Ambiguous on the roles and responsibilities of your project participants and key stakeholders? No matter how clear your project plan is if you have not defined or missed any of their roles and responsibilities you are setting the stage for trouble in your project. As a project manager, I have worked on several projects ensuring that the project team to deliver, “What is expected.” Believe me; it’s not as simple as it looks. I had faced difficulties at the beginning where the team was unsure about the roles and expectations. It was difficult for me to get a commitment from them. This resulted in conflicts and problems which affected the project delivery.
So, it was clear that defining and documenting the roles and responsibilities of the team is a critical success factor in a project. Discovering various tools and models I have come through the RACI model or the RACI matrix, a modest and active method for delegation and assigning everyday jobs. It has helped me to create a synergy and develop the project result.
So, what is a RACI Matrix?
RACI matrix is a delegation chart that helps to map every step of the project in detail to avoid confusion and misunderstanding.
The technique used to assign the responsibilities & tasks to team and stakeholders is known as RAM. RAM stands for “Responsibility Assignment Matrix.” One of the broadly used RAM tools is the RACI chart, also called a RACI table or RACI diagram. RACI is definite as “RACEY.”
RACI matrix is a commanding tool in the project manager collection for project management. RACI reduces the role or task-related uncertainty among the team members. It clearly defines the ownership, level of responsibilities, whom to report, when to involve a project manager and when they should exercise their decision. If you are looking for actual ways to use RACI matrix for your projects, then I would recommend you read this article cautiously till the end.
Suggested Read: Roles and Responsibilities of the project manager
What does RACI stand for?
RACI is an acronym, which magnifies as;
RACI participates the tasks or deliverables from WBS (Work Breakdown Structure) & OBS roles (Organization Breakdown Structure). It helps to set the expectations of the people involved in the project.
What are the RACI roles and responsibilities?
Now, let’s understand each of the RACI elements in detail:
These are the project individuals, who act on the project tasks and produce deliverables. They take the responsibility to get the tasks done by carrying out the work. There can be more than one person responsible for a single task or deliverable depending on the task complexity.
Individuals, who take final ownership of job delivery, are accountable. They ensure that responsible resources are delivering the task as planned. They are the “owner” of the task assigned. They are answerable for the successful completion & delivery of tasks as per the schedule. They should also ensure that all the related activities to the task are assigned in the matrix. It’s good to have one person accountable for the successful completion of the task so that we do not fall into the trap “everybody’s responsibility is no one’s.”
These are the roles of individuals, who need to be consulted for necessary inputs and approvals before the work is done or signed off. They don’t carry out the project tasks directly but give consultation and assistance necessary to execute them. They are usually a group of subject matter experts who are in constant touch for the smooth functioning of the project.
Also read: Deadly qualities of a project manager
This role doesn’t involve in project tasks or its conclusion. They always need to be kept in the loop to make them aware of project status. They are either influencer of the project tasks or the impacted parties by the project deliverables. Keeping them informed frequently as planned, can win their support in project execution & change management.
Advantages or profits of the RACI matrix:
There are many advantages of RACI matrix in any project
1.Sets clear expectations:
RACI matrix helps the project managers to set perfect opportunities from the team and other project roles. Project members are aware of their responsibilities, decision-making authorities, and deliverables, that have to be produced by them. They all know,
who is going to carry out the work;
who will give the final approval;
who is going to support the work for each task;
- Brings synergy:
In the RACI matrix, the whole team is clear about their roles as well as other’s roles. This helps the team to realize the interdependencies they have to deliver a project. Thus encouraging them to collaborate and work together to deliver results.
- Strengthens communication:
By transfer, the right person with the right skill for a project task, project manager decreases the risk of disappointment. Identifying the limited, suitable and expert people for consultation reduces the time consumed in a lot of approvals. The consultants always work in tandem with the responsible team members helping them to complete their tasks in time. Also, RACI ensures communication about the task status to all the members in the informed role.
- Avoid the chances of work overload:
One can argue if there are too many project tasks assigned to any individual in RACI mapping. Later, RACI gives the occasion to look into work overload for any specific resource. In such a case RACI matrix can be reconsidered to see, whether some of the tasks can be allocated to any other less engaged separate in the resource pool.
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