It is important to have a clear understanding of the roles and responsibilities in project management, especially in large teams with members from various departments. RACI matrix provides a good tool for eliminating confusion and allowing those involved to fulfill their roles in a more timely and effective manner, which leads to project completion at a more desirable rate.
RACI is an acronym for Responsible, Accountable, Consulted and Informed. Responsible refers to the individual that is executing the activity. Accountable refers to the person who makes authority decisions and approves work. Consult refers to the individuals that are consulted when activities or decisions are being made or analyzed. Inform refers to the group of people who must be updated on the actions or decisions in a process.
A RACI matrix is advantageous to an organization because it clearly shows if there are not enough, or too many, responsibilities in relation to each role. It also allows those involved to be aware of the responsibilities and the accountability of each activity. It makes it easier to inform all the right people and often allows for better communication to take place instead of misunderstandings. It also saves a significant amount of time by only involving those that are necessary at the appropriate times.
The best way to implement a RACI matrix is to confirm that each task has a designated individual fulfilling the role. It is possible that more than one role is given to the same individual but this should only be limited to roles that are not vital and are not difficult to complete. In order to keep things stress-free and simple, each task should only have one person in the “accountable” section, despite the fact that it is okay to share responsibilities if it is necessary.
If many individuals are involved in the “consulted” category, it is essential to evaluate and confirm whether or not all the individuals are necessary. Those that are not vital to the “consulted” category can be moved to the “informed” category in order to save time in communication. A RACI matrix is an excellent tool to use for project management that makes it easier for teams to communicate and complete a project at a much faster pace.
About the author:
Shruti Bhat PhD MBA Certified Lean Six Sigma Black Belt is Pharmaceutical R&D and Continuous Improvement Director, Innoworks Canada
Shruti leads path-breaking product development programs such as Complex Generics, Nanotechnology and Targeted delivery systems for pharmaceuticals and natural products. Her mantra is to "Shorten development timelines, build quality-by-design, lean processes and bring products fast- to- market". Shruti integrates her proficiency in Design Thinking, Lean, Kaizen and other Continuous Improvement methodologies to improve R&D processes, productivity and profitability.
Shruti is Product Development & Continuous Improvement Advisor to several start ups, mid-size and growing firms in Canada, USA, India, Africa and other Emerging markets. Shruti has authored six books and is an invited speaker at several conferences and workshops.
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