The RASCI matrix
The RASCI matrix is a useful tool for defining the roles and to determine the tasks, responsibilities and authority of the development group members. The names or functional roles of the development group members are listed along the horizontal axis of the matrix and the deliverables, activities or processes along the vertical axis. The letters R, A, S, C and I each constitute a combination of a name/role and result/process/task. The letters stand for the following terms:
R (responsible): those who do the work and are responsible for the result. They report directly to the person accountable.
A (accountable): the one ultimately responsible and authorised to hold accountable those responsible.
S (supportive): those who provide support and assistance to those responsible for the result.
C (consulted): those whose opinions are sought before decisions or steps are taken to achieve the result (two-way communication).
I (informed): those who are informed after decisions have been made or results have been achieved. They have no influence over the result.
A basic RASCI matrix for a guideline development group could look like the following. Naturally, guideline development groups can make additions to the matrix and provide further detail for specific situations.
|Commissioner||Chair of development group||Project leader||Development group member||Implementation specialist||Patient representative|
|1. Specify roles, tasks, responsibilities and authority of development group members|
|2. Determine topic, objective and target group|
|3. Outline the interests of the different parties|
|4. Identify relevant professional and patient organisations|
|5. Preparation for filling chair position|
|6. Preparation for filling project leader role|
|7. Selecting and profiling the other development group members|
|8. Involvement of representatives of healthcare user|
|9. Determine/coordinate methodology for guideline development|
|10. Determine evaluation periods|
|11. Introduction of development group members|
|12. Making agreements about course of events during development group meetings|
|13. Drafting the agenda for development group meetings|
|14. Stimulating/motivating development group members|
|15. Approach to stagnation/conflicts|
|16. Evaluation of group process|
|17. Attending/participating in development group meetings|
|18. Analysis of clinical care gaps|
|19. Drafting the review questions|
|20. Summary of the literature|
|21. Presentation of recommendations|
|22. Writing the guideline|
|23. Description of the knowledge gaps|
|24. Delivery of products|
|25. Commentary round|
|27. Revision of procedure|
|29. Final evaluation and conclusion of group|
The advantages of using the RASCI matrix are:
- The roles and responsibilities of all parties are clarified. This is particularly important regarding the position of the chair of the guideline development group and who can hold the chair accountable when things are not running smoothly.
- It helps clarify which roles may be missing.
- It helps clarify who should be cooperating and coordinating with whom.
- Support is increased by liaising and coordinating.
- Teamwork is encouraged; duplication of activities can be prevented. The completed RASCI matrix provides a reference for if responsibilities become unclear among group members: agreements at the start prevent discussions later.
- Roles are associated with processes/activities rather than results.