Information Flows

How information flows throughout a company

How Information Flows

Companies constantly rely on information to be able to function effectively. Without it they would be unable to make sales predictions, market research or get information on their target demographic.


There are a number of different ways in which information can flow in an an organization. It can flow up, down or across the organization.


When information flows from a higher level to a lower level with an organization it is called a downward flow of information. An example of this could be a manager providing information on a subordinates job or giving feedback on a project.


Information flowing from a lower level to a higher level within an organization is called an upwards flow of information. An example of this could be someone sending the results of some work they have been doing to their boss. Another example could be a low level support worker handing over a difficult ticket to a higher level so that the problem can be resolved quickly.


When information flows across the same level within an organization it is called horizontal communication. This extremely important as it allows teams of workers to communicate with each other what each member of the team is working on. This helps everyone to keep on track and to know where they are along the development life cycle. It also allows for employees to ask for help or advice from their colleagues when they are stuck which helps the work get done faster while also broadening that employees knowledge of the subject.

Flow Chart

Below I have created an example flow chart from the following scenario:

A company manufactures shoes; the purchasing department buys leather from a tannery and cork from a wood company. The operations function forms shapes from the materials and join them together to make the final product, which they also pack in boxes. The sales function receives orders for the finished products and dispatches them to retail shops (e.g. Brantano or Clarkes).

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