When dealing with complex projects, how do you keep track of who does what and not lose your way? It’s dizzying to manage a multitude of tasks with several members involved. You would need a tool like the RACI Matrix template to prevent miscommunication and confusion. Here’s the guide that explains how this chart can help your business.
What is RACI?
The RACI matrix stands for Responsible, Accountable, Consulted, and Informed. These terms are collectively plotted on a diagram to simplify project management. It is a responsibility assignment matrix that maps out the roles and responsibilities for every task within the project scope.
Each letter on this acronym represents the level of responsibility that every member takes on, including milestones and decision-making. It’s a great method of monitoring big, complex projects with numerous stakeholders and departments.
Here is a breakdown of the acronym:
- Responsible. The person with an (R) label indicates they are responsible for executing the task.
- Accountable. This person oversees the task and tracks its progress. Unlike (R), an (A) member is not hands-on, yet they are accountable for completing work.
- Consulted. Persons with a (C) tag provide informational resources to help responsible persons complete the work.
- Informed. When people are informed (I), they are made aware of the task’s progress. They are commonly customers or higher-ups.
Pros and cons of RACI
The biggest advantage of using a RACI matrix template is improved communication with every stakeholder. It allows teams, clients, and upper management to clearly and openly transmit important information on the project. It helps you define roles and responsibilities to know who to approach when asking questions or clarifying a task.
A RACI chart can also prevent the exchange of unnecessary information, which tends to overwhelm team members. For instance, a person labeled (I) cannot answer questions that require hands-on knowledge. Therefore, there is no point in asking them about specific details that only (R) could provide. This project management tool eliminates ‘too many cooks’ who offer inputs with no real value.
However, the RACI matrix has disadvantages, too. Sometimes, you can get too immersed in using the chart for simple projects. Ideally, this tool is only for large projects with diverse stakeholders and tasks on the line. In addition, this template cannot fully define each member’s involvement in the project since the RACI roles are rigid.
When to use a RACI matrix?
Plenty of projects can benefit from using the RACI matrix template. Here are some instances:
- When handling large-scale deliverables like in company-wide workshops or training.
- If you must comply with regulations in a highly regulated industry.
- If you need to create new systems within the business, which will require a lengthy approval or decision-making process.
- During conflicts in setting task ownership or making decisions.
- When your company has a project that involves different departments, it makes workload distribution tricky.
- If you have a high turnover rate and require new members to get into the onboarding process quickly.
How to create a RACI matrix?
The first thing to do when creating a RACI chart is unpack every task in the specified project. You can list them per project phase or enumerate them in one go. Then, it would help if you jotted down every team member or stakeholder involved. It would help if you plotted the RACI acronym in the boxes corresponding to the roles and responsibilities of each member.
With Boardmix's ready-made RACI template, you can create the RACI matrix without hassle. You can find it on the platform’s ‘Templates’ selection. It’s easy to use since all you need to do is fill in the information. The AI-powered tool can organize it all for you!
Now, it's vital to remember that you must share the fully filled-out document with all project stakeholders. The purpose of this template is to keep everyone informed of each person's role. It encourages the team to communicate properly to maximize time, effort, and resources in completing the tasks.
FAQs about RACI
What is the difference between (R) and (A) in RACI?
The Responsible member provides hands-on input on the tasks relevant to the project. On the other hand, (A) reviews every task or deliverable in every stage of the process. The Accountable person can delegate work and is the one to deem whether the project is complete.
What are the RACI rules?
When using the RACI matrix template, you must set only one person each for Responsible and Accountable. Going beyond this number may result in confusion and duplication of work. Also, some tasks may not have Consulted or Informed roles depending on the activity.
It’s also important to know that informed stakeholders only require one-way communication. On the other hand, consultants need a two-way channel to effectively communicate and follow up on inputs regarding the project.