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How to Make a Responsibility Assignment Matrix for a Project (Template Included)
The most important resource you’ll employ to deliver the project is people. They have to fit into the schedule and maintain the project budget. Defining what their roles and responsibilities are when executing tasks and delivering on the project goals is an important part of controlling the project.
How can you coordinate all the people who are involved in a project so they know what they’re doing and don’t block others from doing what they are assigned? Using a responsibility assignment matrix can help. An assignment matrix gives your project a team that gets things done.
What is a Responsibility Assignment Matrix in Project Management?
A responsibility assignment matrix (RAM) is a project management chart used to identify and define the various people and organizations and outline each of their roles in working on tasks or delivering a part of the project.
Project managers use an assignment matrix to clarify what cross-functional teams do within the boundaries of the project and its numerous processes. Sometimes a responsibility assignment matrix is required when responding to a request for proposal (RFP).
The responsibility assignment matrix can also be called a RACI matrix, which stands for responsible, accountable, consulted and informed.
- Responsible: Notes who is responsible for executing the task, which is then assigned to them.
- Accountable: Notes who has decision-making authority and how that power is delegated throughout the project team.
- Consulted: Notes who is able to offer insight into the task, from team members to stakeholders.
- Informed: Notes who is updated on what in terms of progress and performance, as well as when and how this information is disseminated.
This creates a map of connections between activities and project team members. Depending on the size of the project, there can be several assignment matrices used for various project levels.
Why Create a Responsibility Assignment Matrix?
The assignment matrix identifies what everyone on the team is responsible for, which means not only what their duties are, but how they participate in the project. Some will have defined tasks, others will offer help with work, while there are some who are designated as decision-makers. These groups all have an identity and function within the project to help guide it towards a successful end.
Clear communication leads to more efficient projects. An assignment matrix facilitates better communication between team members and provides transparency by creating a system to make sure everyone is updated and always on the same page. Belaboring communications can bog down a project with too many pointless meetings and confusing interactions in which people try to understand what they’re supposed to be doing. Using the responsibility assignment matrix helps, but having project management software that connects teams in real-time is ideal.
ProjectManager manages project information by allowing teams to attach files directly to tasks, and our unlimited file storage keeps important project documents at your fingertips anywhere, anytime. Commenting on tasks can save time and tagging others in the project team creates a communication process that avoids the pitfalls of redundancies or unnecessary meetings.
When Should a Responsibility Assignment Matrix Be Created?
The responsibility assignment matrix would be created at the start of the project. You’d want to have everyone on the project team aware of where they stand in terms of their involvement before they start executing tasks.
As much as its use is a preventative measure, it can be used prescriptively. If you’re deep into the project and things are not moving as planned, there could be communication gridlock. If team members are not in the loop, or misconstrue what they’re supposed to be doing, using a responsibility assignment matrix might untie up those knots in the communication channel.
If there’s a problem with leadership overruling suggestions on how to advance the project and this is seen as a problem, it’s likely that the roles and responsibilities of the project team need refining. The responsibility assignment matrix defines who has authority to make decisions and using it or revisiting can determine if the right people are in that position.
In fact, any of the definitions might need reexamining at any phase in the project. Perhaps tasks are falling behind schedule. This could be because team members aren’t aware of what tasks they own. Anytime a delay occurs, returning to the assignment matrix is a good first step, even if you went through the process as you should during the planning stage of the project.
How to Create a Responsibility Assignment Matrix
The actual making of a responsibility assignment matrix is not as difficult as getting everyone on board with what their roles and responsibilities are.
Therefore, you want to include your team in the process, get their input and eventually buy-in without spending too much time and energy on the process. Follow these steps to make sure everyone is in agreement and you’ll have a successful responsibility assignment.
- Identify all the participants involved in the project, from team members to stakeholders and everyone in between.
- List all deliverables associated with the project. Use a work breakdown structure to make sure you don’t miss any.
- Meet with team members on how to execute the tasks to create the deliverables. Every task needs to be discussed in terms of the team’s responsibility and authority.
- Draft the responsibility assignment matrix using a table with the project tasks listed on the left-hand column. Across the top add the name of everyone in the project.
- Where the tasks meet the project team member, assign whether they’re responsible, accountable, consulted or informed.
- When completed, share the responsibility assignment matrix with the project team and stakeholders and hold a meeting if necessary to make sure everyone understands their part in the project. If you’re working in a shared space, print out a copy and post it.
Free Responsibility Assignment Matrix Template
Using a RACI template is a shortcut that sets up your team and the project for success. ProjectManager is more than an award-winning software that organizes tasks, teams and projects to streamline work and boost productivity, it’s also the online hub for all things project management.
Among the hundreds of blog posts, guidebooks and tutorial videos are dozens of free templates that can help you through every phase of your project’s life cycle. Using our free RACI template will help you guide all the project teams better, allowing them to know where they stand in relation to the project and what their level of responsibility and accountability is.
Use it at the start of the project to avoid delays and untangle any communicative knots that are preventing the project from progressing as planned. To keep your project on track, download our free RACI template and get a head start on building a workable responsibility assignment matrix.
Using our free RACI template is a good start, but you have to make sure you fill it in correctly. A responsibility assignment matrix is only as good as the effort put into creating it. Here are some best practices to apply when you’re in the process of building your assignment matrix.
- Involve the team: They’re the ones who will be executing the work. You want their input and buy-in to avoid any costly mistakes or time-consuming questions about what wasn’t made clear at the beginning of the project.
- Identify every single task: Identify all the tasks required to reach your final deliverable. Once you have that thorough list make sure that there is only one person on the team who is accountable.
- Update your RACI regularly: Make sure that each new one is clearly marked as the most current version and is distributed to everyone on the team. There will be times when you’ll want to revisit the responsibility assignment matrix or changes in personnel will require an edit.
- Share responsibility viably: One person shouldn’t have to shoulder the bulk of the responsibilities for the project and you want to give authority throughout the project team and not just among the very top management team.
- Optimize tasks: Managers can use the RACI matrix to see if too many team members have been assigned to a task. Maybe these workers could be spread out for greater productivity. There could be too many people listed as consulted, which slows down the process. The assignment matrix is endlessly useful.
How ProjectManager Helps You Manage Projects Better
ProjectManager is a cloud-based tool that connects everyone in real-time to facilitate planning, monitoring and reporting on the project. It works to give everyone on the project team a job and the knowledge as to where they have authority and when to consult others, as well as defining the reporting process.
Let’s look at the people who are responsible, for example, the team who execute the project. Once invited into the software, you can share the project plan, assign them tasks, add detailed direction, add a deadline and tag for priority and more. The teams can then collaborate by attaching files and images to the tasks and commenting in real-time to work better together.
Those who need to stay informed of the project can do so by also getting invited into the project and sharing plans and schedules with them. Stakeholders can stay updated with reporting features that can generate reports on project variance, cost, time and more with one click. Then share them as a PDF. Reports can even be quickly filtered to zero in on the data stakeholders are interested in.
The responsibility assignment matrix can help you reallocate your resources when things aren’t progressing as planned. Use our software to get further insight. The resource management features include a workload chart that’s color-coded so it’s easy to see who has too many tasks and who can take on more work. Then you can simply reallocate those resources from the workload page to help your team work more productively.
ProjectManager gets you organized, keeps your team focused on their tasks and stakeholders in the loop. Gain efficiencies throughout every aspect of your project’s life cycle with an online Gantt chart to schedule work and kanban boards, a visual workflow feature that provides transparency into production. All that and it’s on a collaborative platform to keep everyone connected. Try ProjectManager today for free.
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What Is a RACI Matrix?
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A RACI matrix is a document that clarifies which individuals or groups are responsible for a project’s successful completion, and the roles that each will play throughout the project. The acronym RACI stands for the different responsibility types: Responsible, Accountable, Consulted, and Informed.
Successful project management depends on a team-wide understanding of roles and responsibilities. Using a RACI matrix to assign and define each role is a great way to keep a project on track and positioned for success. When designed correctly, the RACI matrix is a way for a project manager to help ensure the success of the project before it’s even begun.
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How Does a RACI Chart Help Project Managers?
Project managers use RACI charts to keep track of team roles and relay those responsibilities to the larger team. The matrix defines clear roles and responsibilities for individual team members across the various phases of the project, breaking each role down into four types of designation: those who are Responsible and Accountable for project deliverables, those who should be Consulted as work begins, and stakeholders who need to be Informed of ongoing progress, roadblocks, and updates.
Read more about project phases
RACI Matrix Definitions
The individual(s) with responsibility for the task or deliverable is typically responsible for developing and completing the project deliverables themselves. The responsible parties are typically hands-on team members that make direct contributions toward the completion of the project. The responsible team is comprised of the project’s “doers”, working hands-on to ensure that each deliverable is completed.
Some examples of responsible parties are:
- Project Managers
- Business Analysts
- Graphic Designers
Accountable parties ensure accountability to project deadlines, and ultimately, accountability to project completion. This group frequently also falls under the informed category.
Some examples of accountable parties are:
- Product Owners
- Signature Authorities
- Business Owners
- Key Stakeholders
Consulted individuals’ opinions are crucial, and their feedback needs to be considered at every step of the game. These individuals provide guidance that is often a prerequisite to other project tasks, for example, providing legal guidance on a project throughout the process. If you are working on new product development or expansion, this could essentially be the entire organization.
Some examples of consulted parties are:
- Legal Experts
- Information Security and Cybersecurity Experts
- Compliance Consultants
Informed persons are those that need to stay in the loop of communication throughout the project. These individuals do not have to be consulted or be a part of the decision-making, but they should be made aware of all project updates. Typically, this party are business owners or stakeholders that are more interested in viewing the project at a 30,000-foot view. Keep this group on your cc list for awareness of topics, decisions, and progress – that includes making them part of the initial project kickoff and project demos as optional attendees. This group often also falls under the accountable group.
Some examples of informed parties are:
- Project Committee Members
- External Stakeholders
Why Are RACI Roles Important?
RACI roles provide a sense of organization and clarity for teams that are looking to divide roles and keep team members accountable for their contributions. Considering that 27% of projects go over budget, for reasons like scope creep and lack of defined roles, RACI roles help position a project for success and avoid common pitfalls.
Moreover, RACI roles help ensure that communication between all roles is ongoing. When you consider that nearly half of all project spending is at risk of being wasted due to a lack of effective team-based communication , it becomes all that more important to prioritize. Ultimately, teams who prioritize communication and well-defined roles are better off, and RACI roles help teams achieve that goal faster – while providing accountability for each team member’s unique contributions to the success of the project.
Read More: Top 10 Main Causes of Project Failure
How to Create a RACI Matrix
If you’re looking to implement a RACI matrix as part of your team’s project planning process, take these steps to create a RACI matrix.
Ensure that you have a thorough understanding of the project and its demands before outlining any further steps by communicating with key stakeholders and decision-makers.
Determine the list of key activities and deliverables from the director of program management or other leadership.
Determine who is needed to be a part of the project or initiative.
Determine the project roles and responsible job titles and persons for each activity and deliverable.
Hold review sessions with key members of the team for alignment, and if you haven’t already, host a kickoff meeting with the entirety of the team and key stakeholders to unveil the matrix, address questions, and more.
If the project has already started, it’s not too late to implement a RACI matrix.
- Outline the story. Using research from multiple sources, do a, b, c, and d.
- Utilize steps 2 and 3 (shown above). Ensure the right groups are assigned and engaged.
- Hold a review session. Ensure that the team acknowledges and discusses the plan and the roles assigned.
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Examples of a RACI Matrix
Our FREE Downloadable RACI Matrix Template
Who creates the raci matrix.
The RACI matrix — sometimes called RACI model, RACI diagram, or simply just RAC — is created by the project manager at the start of the project as a key part of establishing the initial human resources planning for the project. Because miscommunication is a common threat to any project, RACI charts are a great asset to teams dealing with any type of project, from very simple projects to extremely complex ones.
FAQ: How do I Implement a RACI matrix?
Implementing a RACI matrix takes more than just a few emails and sporadic conversations – it takes consistent communication and planning. You should host a kickoff meeting to introduce the matrix to the team and make a plan to continue meeting at predetermined times throughout the project lifecycle.
Here are a few more tips to keep in mind as you implement your RACI matrix within the team dynamic:
- Get everyone prepared. Send the document around to the meeting distribution as read-ahead material, requesting feedback if there are any major concerns.
- Roll out each role for the team . During the meeting, conduct a review of the tasks and responsible parties. Do not rush through this review, but rather ensure enough time in your project kickoff for this important aspect. (Be certain to clarify the definitions of RACI to avoid ambiguity.)
- Consider changes and update accordingly. After the meeting, send out the notes documenting acceptance or updates to the RACI. In addition to sending out the notes, request any corrections within a reasonable yet defined timeframe. Clarify that if no changes are requested, each person is acknowledging their role and committing to the project tasks as outlined.
- Stay in touch. Consider a quick review with the entire team each quarter or every six months for longer projects to ensure it remains up-to-date and not simply another document in the repository but a relied-upon artifact.
FAQ: What are RACI matrix best practices?
As you implement the raci matrix….
- Encourage teamwork and foster collaboration whenever possible.
- Don’t fear updates – make changes and adjustments as needed (but be sure to communicate those changes clearly to all parties).
- Earlier is better. Roll out your matrix plan to the team BEFORE you plan to implement it for the best results.
- Have a clear-cut understanding of the project scope and how each role connects to the overall project goal.
For “Responsible” Parties:
- Make sure your project’s definition of Responsible is clear on who holds the “decider” role for the project or project phase’s completion, and what the dimensions of that responsibility will be.
- Ensure that all parties are aware of their role and responsibilities within the matrix.
For “Accountable” Parties:
- When multiple Accountable team members must exist, use your definitions to make clear which individual is accountable for a given project element, and how that individual needs to interact with other Accountable team members.
- Ensure that there is only one “Accountable” party assigned per task.
- Be sure that the Accountable party has the authority and power to oversee the task as the accountable party.
For Consulted and Informed Parties:
- Consulted parties are often high-level decision-makers with heavy schedules. Make sure you’re clear on their availability ahead of time.
- Similar to Consulted parties, Informed parties are often less hands-on and have less understanding of day-to-day project operations. As the project goes on, make sure to keep detailed notes to keep the Informed party up-to-date on key information.
- Understand the ways that these parties like to communicate and create a plan to reach them early – whether that’s over phone calls, emails, video calls, or from within your project management system’s collaboration tools.
- Knowing the difference between who needs to be consulted versus informed can be a challenge if there is ambiguity about project roles. Consider what aspects of the project different team members need to know to do their jobs, and then bake those into your definitions.
RACI Matrix Pros & Cons
Free raci matrix templates.
A number of project management software solutions include a native RACI matrix template. Here are just a few we’ve found:
Colorful RACI Chart Template
We love this template from Smartsheet because it’s colorful, thorough, and includes room for every party involved in the project.
Pastel Colored RACI Matrix Template
This template from the Academy to Innovate HR is a great choice for project managers who want to organize their team roles with an easy-on-the-eyes chart that evolves beyond the simple spreadsheet.
Simple RACI Chart from Clickup
These RACI templates from Clickup have enough variety to fit any of your project needs, but are simple enough for even beginner PMs to use.
Detailed RACI Matrix Template
This template is a great starter template for anyone looking to explore RACI charts in their project management strategy. As an added bonus – it comes with the RACI definitions already built in!
Excel-Based RACI Chart Template
Are you an Excel or Google Sheets user looking to take advantage of the RACI matrix? An Excel-formatted template from Project Management Docs can be just the solution for you. This template is a great template for users who want a chart that comes in a pre-formatted structure.
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What Is a RACI Chart? How to Use RACI to Assign Project Roles
It’s a fact: Complex projects make it easy for teams to lose track of tasks.
You might have an air-tight project plan and a stellar team to back it up. But if you’re not crystal clear about assignments—or even involvement—on a task level, confusion, crankiness, and even demotivation will creep into your project team.
Lucky for you, avoiding those issues is as simple as creating a RACI chart.
In this article, we’ll explain what a RACI matrix is and how it’s used in project management. You’ll also learn how to make a RACI chart using our free Excel template or, even better, build RACI roles directly into your project plan using TeamGantt.
What is a RACI chart?
Raci definitions explained.
- RACI chart example
Benefits of the RACI model in project management
When to use or skip a raci chart for your project, raci matrix rules and best practices, common raci pitfalls and how to avoid them, raci model alternatives.
- How to create a RACI matrix in Excel with free template
How to build a RACI chart online in TeamGantt
A RACI chart—also known as a responsibility assignment matrix—is a diagram used in project management to define team roles across 4 categories: Responsible , Accountable , Consulted , and Informed . It helps clarify who does the work, who calls the shots, whose opinion matters, and who needs to stay in the loop for each task, milestone, or decision.
A RACI chart enables you to visualize roles and responsibilities at a more granular level than simple resource assignments. That way team members and stakeholders know what’s expected of them so confusion doesn’t get in the way of project success.
RACI stands for Responsible , Accountable , Consulted , and Informed . Each letter in the acronym represents the level of ownership each person involved in a project will have on an individual deliverable.
R = Responsible
This team member does the work to complete the task. Every task needs at least one Responsible party, but it’s okay to assign more.
A = Accountable
This person delegates work and is the last one to review the task or deliverable before it’s deemed complete. On some tasks, the Responsible party may also serve as the Accountable one. Just be sure you only have one Accountable person assigned to each task or deliverable. (Note: It might not be your project manager!)
C = Consulted
Every deliverable is strengthened by review and consultation from more than one team member. Consulted parties are typically the people who provide input based on either how it will impact their future project work or their domain of expertise on the deliverable itself.
I = Informed
Informed stakeholders simply need to be kept in the loop on project progress, rather than roped into the details of every deliverable.
This simple chart gives you an at-a-glance view of RACI meanings and how many people to assign to each role in your RACI matrix.
Responsible vs Accountable meanings in RACI
The same person can be both Responsible and Accountable for a task in a RACI matrix—including a project manager. But they’re not one and the same. So what’s the difference?
- Responsible is a task-oriented designation that applies to the person (or people) actually completing the work. A whole team can be responsible for the execution of one task.
- Accountable is an outcome-oriented designation that applies to a single person who reports on the work, whether in status updates or upon delivery. Being Accountable means you must answer for and/or sign off on the deliverable and deal with the consequences if it falls short of goals.
RACI chart example: Practical application for the real world
Let’s take a closer look at how you might put the RACI model to work on a real-life project. Here’s a sample RACI chart for a project that involves delivering a slide deck for an upcoming presentation the marketing manager is giving.
Basic tasks for this project include:
- Write project brief
- Create content
- Design slides
- Review deck
- Approve final deck
In this project example, we’ve assigned RACI roles to 7 key team members:
- Project manager
- Marketing manager
- Editorial director
- Content writer
- Creative director
Let’s zoom in on the RACI roles we mapped out for the Create content task example so you understand the why behind these assignments.
Sample RACI assignment: Create content task
- Responsible : The content writer is listed as Responsible for this task, so that’s who will actively work on content creation.
- Accountable : The editorial director is listed as Accountable for this task because that’s who is ultimately on the line for content quality and accuracy. Once the content is written, she’s the one who will review it to ensure it meets their company’s editorial standards.
- Consulted : The marketing manager is listed as Consulted . Since the marketing manager is the subject matter expert for the presentation, the writer can go to them for input or help filling in content gaps along the way.
- Informed : Several people have been assigned to the Informed role, though for different reasons. Since the Design slides task depends on this one, we want to make sure the writer keeps the creative director and designer informed on the status of content creation. The project manager and CMO are listed as Informed simply because they want to be kept in the loop about how work is progressing.
At its core, a RACI chart helps you set clear expectations about project roles and responsibilities. That way you don’t have multiple people working on the same task or against one another because tasks weren’t clearly defined on the front end.
A RACI matrix also encourages team members to take responsibility for their work—or defer to someone else when needed. Essentially, you’ll remove personal judgment and politics from your process and focus on your team’s ability to act responsibly within a framework you’ve created. Sounds pretty sweet, huh?
See how TeamGantt's built-in RACI chart feature works.
A RACI chart serves just about every project well. But it’s especially helpful when tasks require multiple resources, run concurrently, or depend on other tasks.
Here are a few scenarios when the RACI model is useful:
- The decision-making or approval process could hold up the project.
- There’s conflict about task ownership or decision-making.
- The project workload feels like it’s not distributed evenly.
- You experience turnover on a team and need to onboard someone quickly to a new role.
Of course, not all teams and projects are created equally. You might work with a team who just happens to communicate really well and stays on top of their own work. (Lucky you!) Or maybe your project is small enough that it would be silly to take the time to go through this exercise.
In cases like these, don’t worry about taking the extra step of creating a RACI matrix. Just be sure you have a clear plan in place to guide your team and project.
Using a RACI chart is a whole lot easier when you follow a few simple rules. Once your RACI chart is complete, review it to be sure it meets these criteria:
- Every task has at least one Responsible person.
- There’s one (and only one!) Accountable party assigned to each task to allow for clear decision-making.
- No team members are overloaded with too many Responsible tasks.
- Every team member has a role on each task. (It’s not uncommon for some folks to be Informed on most tasks.)
These best practices can help you get the most out of your RACI chart:
- Focus on project tasks, milestones, and decisions in the RACI matrix. Avoid generic or administrative to-dos like team meetings or status reports .
- Align the tasks in your RACI chart with your project plan so there’s no confusion about details and due dates. (TeamGantt does this work for you by tying your RACI chart directly to your plan!)
- Keep RACI definitions close by because they can be tough to remember sometimes!
- Assign the Responsible team members to tasks in TeamGantt .
Now let’s walk through a few common mistakes that could hinder your RACI chart’s effectiveness.
Failing to get buy-in from your team and stakeholders
Creating a RACI matrix in a vacuum won’t serve any project well. In a best-case scenario, you’d sit down with your team and stakeholders to walk through the role assignments on each task. But let’s be real: That’s not always possible.
Just be sure everyone represented on your RACI chart has acknowledged and agreed to the roles and responsibilities you’ve laid out. More importantly, you want to check that your matrix eliminates any further project confusion.
Setting it and forgetting it
It’s easy to build a RACI matrix at the start of a project, then let it collect dust once the real work begins. But remember: This chart will defend you against mishaps that arise when you have too many cooks in the kitchen or a team member who thinks someone else is handling the work.
That’s why it’s important to keep these roles top of mind throughout a project’s life cycle. You can do this by reviewing RACI assignments for upcoming tasks in weekly status update meetings and making sure everyone involved in a project has easy access to the RACI chart.
In TeamGantt, you can assign RACI roles directly in your project plan so they’re clearly visible as team members work their way to the finish line.
Overcomplicating stakeholder communication
If you have a lot of Consulted and Informed roles on your matrix, make sure you have an easy and lightweight way to keep them informed. It could be as simple as making sure department heads and senior leaders have access to your project plan so they can follow progress along the way.
Managing a project with external clients or stakeholders? Sharing a view-only link to your project in TeamGantt is a great option for looping in folks outside your organization.
RACI isn’t the only responsibility assignment matrix out there. These RACI model alternatives provide a small sample of other approaches you might come across in project management.
Also sometimes called a RASIC chart, this RACI alternative adds one extra role into the responsibility assignment mix. In the RASCI model, the S stands for Supportive . While this role covers anyone who will lend the Responsible person a hand with the work, a Supportive team member isn’t responsible for the outcome.
DACI stands for Driver , Approver , Contributor , Informed and is used to outline decision-making roles and responsibilities for projects. In this framework, the project manager or leader typically serves as the Driver guiding the team to a decision.
RAPID responsibility matrix
RAPID stands for Recommend , Agree , Perform , Input , Decide and is another decision-making framework used to define authority vs accountability. The Recommend role kicks things off by suggesting an action, while the Decide role has the ultimate say in how things move forward.
CARS stands for Communicate , Approver , Responsible , Support . In this framework, Communicate combines RACI’s Consulted and Informed roles into a single assignment. Someone with the Communicate role lends their expertise and needs to be kept up-to-date on progress. The Approver is the main decision-maker who calls the shots.
How to create a RACI matrix in Excel
Lots of people use Excel to make a RACI chart for their projects. To build a RACI matrix in Excel, simply follow these 5 steps, using the examples below as your guide.
1. List project tasks and deliverables in column A
First, make a list of all the work that needs to be done for your project down the left side of your RACI chart. Enter each project task, milestone, or decision in column A of your Excel worksheet.
Feel free to group tasks by project phase like we’ve done in the RACI chart example below. That way, your RACI matrix is easy to scan and read.
2. Add team members or project roles across row 1
Starting with column B, label each column header with the name of a team member and/or project role.
Include the people who will execute and review work for the project, as well as any subject matter experts or stakeholders you may need to consult or keep in the loop along the way.
3. Insert a new worksheet for RACI roles and definitions
Click Insert > Insert Sheet from the Home ribbon at the top of your Excel workbook.
Go to your new worksheet, and list each letter of the RACI acronym in column A. Then enter the corresponding role for each letter in column B and their definitions in column C, like we’ve done in the example below.
This worksheet provides a handy reference in case you or your teammates need a refresher on RACI roles and definitions. We’ll also use it to populate a drop-down list on your main worksheet to make it easier to assign RACI roles quickly.
4. Add a drop-down list of roles to your RACI matrix
Now, go back to your main worksheet, and click into the first open cell in your RACI chart.
On the ribbon, click Data > Data validation to insert a drop-down list with RACI roles.
On the Settings tab, choose List under the Allow menu.
Click into the Source field, then highlight the data range with your RACI options from the RACI Roles & Definitions worksheet you set up in Step 3. We highlighted cells A2-A5 in our example.
Verify your Data validation settings are correct, then hit Enter to add the drop-down list to your selected cell.
Copy and paste that cell to apply the drop-down list to other cells in your RACI matrix worksheet.
5. Assign a RACI value to everyone on every task
You’re finally ready to fill out your RACI chart!
Go down the list of tasks on your RACI matrix, and assign a role to every person who will be involved in that project step or deliverable.
Free Excel RACI template
Want to build an Excel RACI chart of your own, but don't want to start from scratch? Download this blank RACI chart template for free!
TeamGantt makes mapping task roles and responsibilities simple by building a RACI chart right into your project plan. Not only does that save you time and paperwork, but it also ensures everyone always has easy access to your RACI matrix online.
Here’s how to use TeamGantt’s RACI feature for your next project.
Assigning RACI roles and responsibilities to TeamGantt tasks
- Open your project, and toggle to the RACI tab. This will display all your project tasks in a list format (rows). On the right side of the chart, you’ll see a column for each person currently invited to the project with cells for each task in the project.
- Click the cell below each person who needs to be assigned a role on a task, and choose one of the RACI options from the drop-down.
Viewing RACI chart assignments for your project
There are 2 simple ways to view RACI assignments in TeamGantt:
- From the Gantt tab: If someone is assigned to a task and has a RACI role on that task, the RACI value will appear in parentheses next to that person’s name on the gantt chart. Just be aware that you won’t see RACI assignments for people who haven’t been assigned to a specific task in Gantt view.
- From the RACI tab : To access your project’s full RACI chart, simply toggle to the RACI tab for that project. You’ll find RACI assignments for every person playing a role—whether or not they’re the one responsible for doing the work.
Keep your team in sync with TeamGantt
A RACI chart is a simple tool that makes projects easier to manage by creating less confusion and more accountability. But you’ve got more than roles and responsibilities to keep straight.
TeamGantt makes it easy to build a project plan your whole team can contribute to and collaborate on, with RACI assignments built right in. And because everything happens online, you can stay on top of deadlines and keep up with project progress in real time.
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What is a Responsibility Assignment Matrix (RAM) in Project Management?
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Introduction to Responsibility Assignment Matrix (RAM)
Project management is a complex process that involves multiple stakeholders, tasks, and resources. To ensure the success of a project, it is crucial to assign clear roles and responsibilities to team members and accurately define their tasks.
One tool that can help project managers achieve this goal is the Responsibility Assignment Matrix (RAM). In this article, we will explore the definition and benefits of RAM, as well as some examples.
If you’re looking for a RAM template that will help you assign roles and clarify responsibilities, Wrike has a customizable template ready to go.
What is a Responsibility Assignment Matrix (RAM) in project management?
A responsibility assignment matrix (RAM) in project management, also known as a RACI chart or RACI matrix, details all the necessary stakeholders and clarifies responsibilities amongst cross-functional teams and their involvement level in a project. RACI stands for Responsible, Accountable, Consulted, and Informed and each letter corresponds to a team member.
A RAM in project management should be referred to by all parties throughout a project because it helps plan an individual’s roles and responsibilities before work begins. A RACI matrix ensures all stakeholders know who is responsible for completing a task or getting feedback on deliverables.
The four roles are broken down as follows:
- Responsible: The person(s) completing the task
- Accountable: The team member coordinating the actions, making decisions, and delegating to those responsible for the task
- Consulted: The person(s) who will be communicated with regarding decisions and tasks
- Informed: The person(s) who will be updated during the project and upon completion
Read more about RACI here .
Identify and visualize roles seamlessly with Wrike
Responsibility assignment matrix example.
A common RAM template looks like the example below. Notice how all stakeholders can have more than one role:
Responsibility Assignment Matrix template
Below you can see a powerful RAM template . The chart helps with visualizing roles and workload clearly. Therefore, project managers and team members follow the progress easily and stay on track.
Clarify roles with Wrike
In conclusion, RAM is a useful tool for any project manager who wants to ensure their team is clear on their responsibilities. It helps to establish a structured approach to project management, allowing for better communication, accountability, and ultimately, project success.
Using Wrike’s pre-built template, you can define the roles of each team member so everybody is on the same page. The template will also help you balance your workload and create complete transparency on your team structure.
What is a RACI Chart?
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Article • 6 min read
The Responsibility Assignment Matrix (RAM)
Knowing where the buck ultimately stops.
By the Mind Tools Content Team
It takes a lot of effort to keep a large project running smoothly. With a large number of variables, people, and deliverables, it’s hard to keep on top of everything that’s happening. Consider the following scenario:
Hal (the distressed project manager): "What do you mean, we don’t have the test results yet?! What has Katy been doing? Get Katy!"
Katy: "No, Hal, I wasn’t responsible for getting that done. Joan has more expertise in that area, remember? I’ll ask Joan what happened."
Joan: "Gee, Katy, I know I have more experience with these reports, but I was waiting for you to contact me so we could review them together."
Do you recognize anyone you know? This type of situation is repeated daily in organizations across the globe. And most of the time, there’s no incompetence or bad intentions involved. More often, problems like this are the result of inadequate planning and poor communication.
Successful projects have a clear breakdown of who is ultimately responsible for each aspect of the project. Without clear, written, and agreed-upon accountability, it’s far too easy to for communication to fail and for responsibilities to be muddled.
So how do you avoid this?
Developing a Responsibility Assignment Matrix
One tool that project managers use to keep these assignments clear is the Responsibility Assignment Matrix (also called the RAM, or the Responsibility Matrix). This matches deliverables with the people who are responsible for them. For every piece of the project, the matrix shows who needs to contribute what for the project to be completed.
For example, let’s say that you’re upgrading your customer service delivery system, and you need to train your staff to use new procedures and tools.
Step One: Define Your Deliverables
Using a Work Breakdown Structure , you define three key deliverables for this training project, with a few subcategories for each:
- Survey current practice.
- Define new practice.
- Locate resources.
- Prepare training schedule.
- Manage training.
- Re-survey practices after implementation.
- Analyze results.
A Work Breakdown Structure (WBS) is a project planning tool used to break a project down into smaller, more manageable pieces of work (deliverables). It's not a list of every task: rather, it's a "tree" structure showing the meaningful groups of activities that make up the main segments of the project.
Step Two: Identify the People Involved
Map out who is on your project team. By creating a chart of individuals who are available, you can then delegate work assignments based on expertise, and you can recruit talent that you’re missing. This step is often called an “Organization Breakdown Structure” because it creates an organizational chart for your team.
Step Three: Create Your Responsibility Matrix
Draw a matrix. The deliverables are the column headings, and the people are the row titles.
With your team, determine accountabilities as well as other levels of involvement for each item in your Work Breakdown Structure.
A useful framework to determine role assignments is RACI . This defines four levels of involvement:
R = Responsible (People who do the work). A = Accountable (People who make sure the work gets done). C = Consulted (People who provide input before and during the work). I = Informed (People who are kept informed of progress).
Project Management Institute, "A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK Guide)" – Fifth Edition, (2013). Copyright and all rights reserved. Material from this publication has been reproduced with the permission of PMI.
Other levels of involvement may include “assist”, “coordinate”, “sign off”, and “review”. You can decide how to assign responsibility for your project and your team. But you must be sure that ultimate accountability and responsibility for performing the work are agreed upon and communicated.
Step Four: Communicate
When your Responsibility Assignment Matrix is complete, communicate it to all stakeholders. It’s a good idea to post it in an area where people will see it. Used effectively, the RAM helps people understand what they should be doing at all stages of the project.
Project teams can easily lose focus on what needs to be done and who needs to do it. People may assume that somebody else is doing something – and before long, key pieces of work fall behind schedule.
To avoid this common problem, consider developing a Responsibility Assignment Matrix for your team. This matrix clearly identifies which role each team member has agreed to take on for each of the project’s main deliverables.
With these assignments, you can eliminate miscommunication about who’s doing what – and you can help to ensure that your project is successful.
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What is a RACI Matrix? Definition, How to Create, Rules, Benefits, Advantages and Disadvantages
By Paul VanZandt
Published on: May 23, 2022
Table of Content
What is a RACI Matrix?
Creating a raci matrix, raci matrix rules, 11 benefits of raci matrix, advantages of a raci matrix, disadvantages of a raci matrix, how detailed should a raci chart be.
A RACI matrix is a straightforward method for defining and documenting project roles and responsibilities. Using one will increase your chances of project success significantly. RACI was first introduced in the 1950s as the “Decision Rights Matrix.” It is the only project management tool that takes roles and people into account. RACI variants include RASCI, ARCI, and DACI. This article will discuss a RACI matrix, its goals, benefits, and drawbacks.
A RACI matrix is defined as a responsibility assignment chart that defines and documents the tasks, milestones, and critical decisions necessary to complete a project. This is one of the preferred task and responsibility assignment methods in project management as it assigns tasks and reduces unnecessary confusion on tasks.
The acronym RACI represents the four roles that stakeholders might play in any project. That is, responsible, accountable, consulted, and informed.
The people who work are responsible. These are the people who must complete a task or make a decision. Several people can be jointly Responsible.
An individual must sign off or approve when the task, objective, or decision is complete. That person is accountable. Note, however, that not more than one person can be accountable, which means that the buck stops there.
There’s always that person who needs to give his input or contribution before the work can be done and signed off. That person is consulted. These are active participants who are in the loop.
Updates on progress or decisions go to the informed. These people are not formally consulted. They only contribute directly to the task or decision. For someone to create a RACI matrix, it is essential to identify all the tasks involved in delivering the project. List these tasks on the left-hand side of the chart in the order they need to be completed.
Next, pinpoint all the project stakeholders and list their names at the chart’s top. After this, fill in the cells of the model, and know who is responsible, accountable, consulted, and informed. After all, these have been done, the final step in creating your RACI matrix is to share it with your stakeholders, resolve any conflicts or ambiguities, and get an agreement.
For each stakeholder, ask these three questions:
- Does one stakeholder have many projects assigned to him?
- Does the stakeholder need to participate in many of the activities?
- Can Responsible be changed to Consulted, or vice-versa?
- Does each stakeholder concur with the role that they are assigned?
That should be included in the project’s charter and documentation when such an agreement is achieved.
Here are the basic steps you’ll find helpful in creating a RACI matrix:
1. Pinpoint the project roles
Select everyone that should be involved in the project. It could be a team member working on the tasks or a stakeholder who needs to be updated on progress. Traditionally, you would define the roles’ job titles along the top of the matrix. Some prefer to use roles if a single person fills various roles in other cases. However, you should specify the person’s name if multiple people are filling similar roles, or sometimes, you may find it more accessible.
2. Identify tasks and deliverables
List all the tasks and deliverables that need to be accomplished in the project. Place all these tasks on the far left column of your chart. Actually, there can be as many tasks on the chart as you want, but try to avoid going too granular to keep your chart as simple to read as possible.
3. Assign a RACI to each task
Consider each task on your chart and assign a person or role who should be responsible and accountable for them.
Each task should have only one role/person accountable, although it doesn’t have to be the same person accountable for every task. Also, decide who should be consulted or informed throughout the process and after completing tasks or deliverables.
4. Share the matrix with your team
Discuss with your team. Share your matrix with your team. Explain and let everyone know their roles and responsibilities. Request feedback to resolve any potential conflicts or ambiguities among tasks or assigned roles.
5. Share the matrix with stakeholders
Please share it with any significant stakeholders once your team has approved the matrix. Secure the stakeholder’s approval and decide who should be communicated with or consulted throughout the said project. This helps to manage expectations moving forward and eliminates confusion.
Learn more: What is Eisenhower Matrix?
If you stick to a few basic guidelines, working with a RACI chart will be less of a hassle. Once your RACI chart is finished, you should review it to ensure that it satisfies the following criteria:
- Have at least one Responsible individual assigned to every task.
- Ensure that everyone represented on your RACI chart is aware of and has acknowledged and agreed to the roles and responsibilities that you have outlined. Most importantly, you need to make sure that your matrix clears up any additional confusion regarding the project.
- Pay attention to the responsibilities, accomplishments, and decisions outlined in the RACI matrix. Stay away from tasks that are too general or too administrative, such as attending team meetings or providing status reports.
- Each task has a single (and only one) accountable party assigned to it to facilitate unambiguous decision-making.
- No team member is overburdened with an excessive number of Responsible tasks.
- Every individual on the team contributes to the completion of each task.
- Make sure you have a simple and unobtrusive method to keep those who are consulted and Informed roles on your matrix informed if you have many of these roles. It might be as easy as ensuring that everyone has access to your project plan so that they can keep track of the progress being made all along. It’s an excellent option for bringing people outside your organization into the loop.
A RACI matrix, also known as a Responsibility Assignment Matrix, is a valuable tool in project management and organizational planning. It helps define and communicate the roles and responsibilities of team members in a project or process. The benefits of using a RACI matrix include:
1. Clarity and Communication: It provides a clear and visual representation of who is responsible, accountable, consulted, and informed for each task or activity. The transparency provided by the RACI matrix contributes to a decrease in uncertainty and misinterpretations.
2. Role Definition: It ensures that everyone involved in a project or process understands their specific role and what is expected of them. This can enhance accountability and performance.
3. Delegation of Tasks: The matrix helps in the delegation of tasks, making it easier to assign responsibilities and track progress. Team members know what they are accountable for, making it more likely that tasks will be completed on time.
4. Time and Resource Management: By clearly defining roles and responsibilities, the RACI matrix helps teams allocate their time and resources more efficiently. This reduces the risk of duplication of efforts or neglect of critical tasks.
5. Decision-Making: It helps specify who needs to be consulted or informed for each task. This is especially important for decision-making processes, ensuring that the right people are involved in making critical choices.
6. Conflict Resolution: When disagreements or conflicts arise within a project or process, the RACI matrix can serve as a reference to determine who has the final decision-making authority. This can help resolve disputes more efficiently.
7. Alignment with Goals: The RACI matrix can be used to ensure that every task and activity is aligned with the project or organizational goals, helping to maintain focus and achieve objectives.
8. Onboarding and Training: It is a valuable tool for onboarding new team members or employees, as it clearly outlines their roles and responsibilities. Additionally, it has applications for training and development purposes.
9. Risk Mitigation: Defining responsibilities, reduces the risk of tasks being overlooked or neglected, which can lead to project delays or failures.
10. Improved Collaboration: The RACI matrix encourages collaboration by outlining who needs to be consulted or informed. It promotes a sense of teamwork and cooperation among team members.
11. Process Improvement: Over time, as projects progress and processes evolve, the RACI matrix can be updated to reflect changes in roles and responsibilities. This supports ongoing process improvement efforts.
In summary, the RACI matrix is a useful tool for enhancing project management and organizational processes. It fosters clear communication, accountability, and efficient resource allocation, ultimately contributing to successful project outcomes and improved teamwork.
There are several benefits to creating a RACI matrix before starting a project. These benefits of the RACI Matrix include:
- Streamlined Communication: With the RACI matrix, you can streamline communication and involve the appropriate people at the proper time. This can help to expedite and simplify decision-making.
- Stakeholder input is streamlined: How? By distinguishing between key stakeholders who must be asked for input and key stakeholders who must be informed, you reduce the likelihood of feedback delays. You can ensure that only those who should be kept informed are kept up to date.
- Facilitate delegation: Creating the RACI matrix ahead of time defines everyone’s roles. There is also a clearly defined person in charge of the project to whom others can turn for advice, questions, or feedback.
- Expectations are clear: There is no confusion because everyone involved in the project understands who is responsible for completing each task. It also assists key stakeholders in understanding their respective roles.
- It isn’t easy to define all of the relationships between project participants.
The matrix responsibility chart does not describe people’s interactions in a project.
- This chart only serves as a mechanical aid.
This chart is merely a mechanical tool for determining responsibilities; it does not clearly define the relationships between project participants. The authority-responsibility relationship is defined in general terms. It isn’t easy to express the extent and state of a relationship.
- Customer-imposed constraints may limit its utility.
Learn more: What is Ansoff Matrix?
Sometimes, it could be tempting to make your RACi Chart as detailed as possible. Still, the industry best practice recommended by the Project Management Institute is that the ideal RACI chart should be between 8-10 project activities. This breaks the project down into manageable bits. Here are a few different approaches one can take:
- Do not mistake attempting to list every person who will be involved because a RACI chart allows you to organize individuals into groups or departments. Instead, you should list a department or a group. Who is responsible for making contact with the customers? Marketing.
- If a high-level chart provides you with a general division of labor by department, you should create more specific RACI charts for the individual activities you require. In this particular illustration, the RACI labeled “Contact Customers” could be broken down into a more granular set of eight to ten activities involving a different group of individuals.
- A complicated undertaking can also be cut into manageable pieces by dividing it into distinct periods. For instance, make a RACI chart for the work that needs to be completed in the next two to three weeks. After you’ve finished with that stage, move on to the next group of things to do and repeat step one
Remember, cognitive science has demonstrated that even the most intelligent humans are only capable of keeping 5-7 things in their minds simultaneously. Because of this, we need to make sure that our RACI charts are easy enough to remember.
Learn more: RACI Matrix Vs ARPA Model
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The RACI matrix: Your blueprint for project success
A RACI matrix is a simple, effective means for defining project roles and responsibilities, providing a comprehensive chart of who is responsible, accountable, consulted, and informed every step of the way.
Having managed and rescued dozens of projects, and helped others do so, I’ve noted that there is always one critical success factor (CSF) that has either been effectively addressed or missed/messed up: clarity around the roles and responsibilities for each project participant and key stakeholder. No matter how detailed and complete a project plan may be for any project, confusion or omission of participant roles and responsibilities will cause major problems.
Enter the RACI matrix. The simplest and most effective approach I’ve seen and used to define and document project roles and responsibilities is the RACI model. Integrating the RACI model into an organization’s project life cycle (PLC) creates a powerful synergy that enhances and improves project outcomes.
What is a RACI matrix?
The RACI matrix is a project role and responsibility assignment chart that maps out every task, milestone, or key decision involved in completing a project and assigns which roles are Responsible for each action item, which personnel are Accountable , and, where appropriate, who needs to be Consulted or Informed . The acronym RACI stands for the four roles that stakeholders might play in any project.
In almost 100 percent of my project rescue efforts, I have found that there is no shared understanding of participant roles and responsibilities, nor is there explicit documentation to support it. Establishing such a consensus by employing the RACI model almost always gets a stuck project moving again, and enables the key stakeholders to readily deal with the other issues that require resolution.
[ Learn why IT projects still fail at an alarming rate, beware the 12 project management myths to avoid , and find out how to pick the right project management methodology for your team . | Get the latest project management advice by signing up for our CIO newsletters . ]
RACI matrix roles
The RACI model brings structure and clarity to describing the roles that stakeholders play within a project . The RACI matrix clarifies responsibilities and ensures that everything the project needs done is assigned someone to do it.
The four roles that stakeholders might play in any project include the following:
- Responsible : People or stakeholders who do the work. They must complete the task or objective or make the decision. Several people can be jointly Responsible .
- Accountable : Person or stakeholder who is the “owner” of the work. He or she must sign off or approve when the task, objective or decision is complete. This person must make sure that responsibilities are assigned in the matrix for all related activities. Success requires that there is only one person Accountable , which means that “the buck stops there.”
- Consulted : People or stakeholders who need to give input before the work can be done and signed-off on. These people are “in the loop” and active participants.
- Informed : People or stakeholders who need to be kept “in the picture.” They need updates on progress or decisions, but they do not need to be formally consulted, nor do they contribute directly to the task or decision.
How to create a RACI matrix
The simple process for creating a RACI model includes the following six steps:
- Identify all the tasks involved in delivering the project and list them on the left-hand side of the chart in completion order. For IT projects, this is most effectively addressed by incorporating the PLC steps and deliverables. (This is illustrated in the example below.)
- Identify all the project stakeholders and list them along the top of the chart.
- Complete the cells of the model identifying who has responsibility, accountability and who will be consulted and informed for each task.
- Ensure every task has at least one stakeholder Responsible for it.
- No tasks should have more than one stakeholder Accountable . Resolve any conflicts where there is more than one for a particular task.
- Share, discuss and agree the RACI model with your stakeholders at the start of the project. This includes resolving any conflicts or ambiguities.
RACI matrix example
For purposes of simplification, let’s say your project can be broken down into four discrete tasks, undertaken by a team of application developers, along with a sponsoring project executive, project manager , business analyst , and technical architect.
Step 1 of the process involves mapping out the project as a whole. For this, the project manager is both accountable and responsible for the work at hand. To determine the scope and deliverables of the project , the project manager consults with the project’s executive sponsor and with the business analyst about the process to be overhauled as part of the project. The technical architect and the application developers are subsequently informed of the project plan.
In Step 2, the business analyst must then delve more deeply into the process to help map out each facet of the business process to be overhauled. The business analyst is thus responsible for the task, with the project executive being accountable for signing off on this work. To better understand the technical underpinnings of the current process, the business analyst will consult with the technical architect. The project manager and application developers will then be informed of the conclusions derived from this portion of the project.
Here is an illustration of a simplified RACI model for this example project, taking these first two steps into account:
The subsequent third and fourth tasks involve shaping the new process, again with the business analyst responsible for this work, and the other roles on the team following their same responsibilities when the old process was being analyzed in Step 2. Step 4 sees the technical architect taking over, devising a new architecture that will support the new process, signed off by the executive sponsor, and held accountable by the project manager, who devised the scope and deliverables in Step 1.
RACI matrix template
Templates are available for free on the web for those looking to get started with the RACI model. These are typically geared toward Microsoft Excel or Google Sheets, but can also be available for more specialized software. Here are several popular possibilities:
- Vertex 42 Excel RACI templates
- Projectmanager.com Excel RACI templates
- Smartsheet Excel RACI templates
- ClickUp RACI templates
- Excel Downloads RACI templates
RACI vs. RASCI
RASCI is another type of responsibility assignment matrix used in project management. It retains the four core roles of RACI — Responsible , Accountable , Consulted , and Informed — but adds a fifth: Supportive . The Supportive role in a RASCI chart is responsible for providing assistance to those in the Responsible role. This may involve providing additional resources, expertise, or advice to help the Responsible party complete a particular task. Organizations that choose RASCI often do so to ensure that personnel who may not have direct responsibility or accountability but are nevertheless vital to the success of an activity or project are considered a notable facet (and cost) of the project. Individuals or entities that consult on a particular phase of a project, whether internal or external to the organization, provide an example of Supportive resources.
RACI matrix rules and best practices
Simply creating a RACI matrix is not enough. You must ensure that the matrix maps to a successful strategy. Here, certain rules should be followed, and conflicts and ambiguities in the plan must be hammered out.
When building out your RACI matrix, the following three rules should be applied:
- Every task must have at least one Responsible party.
- To ensure clear decision-making, each task should have only one Accountable person.
- Every team member should have a role on each task, even if it is just to be Informed.
Resolving conflicts and ambiguities in a RACI matrix involves looking across each row and up and down each column for the following:
Analysis for each stakeholder:
- Are there too many R’s : Does one stakeholder have too much of the project assigned to them?
- No empty cells : Does the stakeholder need to be involved in so many of the activities? Can Responsible be changed to Consulted , or Consulted changed to Informed ? I.e., are there too many “cooks in this kitchen” to keep things moving? (And if so, what does that say about the culture within which this project is being managed?)
- Buy-in : Does each stakeholder totally agree with the role that they are specified to play in this version of the model? When such agreement is achieved, that should be included in the project’s charter and documentation.
Analysis for each PLC step or deliverable:
- No R’s : Who is doing the work in this step and getting things done? Whose role is it to take the initiative?
- Too many R’s : Is this another sign of too many “cooks in this kitchen” to keep things moving?
- No A’s : Who is Accountable ? There must be one ‘A’ for every step of the PLC. One stakeholder must be Accountable for the thing happening — “the buck stops” with this person.
- More than one A : Is there confusion on decision rights? Stakeholders with accountability have the final say on how the work should be done and how conflicts are resolved. Multiple A’s invite slow and contentious decision-making.
- Every box filled in : Do all the stakeholders really need to be involved? Are there justifiable benefits in involving all the stakeholders, or is this just covering all the bases?
- A lot of C’s : Do all the stakeholders need to be routinely Consulted , or can they be kept Informed and raise exceptional circumstances if they feel they need to be Consulted ? Too many C’s in the loop really slows down the project.
- Are all true stakeholders included in this model : Sometimes this is more of a challenge to ensure, as it’s an error of omission. This is often best addressed by a steering committee or management team.
RACI matrix in project management
It is the above analyses, which are readily enabled by the use of a RACI matrix, that deliver the real benefit of the model. It is the integration of the model with a specific PLC that ensures that the project is structured for success. Without either component, problems with the structure of the project management process may remain hidden until (or even while…) they cause the project to bog down. Making the time and effort to create a customized PLC/RACI for each significant project is an opportunity to design your project management process for project success.
More on project management:
- Project management guide: Tips, strategies, best practices
- What is a project manager? The lead role for project success
- 5 early warning signs of project failure
- 12 project management myths to avoid
- 16 tips for a smooth switch to agile project management
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With more than 25 years of corporate leadership experience and 6 years of executive coaching expertise, Bob Kantor is the founder of Kantor Consulting Group . Through his company's executive coaching and leadership development programs, Bob supports IT and STEM professionals transitioning from managing technology to leading people with innovation and confidence.
It’s rare for technology-driven organizations today to be limited by or constrained in what they can accomplish based on their technology skills. Rather, it’s the soft skills of those in leadership positions that typically create bottlenecks, miscommunication, re-work and ultimately, projects that are over budget and behind schedule. These are all areas where Bob’s programs enable clients to gain traction and get things turned around.
Bob has experience in leadership coaching for over 150 IT executives and managers at Bloomberg, and over 60 senior IT leaders at companies like DISH Network, Chevron, PayPal, eBay, Toyota, Aetna, Sysco, Unilever, SunTrust Bank, The Walt Disney Company and Molina Health Care.
The opinions expressed in this blog are those of Bob Kantor and do not necessarily represent those of IDG Communications, Inc., its parent, subsidiary or affiliated companies.
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What is a Responsibility Assignment Matrix
By Iterate Team
Last updated: Feb 15, 2023
Table of contents
What is a RAM matrix used for?
How to make a ram or raci chart.
Learn what a Responsibility Assignment Matrix is and how to use one to make all your upcoming projects run smoothly.
A Responsibility Assignment Matrix (RAM), sometimes known as a RACI chart, is a tool used in project management to keep track of all responsibilities assigned to cross-functional teams on a specific task or assignment.
It’s known as a RACI chart because its acronym names the four key roles displayed in the matrix:
- Responsible: Who is the person responsible for completing a task or making a decision?
- Accountable: Who is accountable for the completion of the project overall and will sign off on deliverables and decisions?
- Consulted: Who needs to be consulted to provide input on a particular task or item?
- Informed: Who needs to be kept informed of project progress or completion?
A typical RAM template looks like this:
The RAM matrix is used to document every task, item and decision involved in a project completion process. By keeping everything logged all in one place, a RAM matrix is an invaluable tool to any project manager or company leader for a few reasons.
- Defines clear roles and responsibilities
There is nothing worse than a project being slowed down or stalled because of confusion over who was supposed to do what. In a RAM, every person or team involved can check to see which task or item.
- Streamlines communication
Sometimes explaining directions in person or over a workplace communication tool can get confusing or be interpreted the wrong way. Even worse, one instance of miscommunication can tank an entire project or jeopardize a relationship with a client.
With a RAM, project managers don’t have to waste time directing questions to the responsible stakeholder in charge of making a decision. The chart informs everyone involved exactly who they can go to for answers, cutting out repetitive conversations and notifying the right people at the right time.
- Distributes workloads evenly
No one ever wants to be the one in the group project that has to do everything. Team members with a higher workload are at a greater risk for burnout. A great benefit of a RAM is that everyone can see how the workload for a certain project is distributed. It’s also a great way to be transparent within workflows.
Don’t let the random letters confuse you. Building a RACI chart is surprisingly simple. It can also easily be tweaked to fit your organization and your particular project. According to the work management platform Wrike , here are four steps to follow when building a responsibility assignment matrix:
- Identify all project roles
Start out with a list of everyone involved in a project, including every team, team member, manager and stakeholder.
- Identify all project tasks
Then make a list of all the tasks and items needed to get a project done. These can include deliverables, activities, milestones and decisions.
- Create a chart with a column for each role and a row for each task
In a spreadsheet—or any other tool you’d like—create a simple table by listing each person or role in the columns and each task or deliverable in the rows.
To get the most out of your RACI chart, try to make the roles as personal as possible. For example, instead of naming a role “technical lead,” try to use names, like “Jack.” This will give every person involved a sense of ownership, while also streamlining communication even further.
- Assign “R,” “A,” “C” or “I” to each person involved
Once you have written out the names of each person and task, now comes the important part of assigning RACI to each person involved. Identify who is responsible, who is accountable, who needs to be consulted and who needs to be informed for every task in the project. A role can have more than one letter, but simplify it as much as you can. Bonus step: Add a color to each letter to make the roles stand out even more.
That’s it! You now have made a successful RACI chart. Review with your team and all stakeholders before you initiate a plan, and you are officially on your way to more effective project management.
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Responsibility Assignment Matrix (RAM)
Responsibility Assignment Matrix: this article explains the Responsibility Assignment Matrix in a practical way. After reading you will understand the basics of this powerful project management tool used by management professionals. This article also contains a downloadable and editable template and a free in-depth explanation video.
What is the Responsibility Assignment Matrix or RAM?
Project managers like using a RAM to identify the role of the various members of a project team. This matrix is a structural chart in which is visually made clear (on paper or through project management software) what should be done by whom in cross functional or departmental projects.
In the matrix it is clear what the project tasks, roles and responsibilities are of each of the project team members. It is also referred to as the RACI matrix , VERI matrix or Linear Responsibility Chart (LCR).
It’s often used as an integral part of the Work Breakdown Structure .
RAM video (1-Minute Skill Booster)
Our 1-Minute Skill Booster below will help you get a quick overview on the RAM and at the end of this article you will find an in-depth video on this project management tool.
Responsibility Assignment Matrix example
Despite the simple nature of all information in the matrix memory, it can be very time-consuming to assign each member of the project team with the right tasks and responsibilities.
In addition the appropriate roles must be defined in advance before they are included in the RAM.
Figure 1 – The Responsibility Assignment Matrix (RAM) / RACI Matrix
To do this well and accurately, the matrix can be completed using the following steps:
- Step 1: Identify all the participants and (facilities) supporters of the project.
- Step 2: Identify all the deliverables for the project.
- Step 3: Discuss with all team members how they can support each other to achieve the best performance. It is important to define each participant’s responsibilities so that there will be no misunderstandings on who is responsible for completing the tasks at hand.
- Step 4: The initial draft of the RAM is created, with the activities in the left-hand column and the team members in the project in the first right-hand column. Enter the roles that each person will have in the cells that have been formed. An example of this can be seen in the form of a RACI chart (Responsible, Accountable, Consulted and Informed) above. Note that only one person can be accountable for each task.
- Step 5: Have the participants in the project approve the RAM (in writing). Again to prevent misunderstandings.
- Step 6: Any remarks on changes in the RAM can be filed by the participants in writing. Finally, the responsibility assignment matrix will be reviewed and after approval has been obtained, the project can start.
- Step 7: Interim assessment is important. When it appears that it is better to adjust the RAM, you will have to go back to step 3 and the adjustments must be discussed with all team members.
Responsibility Assignment Matrix and complex projects
The RAM is also suitable for complex projects. When activities are overlooked and the matrix contains incomplete and/or inaccurate information, this will lead to duplicated efforts.
It is therefore advisable to ensure that all information is included in the matrix and that all information is and remains accurate.
The following suggestions contribute to a larger chance of success of a matrix in a complex project:
1. Hierarchy of charts
Divide the RAM into separate graphs so that a distinction can be made according to priorities .
The RAM with the highest levels identifies the high-priority activities within the project.
From this point RAM-graphs can be developed that have been derived from this higher level.
By involving all the members of the project team in the development of the RAM, they will know exactly what is expected of them and they will participate and be (more) committed to using their own specializations.
3. Written representation
By putting the RAM in writing, any mistakes or problems can be identified.
Moreover, the participants in the project will have a better understanding of what their joint participation in the project is.
In a RAM the role of the individual and the role of the group are not separated. The role describes the participation with accompanying tasks of the individual in the project.
Such a role can be performed by several people in a group.
Vice versa, one person may have several roles in the project. This is why several employees can have the role of project manager and one individual may have the role of manager and task performer.
Responsibility Assignment Matrix template
Start visualizing what the tasks and responsibilities are of each team member with this ready to use RAM template.
Download the Responsibility Assignment Matrix template
Responsibility assignment matrix (ram) video (in depth-explainer).
Watch the in-depth video below for a recap of what you’ve just read, so you will remember it more easily!
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What do you think? Is the Responsibility Assignment Matrix in today’s modern project- and stakeholder management? Do you recognize the practical explanation or do you have more additions? What are your success factors for good stakeholder management during a project?
Share your experience and knowledge in the comments box below.
- Project Management Institute (2010). A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge ( PMBOK Guide) . PMI Standards Committee.
- Baker, D. (2009). Multi-Company Project Management: Maximizing Business Results Through Strategic Collaboration . J Ross.
- Cleland, D. and Ireland, L. (2006). Project management: strategic design and implementation . McGraw-Hill .
How to cite this article: Mulder, P. (2012). Responsibility Assignment Matrix (RAM) . Retrieved [insert date] from Toolshero: https://www.toolshero.com/project-management/responsibility-assignment-matrix/
Published on: 03/26/2012 | Last update: 11/01/2022
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Responsibility Assignment Matrix (RACI Matrix) Explained
There’s an old saying that ‘If everyone’s responsible, nobody’s responsible.’ And in project management, it often rings true.
When people don’t know exactly what they – and their colleagues – are responsible for, it’s easy for things to get missed, ignored, or left for others to deal with.
This is especially true nowadays, with projects more complex – and teams more distributed – than ever.
And it’s a situation that leads to confusion, frustration, and, potentially, project failure.
One way to mitigate this is the responsibility assignment matrix – sometimes called the RACI matrix.
In this post we’ll outline the core principles of the RACI Matrix – and explain why it may be a good idea for project managers to put in place for their projects!
What is an RACI matrix?
A RACI matrix is an essential project management tool used to define roles and responsibilities for a project or project task. It’s about defining who’s responsible for projects or tasks, and what level of input is expected of them.
The acronym ‘RACI’ stands for Responsible , Accountable , Consulted, Informed. These are the four categories of involvement in a project, and each individual or team involved in the project is assigned one of these project roles.
Let’s first dig into what they mean…
The Responsible category is for a person or team who is actively involved in completing a task or project. To put it crudely – they’re the ones who are actually ‘doing the work.’
The Accountable category is for the person or team who’s ultimately responsible for the success or failure of the project, task or deliverable. They might not be the ones ‘doing’ the work, but they are the ones who are ultimately accountable for the outcome.
The Consulted category is for teams or people who need to be consulted for their expertise or input along the way. They may not be directly involved in the work, but their input is important. For example – these people might be required to give feedback and sign off, or provide technical advice.
And the Informed category is for people who need to be kept informed of progress. They may provide input on a task or project, but more likely, they just require up-to-date info to understand where things are up to.
By clearly defining roles and responsibilities for a project using a RACI matrix, it’s easier to monitor progress and ensure successful completion.
It also helps to eliminate misunderstandings about who is responsible for what by enshrining this in a clear, visual way.
How to create an RACI matrix
Creating a RACI matrix is easy to do, and there are several templates available online that can be used as a starting point.
The matrix consists of two main elements – a table and a list of tasks, roles and responsibilities for the project or task.
The table is made up of columns for each individual involved in the project, and rows for each task or activity that needs to be completed. Each cell in the table will indicate the role for that person in relation to that particular task. The list should include a description of each task or activity, as well as the roles and responsibilities for each individual involved.
Let’s look at a classic project and consider how those categories would come into effect using the RACI model.
In this example we’ll consider a typical, run-of-the-mill web design project. So we start by adding a column for every person or team involved – we’ll go with client, project manager, web designer, graphic designer, front-end developer, back-end developer, content writers/editors/strategists and a QA team.
Then, down the left-hand column, we list the stages or tasks involved in that project. We’ll keep things broad and go with briefing and project outline, design, look and feel, user experience, front-end user interface, back end functionality and website content
Again, this is pretty broad, but you could also make it incredibly granular, highlighting every single task and every single person – and, actually, the RACI matrix is often at its best when done in this more detailed way.
Then, to complete our RACI matrix, we need to go through each empty box in our chart and fill it out with one of our four letters to denote whether that person or team is Responsible, Accountable, Consulted or Informed.
To further illustrate the idea, let’s look at a different example – designing and executing a content marketing strategy.
In this example you’ll notice that we have some individuals marked as “A&R” – this means they’re both accountable AND responsible. In other words, they’re tasked with doing the work – AND accountable for the results – which demonstrates how, sometimes, people can occupy more than one category in the matrix.
The beauty of this model is that you can read it in a couple of different ways.
You can view it row by row and work out who has what level of responsibility for a particular task.
Or you can use the columns to work out the requirements of a person or team across a whole project. In theory, you could pick out your role, then get a clear overview of all your responsibilities by simply working your way down the list.
Your RACI Matrix x Project.co
RACI charts are a key part of the project management process – particularly for complex projects – and can be managed with project management software like Project.co.
Start by creating your project. Every project can be customised to include the tools you need.
Next, invite your project team – this can be made up of internal team members, client team members, and even freelancers.
The Project Notes section is a great place to leave important info that’s relevant to the whole project. This is a good place to store your RACI matrix.
You can also use the Embed tool to embed documents such as Google Sheets so they’re available from within your project to everyone involved.
You can also include important RACI chart info from within the notes section of each task, as well as attaching tasks to individual people, dates and other important info..
Simply create the tasks you need to complete for your project and assign the responsible person or people to them.
Thanks for reading!
You don’t have to be a business analyst to create a RACI chart and use this powerful method to make your projects more streamlined, simple and efficient.
The bottom line is that a RACI matrix ensures every team member knows what’s expected of them – who’s accountable, who’s doing the work, who needs to be consulted, and who needs to be kept up to date.
And if you’re looking to take your project management game to the next level – sign up to Project.co today and get started for free!
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Your guide to RACI charts, with examples
Can you identify exactly who’s doing what by when for each task, milestone, and deliverable in your project? If not, you might need a RACI chart.
RACI is an acronym to help teams clarify project roles and figure out who the responsible party is for any given task. Whether you've never heard of RACI before or you’re considering creating a RACI chart for your next project, here’s everything you need to know about how to create and use these charts.
What is a RACI chart?
Responsible. This person is directly in charge of the work. There should only ever be one Responsible role per task so you know who to go to with questions or updates. If a task has more than one Responsible person, you can lose clarity and cause confusion. Instead, aim to add additional collaborators as some of the other RACI roles, which can have more than one person.
Accountable. The Accountable person is responsible for overseeing overall task completion, though they may not be the person actually doing the work. There are two ways to assign an Accountable role. Sometimes, the Accountable is the project manager (or even the Responsible, though in that case the person is taking on two different roles during the task workflow). In these cases, the Accountable is responsible for making sure all of the work gets done. In other cases, the Accountable is a senior leader or executive who is responsible for approving the work before it’s considered complete. Like the Responsible role, there should only ever be one Accountable.
Consulted. This will be the person or people who should review and sign off on the work before it’s delivered. There may be multiple Consulted roles for each task, project milestone , or deliverable.
Informed. This is the person or group of people who are informed about the progress and completion of work. They probably are not involved in any other aspect of the deliverable.
When should I create RACI charts?
RACI charts are a helpful way to track each stakeholder’s role for a task, milestone, or deliverable—especially if you’re managing a complex project with many decision makers and subject matter experts. With a RACI chart, you can prevent poor decision making and avoid roadblocks in the approvals process that could impact overall project success.
These charts, while different from PERT charts , are especially useful if your stakeholders may be taking on different roles throughout the project. For example, there could be a stakeholder who is Responsible on one deliverable but Informed on another. With a RACI chart, you can clearly outline these details and make sure everyone knows who’s responsible for what.
Example of a RACI chart
To build a RACI chart, list every task, milestone, or deliverable for your project. Then, identify who the Responsible, Accountable, Consulted, and Informed team members are for each one.
Let’s say you’re updating the homepage on your website. Project stakeholders include:
Head of website
You want to create a RACI chart for five tasks and deliverables:
Update homepage CTAs
Update customer story on homepage
Revamp website design
Improve homepage loading speed
Update homepage design
The RACI chart would look like:
Accountable: Web developer
Consulted: Head of website
Revamp video on homepage
Responsible: Web developer
Informed: Copywriter & Designer
Pros and cons of RACI charts
Ultimately, the question is: should you create a RACI chart? While RACI charts are a useful tool to identify project responsibilities, they can get a little cumbersome over the lifecycle of a project. Here are the pros and cons of creating a RACI chart for your team’s work:
The benefits of RACI charts
Clear project roles and responsibilities can help your team move fast and reduce confusion about who’s working on what. With a RACI chart, you can ensure you don’t have two team members working on the same thing. As a result, you’ll have an easier time collaborating with your team.
RACI charts are also particularly helpful when the decision-making process is split between tasks. There might be scenarios where the Informed on one task or milestone is the Responsible or Consulted on another—in order to have that clearly defined, it’s helpful to track this work in a RACI chart.
RACI chart pitfalls (and how to avoid them)
RACI models focus on the granular, instead of capturing work at the project level. You might know who the Consulted is on a particular task—which is helpful—but knowing that doesn’t help you understand how various stakeholders interact with the broader project work.
Additionally, if you attempt to write out each task and each role, your RACI chart can get bulky. Worse, if your project changes in some way, your RACI chart would immediately become outdated. That can make it hard for you to gain real-time clarity about where each task is in your project workflow.
RACI charts are limited because they aren’t able to adapt to your project needs in real time. In order to establish clear expectations and eliminate confusion on the project level, you need a project management tool .
Take your RACI chart to the next level
With project management software, every task has an assignee—that’s the Responsible. You can see work on the project level, so the Accountable and Informed don’t have to check in via email or status meetings. And, for any approvals you need from your Consulted, you can track reviews and approvals in one place. That way, your entire RACI team has a central source of truth for all of the work being done.
Instead of having your RACI chart separate from where the work is happening, project management tools capture the topic, assignee, and other important information like the task due date or relative importance. That way, your entire project team has visibility into who’s doing what by when—and you’re not relying on a single person to manage and update your RACI chart. Project management tools update in real time, so you can see exactly where you are in the approval process.
Track who’s doing what by when
Clear team roles and responsibilities help you hit your deliverables on time. Tracking different and complex stakeholder responsibilities in a RACI chart can help you do that—but RACI charts are just the beginning. Learn more about work management , and how your team can benefit.
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Responsibility Assignment Matrix: Template, Example & Benefits
Home Blog Project Management Responsibility Assignment Matrix: Template, Example & Benefits
Your team is the most crucial resource in completing a job. They must adhere to the project's schedule and budget. Controlling the project requires everyone involved to understand their roles and duties when carrying out tasks and accomplishing project objectives. How can all the participants in a project be coordinated so that they are aware of what they are doing and do not prevent others from carrying out their tasks? An assignment of responsibility matrix can be useful.
Your project will have a productive crew thanks to an assignment matrix. You can take an online PMP course to learn the details included in RAM, Responsibility Assignment Matrix in project management, and Responsibility Assignment Matrix example, to advance your career.
What is a Responsibility Assignment Matrix in Project Management?
So, what is the responsibility assignment matrix? A Responsibility Assignment Matrix (RAM), sometimes referred to as a RACI chart or RACI matrix, in project management identifies all relevant stakeholders and specifies roles for cross-functional teams and their level of involvement in a project. Each letter in the acronym RACI, which stands for Responsible, Accountable, Consulted, and Informed, refers to a different team member in the Responsibility Assignment Matrix in Project Management.
The team member that oversees finishing the assignment is the person responsible for the RAM, Responsibility Assignment Matrix. The person in charge may be tasked with gathering all the visual and data assets required to put together the presentation if your team is working on a pitch deck (Responsible for executing the task).
The responsible team member distributes the tasks to the other team members and ensures that they are finished accurately and on time. This team member oversees making sure the project is completed on schedule and that the tasks are fairly distributed among the accountable parties (Has governing & directing authority).
A responsible party in Responsibility Assignment Matrix Project Management may frequently need to consult an expert, who serves as the consulted person, to finish certain responsibilities. A professional analysis of the consulted party is required when someone is tasked with gathering marketing statistics for a presentation. They also need to ensure that the data the responsible party is required to submit is accurate (Provide insights, analysis or expert judgment).
The informed party needs to be aware of when the major project components are finished even though they may not be directly involved in all the steps to ensure that everything is running smoothly. The informed team member must be aware of any delays or stalls in the project as they must complete their tasks (Updated with project information and outcome).
Responsibility Assignment Matrix (RAM) Goal in Project Management
The goal of the Responsibility Assignment Matrix (RAM) is to clearly define roles and responsibilities of everyone on a project team. This ensures that everyone understands their role and how it fits into the bigger picture. RAM also allows for quick identification of whom to contact when an issue arises. It might also be applied within a working group to establish authority levels, roles, and duties for tasks.
The matrix format displays each person's associated actions and each person's associated people. To avoid confusion, this makes sure that there is only one person responsible for each task. It is also important to outline the dates and reminders for each participant, so that they are aware of their deliverables/plans to fulfill the deliverables. The best Project Management Certification programs online will teach you how to make efficient decisions and effectively use RAM.
How to Create a Responsibility Assignment Matrix?
A Responsibility Assignment Matrix (RAM) is a table that shows the tasks needed to be completed as part of a project, who is responsible for each task, and when the task needs to be completed. Making a matrix to distribute responsibilities is not as challenging as getting everyone on board with their respective jobs and responsibilities.
You should therefore involve your staff in the process, receive their feedback, and eventually secure their buy-in without expending excessive time and effort on it. You will have a successful responsibility assignment if you follow these instructions to ensure that everyone is on the same page.
- List every person involved in the project, including the team, stakeholders, and everyone in between.
- List each project deliverable that you can think of. To make sure you do not overlook any, use a work breakdown framework.
- To discuss how to carry out the tasks and produce the deliverables, meet with the team members. The duty and authority of the team for each assignment must be discussed.
- Utilizing a table with the project tasks specified in the left-hand column, create a Responsibility Assignment Matrix. Print the names of everyone involved in the project across the top.
- Assign whether a project team member is liable, accountable, consulted, or informed where the tasks meet them.
- Share the completed Responsibility Assignment Matrix Template Word with the project team and stakeholders. If necessary, conduct a meeting to ensure that everyone is aware of their responsibilities for the project. Print a copy, and if you are working in a common location, post it.
Developing Responsibility Assignment Matrix (RAM) Best Practices
The best practices for developing a Responsibility Assignment Matrix (RAM) will vary depending on the specific project and organization. However, some tips on how to develop a RAM matrix effectively include the following:
- Define the project scope and objectives clearly, so that all stakeholders understand the parameters of the project and what is expected to be accomplished.
- Assign clear roles and responsibilities to individuals and teams so that everyone knows who is responsible for what aspect of the project.
- Make sure that the Responsibility Assignment Matrix PMP is kept up to date as the project progresses so that everyone is aware of any changes in roles and responsibilities.
- Use the RAM matrix as a tool to help identify potential risks and issues related to the project so that they can be addressed early on.
- One stakeholder leads a task.
- The lesser number of people are accountable, the better.
- Act efficiently with meetings.
- Continuous communication.
- Stakeholder agreement on final RAM.
Responsibility Assignment Matrix Examples and Templates
- Responsibility Assignment Matrix (RACI)
- RACI-VS (Responsible, Accountable, Consulted, Informed- “V”erification and “S”ign off)
- RASCI (Responsible, Accountable, Support, Consulted, Informed)
- RAC (Responsible, Accountable, Consulted)
- ARCI (Accountable, Responsible, Consulted, Informed)
- RATSI (Responsibility, Authority, Task, Support, Informed)
- PACSI (Perform, Accountable, Control, Suggest, Informed)
- RACIQ (Responsible, Accountable, Consulted, Informed, Quality Review)
- DACI (Driver, Approver, Contributors, Informed)
- CAIRO (Consulted, Accountable, Informed, Responsible, Omitted)
Downloadable Responsibility Assignment Matrix Template Excel
Download the Responsibility Assignment Matrix Template (xlsx) here!
This Responsibility Assignment Matrix template is available for free in both Excel and OpenDocument Spreadsheet formats. The template can be completely modified using Microsoft Excel and adjusted to meet the needs of your project. To make it simple to understand what is required of each worker on each task, the template employs conditional formatting to change the color of each cell.
Download a Printable Responsibility Assignment Matrix PDF
Download the Responsibility Assignment Matrix Template (PDF) here!
If you intend to design a Responsibility Assignment Matrix (RAM), you may require samples and templates to use as a guide, regardless of whether you are managing an event, a construction project, or a restaurant. Some of the templates are-
- Responsibility Assignment Matrix Sample
- Responsibility Assignment Matrix for Construction Project Template
- Basic Responsibility Assignment Matrix Sample
- Responsibility Assignment Matrix in PDF
Benefits of Responsibility Assignment Matrix
There are many benefits of the Responsibility Assignment Matrix. One benefit is that it helps to ensure that everyone on a project team understands their roles and responsibilities. This can help to prevent misunderstandings and conflict between team members. Another benefit of using RAM is that it can help to improve communication between team members.
By clearly defining roles and responsibilities, team members will know whom to go to for specific information or tasks. This can help to avoid confusion and delays. Lastly, RAM can help to improve project management by providing a clear overview of who is responsible for what. This can help project managers to identify potential problems or areas where there may be a lack of resources.
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A Responsibility Assignment Matrix (RAM) is a tool used to identify and define the roles and responsibilities of individuals and groups within an organization. It is a means of clarifying who is responsible for what and ensuring that everyone understands their roles and responsibilities. RAM can be used to create accountability and ownership for tasks and projects, and to identify potential areas of conflict.
It is a valuable tool for effective project management and can help to ensure that everyone involved in a project is aware of their roles and responsibilities. It can also help to identify potential areas of conflict and ensure that tasks are properly assigned. The KnowledgeHut online PMP course will give you an insight into the Responsibility Assignment Matrix and can be a helpful tool for any project manager.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
1. what is included in a responsibility assignment matrix.
A Responsibility Assignment Matrix (RAM) is a tool used to help define and assign roles and responsibilities for a project or process. The matrix typically includes a list of tasks or deliverables and the people or groups responsible for each.
2. What can a Responsibility Assignment Matrix (RAM) eliminate?
RAM eliminates ambiguity and confusion over who is responsible for what on a project. It also provides a clear overview of who is responsible for each task, making it easier to hold team members accountable.
3. What does a Responsibility Assignment Matrix not show?
The duty assignment matrix links resources to the tasks or work packages they must do, but it does not indicate when they will be required to do their work.
Kevin D. Davis is a seasoned and results-driven Program/Project Management Professional with a Master's Certificate in Advanced Project Management. With expertise in leading multi-million dollar projects, strategic planning, and sales operations, Kevin excels in maximizing solutions and building business cases. He possesses a deep understanding of methodologies such as PMBOK, Lean Six Sigma, and TQM to achieve business/technology alignment. With over 100 instructional training sessions and extensive experience as a PMP Exam Prep Instructor at KnowledgeHut, Kevin has a proven track record in project management training and consulting. His expertise has helped in driving successful project outcomes and fostering organizational growth.
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Responsibility Assignment Matrix Defined
What is the Responsibility Assignment Matrix?
So you’ve constructed your work breakdown structure (WBS) and your organizational breakdown structure (OBS) . You have a schedule tentatively made. What’s missing? Perhaps you should create a responsibility assignment matrix as well.The responsibility assignment matrix links activities to resources . It makes sure that every task is completed by someone. The matrix itself is a chart you can create using Microsoft Excel listing human resources across the top and activities down the left-hand side. The matrix can be as simple as placing a check mark under the resources name for a particular task, or it can get more complicated, indicating precisely which role any given resource has in completing the task.
Why Should you Use a Responsibility Assignment Matrix?
I already mentioned the benefit of knowing exactly whom is responsible for what when using a responsibility assignment matrix. This, while the main reason for creating this beneficial chart, isn’t the only reason you might want to create it. By creating a responsibility assignment matrix, you can quickly see whether you have enough resources to complete the project in the time allotted. You can also avoid confusion - especially if you use the roles listed below - over who is assigned to do what when. This prevents Joe from saying “But I thought it was assigned to Mary.” Finally, when trying to gain funding for your project, you can paint a realistic picture for perspective investors by showing exactly how many resources are required to finish the project.
How do you Create Responsibility Assignment Matrix?
The first step in creating a responsibility assignment matrix is to decompose your project and create a work breakdown structure. Once you have completed this important first step, you will know what the project deliverables will be. If you compose an organizational breakdown structure - breaking the project down into a hierarchy of departments, it will facilitate the process of assigning deliverables to responsible parties. Creating this second chart is an option that is highly recommended.
Once you have the list of deliverables, open an Excel file. Down the left-hand side list each deliverable. If there were intermediate deliverables discovered in the process of creating the work breakdown structure, list those as well.
After listing each deliverable down the side, list each resource across the top of the table.
Now, you will assign deliverables to resources using the following code for roles:
R: Responsible - this is the resource that owns the work. Each deliverable should have at least one person responsible for it.
A: Accountable - this is the person who approves the work. There is only one accountable resource.
C: Consulted - this is the person who delivers information required to complete the work.
I: Informed: This is the person who is informed of the progress of the deliverable.
S: Supportive: This is the person who provides work in addition to the responsible party.
V: Verifies: This is the person who ensures that the work meets standards.
F: Final Authority: This person gives the final stamp on the completed work.
In assigning roles, you will use at least the first four listed above RACI. Assign each deliverable to at least one responsible party. Assign each deliverable exactly one accountable party. Continue until everything has been assigned. Distribute the responsibility assignment matrix monist the staff and make explicit your expectations for each of them.
Responsibility Assignment Matrix
A Responsibility Assignment Matrix (RAM) is sometimes called a RACI Chart, or Responsibility Matrix.
There are several avoidable excuses in the project management world, such as:
- I didn’t think I was supposed to be doing that!
- I thought (name other employee here) was doing that!
- But the contractor was responsible for that!
The Responsibility Assignment Matrix will prevent this from happening on your project!
Responsibility Assignment Matrix Definition
The Association for Project Management (APM) definition is as follows:
A diagram or chart showing assigned responsibilities for elements of work. It is created by combining the work breakdown structure (WBS) with the organisational breakdown structure (OBS).
The APM (BoK 6th edition) further states that a RAM is used to assign the work packages to the people responsible for creating the project’s output.
So when you have a list of those involved in the project ( the OBS ) and the tasks in the project ( the WBS ) you can create your matrix!
Check what your organisation calls it, and use the same terminology.
A Responsibility Assignment Matrix could be at department and work-package level for larger projects, or individual people and task level for smaller projects.
A RACI chart is a matrix of the project tasks (from the WBS) against the people in the project (from the OBS). It ensures that everybody knows what they are expected to deliver, by giving every task has an accountable task owner.
RACI stands for;
- Responsible – I’m involved with this task
- Accountable – I’m accountable (own) this task
- Consult – Consult me before you do anything
- Inform – Inform me of your intentions and progress
Other definitions can be found in text books: Primary and Secondary ownership, Owner and Support, RASCI, etc.
Interestingly, there is some debate about the difference between “Accountable” and “Responsible” and an indication that originally the “A” was for Approve which does make some sense. Personally, I advocate the use of Accountable for one, and only one person on each task.
Creating a Responsibility Matrix
There are several tools that you can use to create these matrices. It really depends on the application that you have your task list available in. A list of tasks in Microsoft Project can be copied and pasted into other applications.
- A WORD Table could be used. However you may be limited to the width of your paper, so this may be a problem for a large project.
- An EXCEL Spreadsheet is a good choice, however care must be taken on setting up a ‘Print Area’ to share the document. (Print to pdf could be used)
Consider how you are going to share the matrix with the project team and other stakeholders when you create it.
One of the best ways to populate the matrix is at a project team meeting, asking for staff to state their involvement on a task by task basis. this will create a dialogue around each task – the start of project communication .
Responsibilities in Microsoft Project
Although you can assign resources to tasks in Microsoft Projec t, you cannot define their roles in the RACI type format.
Microsoft Project Resource Names
Personally, I encourage people to assign the accountable owner first, so that the first name on the Gantt chart is the accountable task owner.
I wrote about assignments in Microsoft Project in a previous blog .
Knowing that every task has an owner is vital if the project is to be completed on time. The Responsibility Assignment Matrix is the tool to use in order to make sure that task ownership is clear.
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What is the Responsibility Assignment Matrix (RAM)?
The Responsibility Assignment Matrix or RAM is an essential tool used in project management. It is a document that clearly outlines the roles and responsibilities of every team member involved in a project.
Project managers use an assignment matrix to define cross-functional teams’ performance within the project’s and processes’ bounds. When responding to a request for a proposal, a duty assignment matrix may be requested (RFP). The RACI matrix (responsible, accountable, consulted, and informed) is another responsibility assignment matrix.
Responsible : Indicates who is in charge of carrying out the work after being allocated to them. It eliminates the chances of confusion regarding who is responsible to do the particular activity. In this way, different groups or parties do not blame each other for any errors or mistakes taking place during the project.
Accountable : Identifies the group which has the decision-making authority and how that authority is distributed across the project team. Consulted : Lists everyone who can help with the job, from team members to stakeholders. They are consulted with crucial decisions about the tasks, however, they are not responsible for the outcome. Informed : Keeps track of who is informed on what in terms of development and performance and when and how that information is shared.
This builds a network of links between project team members and activities. Several assignment matrices for various project levels may be utilized depending on the size of the project.
How to create a Responsibility Assignment Matrix?
It’s not as tough to create a responsibility assignment matrix as it is to get everyone on board with their jobs and duties. As a result, you’ll want to include your staff in the process, obtain their feedback, and finally, buy in without devoting too much time and effort to it. You’ll have a successful duty assignment if you follow these steps to ensure everyone is on the same page.
- Identify all project participants, including team members, stakeholders, and everyone.
- Make a list of all the project’s deliverables. Use a job breakdown framework to ensure you don’t forget anything.
- Meet with team members to discuss how to carry out the tasks that will result in the deliverables. Every job should be considered in terms of the team’s authority and responsibility.
- Create a table using the project tasks specified in the left-hand column to create the duty assignment matrix. Add the names of everyone involved in the project across the top.
- Assign whether they are liable, accountable, consulted, or informed when the duties meet the project team member.
- When the duty assignment matrix is complete, share it with the project team and stakeholders , and organise a meeting if required to ensure that everyone knows their role in the project.
Why create a Responsibility Assignment Matrix
The assignment matrix specifies what each team member is accountable for, including not just their responsibilities but also how they contribute to the project. Some will be assigned specific duties, others will give work assistance, and others will be designated as decision-makers. These groups each have their own identity and purpose inside the project to steer it to a successful conclusion.
Projects run more smoothly when there is clear communication. An assignment matrix helps team members communicate more effectively and transparently by developing a structure that ensures everyone is up-to-date and on the same page. Excessive meetings and perplexing exchanges may bog down a project as individuals try to figure out what they’re meant to be doing. The use of a duty assignment matrix is beneficial, but project management software that links teams in real-time is preferable.
Project Manager organises project data by allowing teams to attach files to tasks easily, and our unlimited file storage keeps essential project papers accessible at all times. Commenting on tasks can save time, and tagging other project team members establish a communication mechanism that minimizes duplicates and needless meetings.
What is the importance of the Responsibility Assignment Matrix?
The importance of RAM lies in its ability to provide clarity on who is responsible for completing specific tasks within a project. This ensures that everyone understands what is expected of them and avoids confusion or duplication of work. The matrix also allows for effective communication among team members by providing a clear understanding of who they need to liaise with when working on specific tasks.
RAM helps organizations track progress effectively as it provides an overview of who has completed what tasks, enabling supervisors to monitor individual performance better.
Best Practices for Developing Responsibility Assignment Matrix
Developing a Responsibility Assignment Matrix (RAM) is crucial for project management and ensuring clear accountability. Here are some best practices to consider when creating a RAM:
Define project objectives : Clearly establish the project’s goals, objectives, and deliverables. This will serve as the foundation for assigning responsibilities.
Identify project activities: Break down the project into specific tasks or activities. Ensure that each activity is defined clearly and has a tangible outcome.
Determine roles and responsibilities: Identify all the key stakeholders involved in the project, including team members, departments, or external parties. Clearly define their respective roles and responsibilities.
Use a matrix structure: Utilize a matrix structure where the rows represent project activities or deliverables, and the columns denote the various stakeholders involved in the project.
Assign responsible parties: Assign responsibility to each stakeholder for each activity or deliverable in the matrix by indicating whether they are accountable (A), responsible (R), consulted (C), or informed (I). Use proper clarifications if needed.
Engage stakeholders in the assignment process: Involve key stakeholders in assigning responsibilities. This will ensure better ownership, clarity, and alignment among team members.
Ensure clarity and mutual understanding: Review assignments with individual team members to ensure everyone is aware of their responsibilities and there is no ambiguity.
Communicate effectively: Share the finalized RAM with all relevant stakeholders to ensure everyone is on board and understands their role within the project.
Regularly review and update: As projects progress and evolve, periodically review and update the RAM to reflect any changes in roles or new tasks that may arise.
Seek feedback from team members: Encourage open communication among team members regarding their assigned responsibilities in order to maintain effectiveness throughout the project lifecycle.
Use visual aids: Consider using visual aids such as colours or symbols to easily differentiate between different levels of responsibility or status updates within the RAM.
Integration with project management software tools: Consider using project management software that incorporates RAM functionality. This can simplify the process of creating, updating, and sharing the matrix with team members.
Align RAM with other project management tools: Ensure that the RAM aligns with other key project management tools such as the work breakdown structure (WBS), project schedule, and communication plan.
Provide training and support: Train team members on how to use and interpret the RAM effectively. Provide ongoing support to address any questions or concerns that may arise.
Review and improve accessibility: Make sure that all stakeholders can easily access and understand the RAM by keeping it up-to-date, utilizing user-friendly formats, and sharing it through accessible platforms.
These best practices will allow you can develop a well-structured Responsibility Assignment Matrix that provides clarity, accountability and facilitates effective project execution.
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Everything You Should Know About Responsibility Assignment Matrix!
28 Oct 2023
Table of Contents
What is responsibility assignment matrix.
- What Is the Difference Between RAM and RACI?
4 Step Process to Develop Responsibility Assignment Matrix
Benefits of using responsibility assignment matrix.
- Want to Achieve End Goal Like RAM in Your Academics? Take Our Expertâs Help!
Assigning task and handling a team are core responsibilities of a project manager, and to achieve success, using a tool is beneficial. Responsibility assignment matrix can help a manager to achieve those defined goals, but are you unaware of the term, or do you know its actual usage? If yes, do not worry; the upcoming information will clarify all your doubts. Thus, without wasting a single minute, hop on to the next section to understand this tool or concept in detail with the help of Instant Assignment Help experts. Our professionals always provide up-to-date information, which means there will persist no doubt in future regarding this tool.
A responsibility assignment matrix is a tool in project management that lists out all the stakeholders, responsibilities among cross-functional teams, and to what extent every team will be involved in a project. It is beneficial to use this tool in a large-scale project because it clarifies individual roles and responsibilities and provides a clear-cut direction. Thus, look at each letter closely and understand the summary of RAM.
The responsible is the person or member of the team who should finish or accomplish the task. For example, if a team member has been assigned to pitch about the business, the responsible has to collect all the data and combine requisite images for a better presentation.
The accountable is that person in the team who assigns every task to team members and ensures that it gets finished on time without any delay. In a nutshell, accountable ensures timeliness of equal division of work to the responsible.
While working on a project, a responsible has to consult or seek help from an expert. Also, it means the consulted party has to provide their opinion on the subject matter with the assurance that the information provided is correct and genuine.
The informed party is never directly involved in the project, but they should know the complete information so that they have an image that everything is running smoothly. Also, this member should know if there is a delay in the task because, in the end, targets need to be completed.
So, now that you are well-versed in the basic definition, it is time to explore the differences between RAM and RACI.
What Is the Difference Between RAM and RACI?
In your research stage, you must have observed the terms RAM and RACI used interchangeably, but these are not the same. RAM refers to a framework in which an individual gets delegated tasks. On the other hand, RACI is a popular form where different individuals get one of the RACI, which means responsibility, accountable, consulted, and informed. In other words, RACI is a subset of RAM. We hope you have understood the differences between both, but that is not enough. Do not skip the information stated in the next section to know the complete process of developing a responsible assignment matrix.
It is evident that improper communication can create a mess; thus, how to avoid it? Get an answer to it by reading the four-step step process mentioned in the next section.
The deliverables mean what a project expects or wants; thus, there should be a proper breakdown of it. Here are a few examples to help you understand or interpret deliverables better.
- Examine Training Needs
- Analyse current work
- Recommend new practice
- The organisation of the training
- Identify resources
- Preparation of schedule
- Manage training
- Evaluation of the end goal
- Analyse results
- Differences after new practices implementation
It is essential to map out different individuals involved in a project. Once it gets sorted, a delegation of tasks becomes easy based on the memberâs area of expertise.
Create Responsibility Matrix
After a project manager identifies both the pointers mentioned above, it is time to create a responsibility matrix. The criteria remain by stating the deliverable in the column section and people in the row section.
When the final responsibility matrix is prepared, a manager should communicate it effectively or put it in an area where every member will see it closely and regularly. It will keep them updated regularly and motivate them to do work.
It is how a project manager should work on a responsibility matrix. As you can see, organisation is required in any field, be it corporate or academic. Thus, to stay on track every time and to see remarkable results, do not hesitate to hire assignment writers because they stand on both pointers. Also, there are many benefits of using this tool, get an insight about the same in the next section.
There are many benefits of using a responsibility assignment matrix. Some of them are as follows:
- The responsibility assignment matrix allows everyone to see their work and motivates them to start now.
- It allows team members to understand their role and know how they contribute towards the end or final goal.
- It becomes easy for project managers to not get confused and work effectively by taking a look at the table.
- The responsibility assignment matrix encourages employees to contribute towards the company mission as they fit into the operations of the organisation.
These are some of the benefits of using a responsibility assignment matrix. Thus, we hope you gain clarity on this topic, but if you want the same to happen in your academics, too, do not hesitate to take our expertâs help. Know why in the next section.
Want to Achieve End Goal Like RAM in Your Academics? Take Our Expertâs Help!
Until now, you have seen how it is possible to accomplish the targets using the RAM tool in project management. The same applies to students like you who finish academic tasks despite many challenges. In such a case, it is advisable to either stay organised from the start or take assignment help from experts. The professionals possess immense knowledge in their subject area and advise you with management tips so that you can submit the final document to the professor without any delay. Moreover, there is a guarantee of getting A+ grades; thus, do not give it a second thought if performing your best is your final goal.
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