RACI Matrix 101

August 2, 2022

Perhaps the term RACI Matrix means nothing to you, or maybe you’re familiar but haven’t put it to practice quite yet. Either way, we’ll provide the basics so you can determine how building one of your own can ultimately help optimize your workflows. 

First, let’s break down the acronym: 

Responsible - the employees who actually do the work and/or drive the project to completion

Accountable - the project/process owner who can delegate, but ultimately owns the results

Consulted - employees who are “looped in” but aren’t doing the work or making critical decisions

Informed - employees who must be notified at key stages of a project/process

Cross-functional projects require clarity and intention with regards to roles

These words describe four of the critical role definitions within a business process or project. Now that you understand the building blocks, let’s explore how RACI matrices are helpful. 

We’ve all experienced the “too many cooks” phenomenon; without structure to a process or project, it’s easy to deviate from the original goals or objectives. The loudest voice in the room, even if not responsible nor accountable for the success of the project, can have outsized influence on decisions. A RACI matrix will make certain each step of the work is being done by appropriate parties. Other benefits include streamlined communication, elimination of confusion and frustration, better distribution of workload and clarity of purpose/objectives. 

Ex. RACI Matrix

With that background, let’s explore the steps in building one for your business process:

1) Start by identifying each stakeholder along the top of the matrix (i.e. project champion, project lead, contributor 1, contributor 2, etc.)

2) Identify all the tasks, either in granular detail or in larger, high-level buckets. You can always add sub-tasks later. 

3) Fill in the matrix! Use the letters R, A, C and I to indicate the role of each stakeholder relative to the task/stage within the process. 

4) Clean up the matrix and by making sure you don’t have any blanks or too much overlap! 

5) Get sign-off! You spent all this time planning the perfect matrix, don’t forget to make sure there’s alignment with those actually participating in it. 

In Vsimple’s discovery process, we adopt a version of the RACI Matrix to help determine when collaborators are added to projects, how work queues are organized and who we notify based on various actions or status changes. Knowing the distinction between responsible, accountable, consulted and informed means we can establish a much more efficient way to execute business processes in our platform. 

Want our help building one for your organization? Get in touch and we’d be happy to assist!