As BPMN spreads among a constantly growing user group, it is indispensable to analyze the expectations of users towards the appearance of a BPMN model. The user groups are mostly inhomogeneous since users stem from different backgrounds, e.g. IT, managerial sciences or economics. It is conceivable that BPMN novices may have different issues compared to higher skilled modeling experts. When this large set of users starts modeling, the expectations considering the graphical outcome of the modeling process may differ significantly.
In this work, we analyze layout preferences of user groups when modeling with BPMN. We present a set of layout criteria that are formalized and then confirmed by a user study. The conduction of the study reveals preferences of single user groups with respect to secondary notation and layout aesthetics. From our results, proposals for adaptions of software tools towards different BPMN users can be derived.