Introduction:

The DACI framework is a set of processes to ensure group decision-making flows smoothly and efficiently. 

The DACI acronym stands for: 

  • Driver: Who drives a decision to a conclusion?
  • Approver: Who approves a particular decision? 
  • Contributor: Who contributes to a decision?
  • Informed: Who is informed about the final decision?

DACI - pronounced day-cee - is a variant of the RACI (Responsible, Accountable, Consulted, Informed) framework developed by Intuit in the 1980s. Since then, it’s rapidly gained momentum in fast-moving, cooperative companies as a way to increase their group decision-making turnaround. 

The benefit of any responsibility matrix is that it clearly outlines who is responsible for what and when, eliminating the confusion and endless debate that can come with group decision-making.

For product managers juggling different tasks on various fronts, DACI clarifies who the ultimate decision-maker is and prevents bottlenecks from occurring when tasks don’t complete at the same time.

Kickoff:

This checklist is meant to act as a basic outline for using the DACI framework during your regular meetings

There are two significant features used within this section: stop tasks and approvals

Stop tasks ensure that a checklist is completed in a particular order by preventing tasks beyond that point from being completed until the stop task is completed. 

Approvals help save time by streamlining your hand-offs and approvals process. You can create single instance approvals, multi-stage, or sequential approvals within your workflows.

Every part of this template is customizable to suit your organization's needs. 

To get started editing, go to your template dashboard and select the template you wish to edit.

Click the three dots next to the template name, and then select “Edit Template” in the right-hand menu.

Enter initial meeting details

Before you dive in too deep, it's a good idea to record some basic information first. In this task, you'll document the decision your group will be working on and other pertinent information so you can maintain a detailed record of the entire decision-making process


Our drag-and-drop editor makes it intuitive to rearrange form fields, or add entirely new ones, depending on the information you want to capture. 

In addition to the short text and date fields shown below, you can also incorporate the following features into your forms:

  • Long text
  • Email field
  • Website URL
  • File upload
  • Dropdown menu
  • Multiple choice
  • Hidden
  • Members

You can also set whether or not a field is required by checking the "required" box beneath the field. 

Record meeting attendees

Select who is attending the meeting from the dropdown menu below.


This dropdown menu is also customizable. You can either replace the demo names with your own names, replace the field with a long text field to include guests or freelancers, or create a Members dropdown that is automatically populated with the members of your organization.

  • 1
    Kate
  • 2
    Tim
  • 3
    Jason
  • 4
    Barbara
  • 5
    Jason

Outline the meeting agenda

This task demonstrates our file upload form field

This allows you to add any additional images or documents that need to be shared with your group.

List the action items

Document any action items that need to be addressed during the meeting, and relevant deadlines for handling them. 

Assign Driver and Approver roles

The first two letters of the DACI acronym represent the Driver and Approver roles. 

The responsibility of the Driver is to, in essence, drive the decision-making process. The Driver is not necessarily the person who ultimately makes the decision, but they are responsible for ensuring a decision gets made. 

The Approver, as you might imagine, is responsible for making the final decision. The Approver will utilize the information provided by the Contributor(s) and Driver to choose the best option given the resources available.

Determine the Contributors

Contributors will include any relevant experts on the subject matter for the Driver and Approver to consult in order to make the final decision. 

These individuals can be internal (employees, team leaders, etc.) or external (customers, freelancers, distributors, etc.). While they have a voice in the decision-making process, they do not have a vote on what the decision will be.

Specify who will be Informed

The Informed are anyone who needs to be apprised of the outcome of the decision-making process. Those who need to be informed can be as specific as a manager or department, or as broad as the entire organization, or even customer base. 

To determine who will be the Informed in your process, consider who will be affected by the decision's outcome. 

Delegate tasks

In this task, you'll document which roles are responsible for certain tasks, and when those tasks need to be completed

Specifying task responsibilities in this way increases transparency and ensures accountability.

Review meeting details

This task consolidates all the information already entered into the checklist so far into a localized summary for review.

The summary is created using variables, which are an easy way to pull data automatically from form fields to save time from copy/paste or excessive data entry. 

Once this task is completed, the subsequent Approval will be triggered, and those assigned (in this case, the Driver and the Approver) will be notified that they need to review the summary. 

An Approval can either be accepted or rejected (or additionally, rejected with comments). 

As an extra time-saver, Approvals can be done from anywhere by using our mobile app for those times when you don't happen to be at your desk!

Meeting occured on {{form.Date_of_the_kickoff_meeting}} to discuss {{form.Decision_to_be_discussed}}.

In attendance:
{{form.Meeting_attendees}}

Meeting agenda:
{{form.Meeting_agenda}}

The following action items need to be addressed:

  • {{form.Action_Item_#1}} by {{form.Action_Item_#1_Deadline}}
  • {{form.Action_Item_#2}} by {{form.Action_Item_#2_Deadline}}
  • {{form.Action_Item_#3}} by {{form.Action_Item_#3_Deadline}}

Driver
Name: {{form.Driver}}
Email: {{form.Driver's_email}}

Responsibilities: 
{{form.Driver's_responsibilities}}
Deadline: {{form.Driver's_final_deadline}}

Approver
Name: {{form.Approver}}
Email: {{form.Approver's_email}}

Responsibilities:
{{form.Approver's_responsibilities}}
Deadline: {{form.Approver's_final_deadline}}

Contributor(s)
{{form.Contributor_#1}} - {{form.Contributor_#1_email}}
{{form.Contributor_#2}} - {{form.Contributor_#2_email}}
{{form.Contributor_#3}} - {{form.Contributor_#3_email}}
{{form.Contributor_#4}} - {{form.Contributor_#4_email}}

Responsibilities:
{{form.Contributors'_responsibilities}}
Deadline: {{form.Contributors'_final_deadline}}

Informed
{{form.Informed_#1}} - {{form.Informed_#1_email}}
{{form.Informed_#2}} - {{form.Informed_#2_email}}
{{form.Informed_#3}} - {{form.Informed_#3_email}}
{{form.Informed_#4}} - {{form.Informed_#4_email}}

Approval:

Will be submitted for approval:
  • Review meeting details
    Will be submitted

Driver tasks:

The following sections all use the Conditional Logic feature. 

Conditional Logic is a powerful feature that allows you to create truly dynamic checklists with if-this-then-that logic.

Watch the video below for more info on using Conditional Logic in your checklists!

Create branching processes with Conditional Logic!

Report progress of Driver tasks

This task is for the Driver to complete when they have handled all of their responsibilities.


Conditional Logic comes into play in this task with the question: Were all Driver tasks completed on time?

If the answer is "No," an additional field: Explain which Driver tasks weren't finished will appear for the Driver to complete. 

{{form.Driver's_responsibilities}}

  • 1
    Completed items meet established parameters
  • 2
    Necessary approvals have been acquired
  • 3
    All communication has been documented
  • 4
    All actions taken have been documented

Approver tasks:

Throughout the checklist, different tasks have been automatically assigned to certain roles

In the previous section, the task was assigned to the Driver. This section is assigned to the Approver, and the following section is assigned to the Contributor roles. 

You can set these assignments to happen automatically based either on role or organization member when you edit a template. 

For example, these three sections are all assigned based on role. When the Driver, Approver, and Contributor fields were filled in earlier, those individuals were automatically assigned to their respective tasks.

Check out the video below for further details on dynamic role assignments for your team!

Dynamic role assignment for team collaboration!

Report progress of Approver tasks

This task is for the Approver to complete when they have handled all of their responsibilities.


Dynamic task assignments will automatically assign tasks within the checklist to the relevant person.

When editing the template, if you click on the "Assign" button at the top of the task menu, you can assign a task by member or role within the organization. 

{{form.Approver's_responsibilities}}

  • 1
    Completed items meet established parameters
  • 2
    Necessary approvals have been acquired
  • 3
    All communication has been documented
  • 4
    All actions taken have been documented

Contributor(s) tasks:

Task due dates are a useful way to keep everyone on track and ensure tasks are completed on time

When a task is given a due date, automated reminders will alert the person responsible that the task needs to be completed. 

You can set due dates for a specific day and time, or you can use dynamic due dates, which will automatically calculate when a task is due based on when a previous task or date is entered. 

Learn more in the video below:

Report progress of Contributor(s) tasks

This task is for the Contributor(s) to complete when they have handled all of their responsibilities.


This task has a dynamic due date. The time this task is due will be automatically calculated based on information already entered into the checklist. 

{{form.Contributors'_responsibilities}}

  • 1
    Completed items meet established parameters
  • 2
    Necessary approvals have been acquired
  • 3
    All communication has been documented
  • 4
    All actions taken have been documented

Review:

The review section is the penultimate stage in the group decision-making process.

By using the DACI framework, each member of the group will have played their assigned role in developing and vetting potential options so the most viable alternative for the organization is chosen

The DACI framework is meant to streamline the decision-making process by clearly delineating each person's responsibilities and alleviating personal conflicts over the final decision. 

Review group decision-making process

Review the following information to ensure every step has been completed properly. 

If all fields have been entered correctly, complete this task to trigger the Approval stage

Once the review has been approved, the Informed can then be notified of the result of the decision-making process. 

Completion report for decision: {{form.Decision_to_be_discussed}}
Process initiated on {{form.Date_of_the_kickoff_meeting}}

Group Roles & Responsibilities

Driver: {{form.Driver}}, {{form.Driver's_email}}

Tasks: {{form.Driver's_responsibilities}}

Successes: {{form.Driver's_successes}}

Obstacles: {{form.Driver's_obstacles}}

Outcome: {{form.Driver's_final_outcome}}


Approver: {{form.Approver}}, {{form.Approver's_email}}

Tasks: {{form.Approver's_responsibilities}}

Successes: {{form.Approver's_successes}}

Obstacles: {{form.Approver's_obstacles}}

Outcome: {{form.Approver's_final_outcome}}


Contributor(s): 
{{form.Contributor_#1}}, {{form.Contributor_#1_email}}
{{form.Contributor_#2}}, {{form.Contributor_#2_email}}
{{form.Contributor_#3}}, {{form.Contributor_#3_email}}
{{form.Contributor_#4}}, {{form.Contributor_#4_email}}

Tasks: {{form.Contributors'_responsibilities}}

Successes: {{form.Contributor(s)'_successes}}

Obstacles: {{form.Contributor(s)'_obstacles}}

Outcome: {{form.Contributor(s)'_final_outcome}}

Approval:

Will be submitted for approval:
  • Review group decision-making process
    Will be submitted

Inform:

The following task uses the Send Email feature. 

Using variables, a form email has been prepopulated with data specific to this checklist (email addresses, dates, form field responses, etc.). 

When you click "Send," the email will automatically open in your chosen email program. Proof the email to make sure everything is correct, and then hit send

You can customize the recipients and body of the email by clicking "edit template."

Notify Informed of outcome

Once the process review has been completed, the Informed need to be notified of the outcome. 

Use this email form to save time by pulling data already entered into the checklist. 

You'll notice another example of Conditional Logic here. If the answer to the follow-up question is "yes," an additional task will become available. If no follow-up is needed, you will be prompted to finish the checklist. 

Follow-up after notification

Complete:

This is the final step in the checklist. 

The Subtasks feature has been used as a quick, final review to enable you to check that all relevant steps have been completed, and the decision-making process can now end. 

Subtasks are smaller checklists that can be placed within a task in your templates.

Finish checklist

  • 1
    All processes followed to make a decision
  • 2
    Thorough communication maintained through proper channels
  • 3
    All follow-ups completed and resolved
  • 4
    Final decision is best possible option given resources

Congratulations! You've completed the DACI group decision-making framework!

Complete this task to finish the checklist.

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