What makes Lucid the most intelligent visual collaboration platform—and why does it matter?

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Intelligence has taken the technology industry by storm. In fact, 80% of tech executives indicate they will increase investment in AI (artificial intelligence) within the next year. 

In the visual collaboration space, companies are jumping on this trend in the form of generative AI. This technology is incredibly valuable during ideation, but it barely scratches the surface of what’s possible when introducing intelligence into collaboration. 

Collaboration platforms only now experimenting with intelligence have missed opportunities to increase productivity, aid decision-making, and save time at every stage of work—beyond ideation.

Lucid is different. We’ve been building with intelligence in mind for over a decade. While other collaboration platforms only focused on simple sticky notes and arrows, Lucid was building advanced automation and data visualization capabilities. We know how vital intelligence is for moving into action, and now our platform is the only one that combines an easy-to-use interface with deep, technical capabilities.

Don’t get us wrong: We’re just as excited about the possibilities of generative AI as the next company. But we view this as an extension of our already intelligent platform—a way to further power effective collaboration and help teams build. Let’s uncover what’s unique about Lucid’s intelligence and how it benefits teams across the business. 

Benefits: Why does intelligence matter in visual collaboration software?

Visuals are a powerful way to communicate ideas clearly and reach a shared understanding—and intelligent visuals are even more powerful. By adding automation and data to visual collaboration, teams can unlock new insights and gain clarity faster than ever. 

An intelligent visual collaboration platform:

  • Makes data more accessible across the organization: By taking data out of hard-to-understand formats like spreadsheets and turning it into visuals, teams across the business can easily make sense of complex information. 
  • Saves time that can be spent on higher-impact activities: With an intelligent platform, teams can spend less time manually creating diagrams or interpreting visuals and more time on collaborative work like problem-solving and creative brainstorming.
  • Helps teams continually innovate: Intelligence helps teams identify trends in their data, areas of concern or interest, and opportunities for improvement—and with dynamic visuals synced with a system of record (like Google Sheets, Jira, and more), teams can ensure they’re taking action based on the most up-to-date information.  
  • Provides clarity around priorities: An intelligent visual collaboration platform takes the guesswork out of decision-making. It can help teams identify trends and align around what’s most important to the business. 
  • Helps with tool consolidation: Since intelligent platforms serve every team’s use cases—from brainstorming and planning to diagramming complex systems, processes, and architecture—businesses don’t have to purchase a separate platform for different needs. As a result, it’s easy to consolidate tools and reduce unnecessary spend.  

What makes a visual collaboration platform “intelligent” anyway?

Artificial intelligence is only part of what makes Lucid’s platform intelligent. When we talk about Lucid’s intelligence, we’re talking about the ability to apply data and automation across the entire lifecycle of work—from overlaying data on processes to automatically aggregating opinions. Here are a few examples of what you can do with Lucid’s intelligence. 

Automatically create visuals from outside data sources 

One of the greatest differences between basic diagramming (diagramming with tools like Miro, Mural, or draw.io) and intelligent diagramming is the ability to link visuals to data.

With Lucid, you can automatically import data directly from where it lives—whether that's static or cloud-based spreadsheets, CRMs like Salesforce, an HRIS, or another system of record—into Lucid to create diagrams nearly instantaneously. A few of the most common (and useful) diagrams teams generate automatically in Lucid are:

With Lucid, it’s easy to keep the data in your visuals up to date. If your data comes from Google Sheets, any change you make to your spreadsheet will automatically sync to Lucidchart. If your data originates in a CSV file or Excel spreadsheet, you can simply replace the data set with the most recent data. 

lucid vs. visio
Automatically transform your data into easy-to-understand visuals to drive decision-making and alignment.

Interpret data by adding automation to your visuals

Not only can you use Lucid to automatically visualize your data, but you can also use it to automatically interpret your data. Lucid helps you glean valuable insights from your data through:

  • Conditional formatting: Create rules to automatically evaluate all shapes in your diagram against your designated criteria. Use this feature to identify patterns or differentiate areas needing attention in your diagram, such as inefficient steps in a process or certain roles in an org chart. 
  • Dynamic shapes: Create data-driven shapes to quickly gauge details like progress towards goals, key metrics, or project completion. Add multiple dynamic shapes to a dashboard for a quick snapshot of important information. 
  • Smart Containers: Group the data linked in your diagrams by unique attributes (such as status, priority, or team) to better understand it. For example, if your linked spreadsheet contains info on project status, you can use Smart Containers to automatically sort your diagram by the different statuses. 
  • Data overlay: Add data on top of existing visuals—from org charts to process diagrams and dashboards—to bring together multiple data sources and easily update your visuals with the most relevant information. 
Intelligent dashboards in Lucid can help teams understand key metrics at a glance.

Automatically aggregate input and ideas to drive data-backed decisions

Data doesn’t always look like numbers. Sometimes, the data we need to make sense of is qualitative: customer input on new features, themes from a large brainstorm, or leadership’s take on business priorities. 

With Lucid’s Visual Activities, you can capture this kind of data and automatically aggregate the results to view trends, areas of consensus, or places of misalignment. Simply select an activity from our library of templates, invite participants to engage, and then view the results.

Teams can view the data in an activity in different formats with just the click of a button. Use this data to drive discussion and make informed decisions.

You can also use Lucid to automatically organize ideas after brainstorms. Simply tag sticky notes by criteria of your choosing—maybe priority, status, or topic—and then let Lucid sort ideas by these criteria so you can easily identify patterns, themes, and next steps.

With Visual Activities, you can automatically turn qualitative feedback into actionable insights.

Propel projects forward with AI-assisted ideation, organization, and synthesis

Because Lucid’s products are already data-backed, we’ve been able to incorporate AI quickly—and securely—into our platform. 

With Collaborative AI, teams can drastically accelerate the ideation and synthesis process. Here’s how:

  • Generate ideas: Use a basic prompt to generate ideas for a brainstorming session and get the ball rolling.
  • More ideas: Use Collaborative AI to dig deeper into ideas that stand out to you and ensure you’re considering all options.
  • Sort ideas: Automatically group ideas by common themes to help make sense of the ideas.
  • Summarize ideas: Let Collaborative AI provide a detailed summary of the main ideas on your board so you can easily align with stakeholders and identify next steps. 

ChatGPT+ users can also use Lucid Custom GPT to automatically generate diagrams based on a prompt of your choosing.  

Collaborative AI not only helps maximize ideation, but it also synthesizes ideas so teams can move into action faster.

The Leading Trends in Visual Collaboration for 2024

Moving into the new year, Lucid is an industry leader in terms of intelligent features. Learn all about how Lucid is at the front of emerging trends in Constellation Research's report.

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Use cases that only Lucid can fully support 

Because Lucid is the only platform with advanced automation and data capabilities, it’s the only platform that can power some of the most critical business use cases for improving efficiency, making decisions, and driving alignment. 

Optimizing processes

While most visual collaboration solutions can help you map processes, only Lucid allows you to add data to your process diagrams—the kind of data needed to understand efficiency, uncover process gaps, and identify improvements. 

Connect process steps to actual data with data linking, or use formulas with custom data fields to make calculations. For example, teams may add data to a value stream map and use formulas to automatically calculate flow time and efficiency. This data can be used to identify roadblocks and risk and work towards improving the problem areas in a process. 

By adding formulas to a process diagram, teams can make data-backed decisions to improve processes.

Creating entity-relationship diagrams (ERDs)

Lucid is the only visual collaboration platform that lets you create an ERD in minutes. Using Lucid’s import from SQL functionality, teams can generate data-backed ERDs with automatically drawn connections. 

When a completed ERD is ready in Lucid, teams can then export their diagram to the DBMS of their choice—no manual building, updating, or editing needed. While other tools can visually represent this information, only Lucid has the data-driven backend to automatically power ERD visualization in a stable and reliable way, saving teams time and effort.

Automatically generate database tables and schemas using Lucid’s SQL import feature.

Generating actionable org charts

With Lucid, you can generate an org chart automatically from a CSV, Google Sheets, or BambooHR, refresh that data when you need to update the diagram, and use the data-backed org chart to glean valuable insights. 

Lucid’s unique org chart capabilities allow you to:

  • Create a group view to show employees grouped by a specific data field instead of a traditional, hierarchical view. Group views are valuable for Scrum team planning, creating cross-functional teams, or identifying staffing needs by role.
  • Add conditional formatting rules based on the advanced shape data to easily visualize compensation, performance, and other personnel details.
View your org charts in different views to help make key staffing and planning decisions.

Account mapping 

Lucid is the only platform that helps sales teams visualize key influencers, roadblocks, and internal relationships through account maps generated automatically from Salesforce.

With a bi-directional sync with Salesforce, teams can create a single source of truth to improve alignment across account teams, resulting in decreased sales cycles and increased revenue. 

Turn your Salesforce data into an intelligent account map using Lucid’s advanced integration.

2024 visual collaboration trends

Curious about how Lucid is leading visual collaboration forward in 2024? Check out our recent article about which trends you can look forward to seeing.

Read now

Power continuous collaboration with Lucid’s intelligent visual collaboration platform

Intelligence has been and will continue to be the foundation of Lucid’s visual collaboration platform. Whether teams need to make data-backed decisions, identify ways to optimize the business, or build custom APIs, Lucid has the intelligent foundation to support them. 

And when teams take advantage of Lucid’s intelligent platform, they’re able to move faster and collaborate more: According to an ROI survey conducted by Lucid, users’ productivity has increased an average of 2.4x by using Lucid and they collaborate 2.6x more. 

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Uncover just how Lucid’s intelligent platform can power your business’s most important initiatives.  

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About Lucid

Lucid Software is a pioneer and leader in visual collaboration dedicated to helping teams build the future. With its products—Lucidchart, Lucidspark, and Lucidscale—teams are supported from ideation to execution and are empowered to align around a shared vision, clarify complexity, and collaborate visually, no matter where they are. Lucid is proud to serve top businesses around the world, including customers such as Google, GE, and NBC Universal, and 99% of the Fortune 500. Lucid partners with industry leaders, including Google, Atlassian, and Microsoft. Since its founding, Lucid has received numerous awards for its products, business, and workplace culture. For more information, visit lucid.co.

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