How to Create your Responsibility Matrix in 3 Simple Steps

If you’re a Proposal Manager, you’ll know all too well how long it takes to create a Responsibility Matrix. You’ve probably spent hours manually reviewing proposals, assigning tasks to different teams. Perhaps you’ve experienced missing a responsibility, and failing to pass it over to the correct team. These mistakes can be costly. They can also be prevented.
Emily Mahon

Customer Success Manager

3 min read
A group of business people holding hands together.

With VT Docs’ Responsibility Matrix, you can create Responsibility Matrices in minutes and with just a few clicks. It also minimizes the risk of missing responsibilities, saving money as well as time.

How to create a Responsibility Matrix using VT Docs

Step 1 – Create your dictionary

Before getting started, it’s important to understand how dictionaries work in VT Docs. The solution holds a number of dictionaries that you’re able to edit. These are collections of key terms and phrases. For example, you can assign keywords to relevant teams. Let’s say you want cost-related words to go to the pricing team. You’d specify that words such as “cost”, “price” and “budget” get assigned to that team. Or you could direct personnel-related words to the staffing team. Just program the dictionary to categorize words like “point of contact”, “responsible” or “team member” to that department. If you want to dive deeper into how our dictionaries work, check out this video.

You can use pre-prepared dictionaries available on our website or create your own.  This allows you to work with clauses or terms that apply to your proposal and your context. You can also choose which dictionary to shred your proposal against. You could run your proposal against your technical dictionary, for example. Or companies working with federal agencies might choose to run a proposal against their FAR / DFAR clause dictionary.

Dictionary Top Tip

When creating a dictionary, you can save time by programming it to search all words starting with the same string of letters. To catch all words starting with the same letters, just end with an asterisk. For example, if you enter “promot*”, the solution will pull up related words like promote, promotion, promoting, and promoted. It saves you having to enter all combinations yourself. It might even catch some words you wouldn’t have necessarily thought of. For example, perhaps you wouldn’t have thought to add “promoted”.

Step 2 – Create the Responsibility Matrix

Typically, Proposal Managers create a Responsibility Matrix after deciding to go for a bid. Many of you work with RACIs or similar models. This VT Docs feature forms the first (and most time-consuming) stage of the RACI creation process. A RACI model helps to identify roles and responsibilities within a project. The acronym stands for responsible, accountable, consulted, and informed. Your Responsibility Matrix will help with the “responsible” element of this work.

This is how the Responsibility Matrix works in VT Docs:

1. Upload your proposal to VT Docs.

An arrow pointing to the upload documents button in VT Docs.

2. The solution scans for relevant keywords.

An arrow pointing to create responsibility matrix button in VT Docs.

3. The solution then automatically generates a Responsibility Matrix shredded into MS Excel. It highlights instances of those keywords broken down by team.

Step 3 – Share with your team

You’re then able to easily share responsibilities with your team to distribute work. In the virtual environment we find ourselves in due to COVID, it helps to have all roles and responsibilities clearly defined. And because the output is an Excel document, it’s familiar to everyone. Proposal Managers can easily share the Responsibility Matrix and have colleagues understand how they need to contribute to the bid.

And the Excel format brings another benefit. Everyone can filter on their relevant keywords or by team. They only need to see the part of the proposal that relates to them. They don’t waste time sifting through other people’s responsibilities, so they have more time to work on the proposal.

The wider business impact of automating your Responsibility Matrix

Proposal Managers are busy people. It makes sense that many look to automate their Responsibility Matrices. It helps to save time and ensure greater accuracy.

It’s easy to miss responsibilities while manually trawling through hundreds of pages of a proposal. As long as your dictionary is set up correctly, the Responsibility Matrix will catch every task and assign it to the correct team. It minimizes the risk of a responsibility getting overlooked.

What other solution can save you time, money, and offer peace of mind?


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