data right away – either by moving the shapes on your slide or automatically with the Office Timeline add-in with just a few clicks.

Incident Response Timeline

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To sum up

Disruptions, disasters and emergencies are the type of challenges every organization needs to prepare for; it’s not a matter of “if” they’re going to happened, but more like “when”. And when they do, the companies that stand most chances of survival are the ones than quickly respond to rapidly-changing conditions.

These templates can help you face the unknown with a plan and support you in building up resilience. They were created with the Office Timeline PowerPoint add-in, a professional timeline maker that turns complicated data into clear, crisp visuals with just a few clicks.

You can download them for free and customize them using either the add-in’s free version (with certain limitations) or the more advanced Pro Edition, which gives you all the power you need to take your planning to the next level. If you’re looking for more templates, you can find dozens of other models in the template gallery, so you’ve got plenty of ideas to explore.



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