Project Management: The RACI model
In Tom Costello’s article in the March/April 2012 issue of IEEE Magazine, “RACI – Getting Projects ‘Unstuck,’” he explains that over the years he’s seen many projects “get stuck.” He contends that no matter the project or the organization, a stuck project occurs because there are unclear expectations for activities and a lack of life-cycle ownership.
Using a model for task ownership can remedy this issue, particularly the RACI model (Responsible, Accountable, Consulted and Informed). This model assigns specific roles to everyone involved in the completion of a task. The one person who is in charge of the project is “A” (Accountable), those who are responsible for performing tasks are “R” (Responsible), the “Cs” (Consulted) are contributors, and finally, those who need to stay in-the-know about the project are “Is” (Informed). Thus, everyone involved should be aware of the role they play in the task’s success (or failure).
If you’re unfamiliar with the RACI model, Costello’s article is a great starting point for background on what it is and how it should be implemented. But, as Costello notes, RACI is not just a model, it’s a mindset that needs to be understood throughout the organization in order for it to run effectively.
RACI can serve as the key to preventing “stuck” projects or to helping them become “unstuck.” If you’re a CIO, it’s worth looking into the model – or refreshing your knowledge about it.
Have you worked with the RACI model before? What did you think? If not, could you see this working in your organization?