As you are saying that excel is not an option, I would go with Google charts. There are other alternatives, but GC seems to me the most flexible:
It can be stored online in Google Docs, no risk of loosing it when a
You use Fusion tables that are incredibly flexible
- It can become formats for web or print
- It can be shared and worked on by multiple people, with revision control
There are a massive amounts of alternatives and ready-made databases/templates, such as geographic maps (maps are incredibly difficult to maintain in general. Borders etc)
It is pretty easy to understand
- It is highly customisable, but works fine if one is not interested in the fiddly bits of changing colours etc.
- You can generate multiple charts and maps easily from the same data.
They actually look good with the least amount of effort. And, not the least; they are consistent.
As per your comment I will elaborate a little. When I say "databases" I mean predefined information. If you make a bar chart, Google Charts will take care of choosing colours that works and are not too close in hue as in creating confusion.
As for maps, this is a headache for cartographers and GIS people the world over: borders change, country names changes. To keep reasonably up to date on that is a nightmare. Google charts will also give you countries "weighted" (by this i mean that you apply a number to a country, and GC will adjust colours so as to show "amount" of something.
The gauges, though not very stylish, are all sorted too; the graphics, colours and indication is nothing you have to think about if you do not want to.
All charts are usable out of the box, but you can always change whatever aspect you want should you be so inclined.
Make sure you explore the information in the sidebar, as more charts are "hiding" there. Google charts.