RAG Status – Communicate Project Status!

“RAG Status” stands for¬†R / A / G = Red, Amber or Green (it’s an ACRONYM, which means ANNOYING MANAGER WORD!!!)

RAG - Red Amber Green - this template clearly shows RAG status, and can be used for simple RAG reports

RAG status is clearly communicated in this Dashboard template

It is commonly used in Project Status reporting to communicate the level of risk, to cover your arse, and yes….

….it is Management Jargon ūüôā

The Idiots Guide to RAG STATUS

  1. RED = High Risk
  2. AMBER = Medium Risk
  3. GREEN = Low Risk

The Typical RAG Status Conversation

Manager: “What is your RAG status, Mr Smithers?”

You: “I have GREEN for Project Sunshine, and AMBER for Project Saving Rear”

Good – you passed!

Need more help? Here are a few RAG Status Examples

Watch Out – RAG STATUS can mean different things !!

“Do I need to poke nose in and mess your life up??” Management RAG Status

  1. RED = Your manager MESSES UP YOUR PROJECT IMMEDIATELY.
  2. AMBER = Your manager HANGS AROUND ANNOYINGLY.
  3. GREEN = Your manager reverts to NORMAL PAIN IN THE REAR.

THE TRUTH: Project Manager’s RAG Status

This is what it really means.

  1. RED = My project is ABOUT TO GO BANG. I am PROTECTING MY ASS.
  2. AMBER = My project is ABOUT TO GO RED.
  3. GREEN = My project seems OK, so IT WILL BE AMBER OR RED NEXT WEEK.

MORE JARGON: “Issue Focussed RAG Status”

This will impress your managers. Use these exact words if you want to appear all business-like:

  1. RED = LIVE ISSUE: remedial action is required to bring the project back within budget or delivery schedule
  2. AMBER = ISSUE is being addressed: remedial action is in progress, and ISSUE is being addressed
  3. GREEN = NO LIVE ISSUE: no action required

Some more generalised Risk and Status communication formats

Summary – use RAG Status carefully!

RAG Status is a great tool for communicating status quickly, but beware : MAKE SURE YOU DEFINE WHAT THE RED, AMBER, and GREEN MEAN FOR YOUR STAKEHOLDERS!!

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Last Updated : April 28th, 2016

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