The RACI model is a straightforward tool used for identifying roles and responsibilities and avoiding confusion over those roles and responsibilities during a project. The acronym RACI stands for the following:
Responsible: The individual(s) who complete the task. This responsibility can be shared. The degree of responsibility is determined by the individual with A.
Accountable: The individual who is ultimately responsible. Includes yes or no authority and veto power. Only one A can be assigned to a function.
Consult: The individual(s) to be consulted prior to a final decision or action. Requires two-way communication.
Inform: The individual(s) who need to be informed after a decision or action is taken. Requires one-way communication.
- Eliminate "checkers checking checkers" (lots of Cs in a row).
- Encourage teamwork.
- 100-percent accuracy is not always required.
- Place accountability (A) and responsibility (R) at the level closest to the action or knowledge.
- There can be only one accountability per activity.
- Authority must accompany accountability.
- Minimize the number of consultants (C) and informs (I).
- All roles and responsibilities must be documented and communicated.
- Lots of Rs in Column: Can or need the individuals stay on top of so much? Or can the decision or activity be broken into smaller, more manageable functions?
- No empty spaces in Column: Do the individuals need to be involved in so many activities? Are they "gatekeepers" or could management-by-exception principles be used? Can Cs be reduced to Is or left to the individual's discretion when something needs particular attention?
- No Rs or As in Column: Should this functional role be eliminated?
- Too many As in Column: Does a proper segregation of duties exist? Should other groups be accountable for some of these activities to ensure checks and balances and accurate decisionmaking throughout the process? Is this a bottleneck? Is everyone waiting for decisions or direction?
- Qualifications: Does the type or degree of participation fit the qualifications for this role?
- No Rs in Row: Is the job getting done? Some roles may be waiting to approve, be consulted, or informed. No one sees his or her role as the one to take the initiative.
- Too many Rs in Row: Is this a sign of "over the wall" activities? "Just get it off my desk asap"?
- No As in Row: Why not? There must be an A. Accountability should be pushed down to the most appropriate level.
- Too many As in Row: This creates confusion because every person with an A has a different view of how it is or should be done. There can be only one accountability per activity.