A RACI chart is a graphic organizer or matrix used to clarify roles and responsibilities within an organizational process. The chart identifies the actions that must be carried out and by whom. The letters constituting the acronym stand for responsible, accountable, consulted and informed. RACI charts sometimes include a supportive role, as well.
The chart is produced by listing the appropriate names or roles of individuals across the top, with tasks to be completed listed down the left-hand side. Cells formed by the intersecting rows and columns are then marked to visually represent a shared understanding of who does what.
As a general principle, each task is assigned only one responsible person. Someone else is given approval authority if required, and those responsible for supporting the task by providing data or performing sub-tasks are also indicated. The person to be informed of the task’s completion is indicated as well.
If a gap occurs in which a task exists with no one assigned ownership, it must be resolved. The same is true of overlaps where more than one person is responsible for a single task, which may require subdividing the task into more detailed responsibilities.
RACI charts are ideally posted in locations where they are readily accessible to all interested parties. This allows them to be periodically referenced, reviewed and modified as necessary.