The Project Roles and Responsibilities Document

Is there a role and responsibility document for your project team that outlines what each person does? This is something you should do. It’s a simple document that helps to clarify who is contributing to the project.
This article will explain what it is and how to use it.

What is a Roles and Responsibilities document?
Why is a role and responsibilities document necessary?
RACI charts
What is the difference between a RACI matrix and a Roles and Responsibilities document?
The roles that are typical for a project team
What is the best time to create the Roles and Responsibilities Document?
Who creates the document?
What should you include in a Roles and Responsibilities Document?
How to use a template for Roles and Responsibilities

What is a Roles and Responsibilities document?
Here’s a definition of “definition”:
A Roles and Responsibilities is a formal way to define what each role is responsible for in a project team.
Roles and people are not the same. One person can have more than one role. One person on a project team might have more than one role.
The role of the project manager includes leading the project and being responsible for project governance.
Responsibilities refer to the tasks that the role is responsible. As an example, the project sponsor is responsible to chair the meetings of the project board.
Why is a role and responsibilities document necessary?
Because it’s amazing.
It’s not a bad idea, it’s a great way to communicate what everyone is doing on the project. It helps people understand what they have promised to do (or were committed to by their managers). The template can be used as part of your communication plans.
The roles and responsibilities template allows everyone to understand what other people are doing on the project. This helps them to see how their work overlaps with others’. It is also possible to identify the areas where there will be hand-offs.
It is a good idea to do the exercise and write down who is responsible. This will help you avoid duplication of effort and make your work more efficient.
Team harmony can be achieved by using a template of roles and responsibilities for each member.
RACI charts
You can also use the RACI chart as a project document in conjunction with the Roles and Responsibilities template. If your project is small, you may not need both.
Example of a RACI Chart
To allocate different types of responsibility, a RACI matrix or chart (or RASCI) can be used. The chart has a name that links each person to the type and level of involvement they have in different aspects of the project.
Although you could theoretically make a RACI diagram that lists names at the top, my thoughts are that it becomes too abstract to be useful for project management.
You can find more information about RACI in my complete guide to the RACI matrix.
The roles that are typical for a project team
The roles and responsibilities page can be used by any team. However, if you have found it you most likely work for a project. The following are typical roles for a project team:
The project manager (that’s YOU)
The project sponsor
The steering group, or project board (that’s the group of people who fill a particular governance role on a project — I’d mention them in the document, but for large projects you’d need a separate Board Terms and Reference for their contributions).
Supplier (anyone who gives you items to use in the project).
IT Lead (because many projects involve technology elements these days, it is worth having an IT person on the team).
Subject Matter Expert(s).

Your project may require a variety of roles. These are some of the roles you might find on project teams.
Designers/UX experts