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Certain project planning tools should be part of every competitive grant proposal writer’s repertoire. Among such tools are: RASCI charts, Gantt charts, SWOT analysis, PESTLE analysis, Red Team reviews, meta-analysis, and logic models. This post discusses RASCI charts.


Definition of RASCI Charts


A RASCI chart is a form of responsibility matrix. It clarifies roles and responsibilities for tasks and deliverables within a project team. It specifies who will do what. A RASCI chart encompasses all of the primary types of stakeholders in a project. It aids in mapping project implementation plans, personnel plans, and evaluation plans. It also aids in doing a task analysis for a Gantt chart and in developing project-specific position descriptions.


R = Responsible. R is the one person who will be ultimately responsible for success in completing a task and in delivering its work products. R may be the person who actually will do the work (or produce the deliverable) or who will direct others to do the work. Example: Strategic Communication Specialist.


A = Accountable. A is the one person who will have ultimate accountability and authority for the task. A is also the person to whom R will report or will be otherwise accountable, and A is the person who will approve the adequacy of the work product (deliverable). Example: Project Director.


S = Supportive. S is the person or team of persons who will be needed to do the actual work of completing specific tasks (or creating specific deliverables). S often includes persons who can provide logistical, coordinative, or administrative services. Example: Professional Development Coordinator.


C = Consulted. C is anyone whose input will add value and/or whose buy-in will be essential for the ultimate implementation of the tasks. C commonly includes persons who can offer technical expertise to a task. Example: Community-Based Organizations.


I = Informed. I is the person or groups of persons who will need to be notified of results or actions taken but who will not need to be involved in daily decision-making processes. I will include persons or groups that will need to be “kept in the loop” and/or apprised of the status and progress of a project. Example: Board of Directors.


Steps in Creating a RASCI Chart


A RASCI chart requires the prior completion of at least a preliminary task analysis for a project. After completing a task analysis, create a table. List the Tasks down the Y-axis. List the Positions or Persons along the X-axis. Enter the roles in the cells. Color-code each type of role (if desired). The relative numbers of stakeholders by code should be: I > C > S > R > A. Every task must have an A and an R. Not every task needs an S.


Sample RASCI Chart


  Person 1 Person 2 Person 3 Person 4… Person N
Activity/Task 1 R I A C S
Activity/Task 2 I R A S C
Activity/Task 3 R C A I S
Activity/Task 4 S A C R I


Among the uses of a RASCI chart in writing a grant proposal are:

  1. Program Design – describing action steps that R, A, S, C, and/or I will perform
  2. Personnel Plan – identifying types of personnel required to implement a project
  3. Evaluation Plan – identifying types of personnel needed for interim and final evaluation of a project
  4. Budget – allocating funds for key personnel identified through creating a RASCI chart


Among the limitations of using a RASCI chart in writing a grant proposal are:

  1. Possible proliferation of A when only one person should be A
  2. Interpretations that R are not A to any degree at all
  3. Possible proliferation of C where too many C may slow progress of project


Subsequent posts will discuss other project development tools such as Gantt charts, SWOT analysis, PESTLE analysis, Red Team reviews, meta-analysis, and logic models.


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