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What is RACI matrix in project management

RACI stands for Responsible, Accountable, Consulted and Informed.

Responsible means who owns the project or task, and is answerable for the completion of the same. For Eg project manager, product owner

Accountable is a person who signs off on the work that is completed and also judges the quality of the work done. For eg Business Analyst, all teams for their respective stages 

Consulted is a person who has the knowledge of the subject and hence his help/support is taken to complete the task. For eg, BA consults design team at the time of validating requirements

Informed is a person who is just informed about the status of the work or who must track the status, same need not be consulted. For eg Business Analyst is informed on the status of the work completion during design and development stage of the project

RACI matrix, also known as Responsibility Assignment matrix guide is placement of respective stakeholders according to their roles and responsibilities in a given project. It is effective and hence important so that each stakeholder is aware about their required contributions in a project

Stakeholders are any individuals or non individuals who are directly or indirectly involved in the project, who are positively or negatively Impacted from a project. It is not necessary that a stakeholder needs to be involved actively during all the stages of the project. Some stakeholders need to be extremely active in some stages of project and can be completely inactive or passive at some stages. For Eg. Testing team can be inactive during Requirement gathering and analysis stage, can be partially be active during development stage and the same team is responsible entirely for testing stage. Hence, it is very important to identify correct stakeholders and placing them according to their roles and responsibilities in the beginning of the project itself to avoid any kind of lapses

The major or most common stakeholders in any project are Project manager, Business Analyst, design team, development team, quality team, Testing team, deployment team and users.

RACI matrix also ensures efficient progress of the project and allows clear communication across hierarchy and prevents confusion. It also stops unnecessary and nor required involvement of too many people.

Following are the steps for creating the matrix

  1. Make a list of deliverables
  2. Arrange them on basis of priority
  3. Identify relevant stakeholders
  4. Assign the components of RACI to each stakeholder
  5. There should be only one accountable stakeholder
  6. Verification needs to be done that each stakeholder has been assigned his role
  7. Model the matrix, generally keeping stages of project development life cycle on Y axis and stakeholders on X axis

Generally RACI matrix is required for Waterfall projects because in agile whole team is accountable for project results

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