Friday, 20 May 2011

Internal Controls - Documenting with MS Visio

The last post (Process Mapping with Internal Controls)introduced the idea of integrating internal controls definitions with/within the map of the process that they apply to.  Using Visio the properties of each internal control can be recorded using the "Shape Data" feature. 

For this example, the shape object used to represent an internal control is the "Control transfer" object that comes as part of the Visio "Basic Flowchart Shapes" stencil.

This shape, transposed and coloured red, has been used to add four controls to a Purchase to Pay (P2P) process model (see below).


P2P Process with controls for blog

image The properties of each control have been added using the "Shape Data" feature, using a custom data set defining the properties and values needed.

The properties and typical values for defining an internal control are illustrated in this example.image

Having recorded the data on the map, how can it be accessed and used?  Visio has a "Report" feature ("Data > Reports") that can be used to list the controls and their properties.  We'll work with a report that creates an Excel spreadsheet.



Selecting "Reports" from the "Data" menu brings up the list of available reports.

We'll look at the "ControlReport". 

To view or modify this report, click "Modify".


imageWe want to report on only the controls on the current page.

Click "Next >".





image Now we can select the properties we want to include in the report.

Click "Next >".




imageNext, give the report a title and set the sort criteria.  In this example we'll sort by a Visio default field - "Shape ID".  This will order the report rows according to the order in which they were created on the drawing. Click "Next >".


image Next, save the report.  If it is saved as file then it can be loaded and used by any other or new drawing we create.

Click "Finish".



imageNow click "Run" to run the report.







image Select "Excel" and "OK".







An Excel spreadsheet is created which requires a minimum of formatting to produce a pleasing and usable result.


If at the Visio "Run Report" dialogue we select "Visio shape", Visio will create the Excel report and include it within the process map drawing as an object.



Anonymous said...

Really interesting post. I need a little extra help to get started.

The control transfer object is not in my basic flow chart shapes? Is this an add in? Any idea how to address this?


Steve Rothwell said...

In Visio 2007, the 'control transfer' object can be found in the 'Basic Flowchart Shapes' stencil, accessed via 'File>Shapes>Business>Business Process'.

If you do not have this or can't find it, I suggest selecting another pre-defined object that you can use and quickly find when reporting.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Steve,

I am using premium version 2010 and I cant see the shape on the basic shapes menu.

Is this an add in? Do you know where I can find it?



Steve Rothwell said...

Neil ... if you wish, drop me an email to steve dot rothwell at elstar-consulting dot com

We can continue the conversation from there more easily.