Prioritization matrix


The prioritization matrix is ​​a tool that allows you to compare and select between certain problems or solutions the priorities to make a decision.

The most important thing about this matrix is ​​that it helps to select an option considering a list of alternatives based on certain criteria. A criterion is a parameter that is taken as a reference to evaluate priorities and on this to be able to make a consensual decision. It also facilitates the best allocation of scarce resources that are possessed, so that they are used according to the priorities that are presented.

Furthermore, this tool is also known as a Prioritization Diagram. It is used especially in the field of quality. It is very useful to choose an alternative among several possibilities.

What is a prioritization matrix applied for?

A prioritization matrix is ​​applied to:

1. Identify what the evaluation criteria will be and their assessment

In the first place, the identification of the criteria and their assessment is very important because it allows us to determine their level of importance. Without them, the process of prioritizing or classifying criteria in order of importance could not be carried out.

Since these criteria and their assessment reflect how important are all the tasks that are expected to be performed. By not having these parameters, a correct classification cannot be made.

2. Clarification of problems

Second, clarifying problems is essential, because in most cases the problems cannot be understood with the necessary transparency. Only when problems are understood can they be given the best solution.

3. Solution analysis

Third, alternative solutions for problems must be proposed. The prioritization matrix makes it possible to propose solutions and propose a plan. The plan determines how the solution will be implemented.

4. Finding opportunities for improvement

Fourth, it should be noted that the improvement of processes and activities is something that should always be sought. But especially when they are facing problems. Improvement is a goal to always aspire to.

Prioritization matrix

Steps to develop a prioritization matrix

The steps to follow to develop a prioritization matrix are as follows:

1. Establish the goal you hope to achieve

Above all, the matrix must be developed seeking to achieve a clearly defined objective. That is why it is necessary that the objective be stated in a clear, specific and concrete way. It is advisable to define the objective well, to know what is expected to be achieved when applying the prioritization matrix.

2. Identify the options

Of course, a list must be drawn up in which all the options available to be able to achieve the proposed objective are noted. In some cases the options may already be defined. If necessary, other alternatives should be proposed, which will be proposed by the members of the working group. Among the proposals, the most appropriate ones should be chosen.

3. Establish criteria

Naturally, the criteria to be used must be established according to the expected objective. The people who make up the working group will define the criteria that must be considered. For example, some criteria that could be considered would be the time to carry out the project, the resources required to carry it out, the work capacities of the staff, among some that we can mention.

4. Weighting of criteria

Criteria weighting implies defining the quantitative value that each criterion will have. In other words, the weight or level of importance of each of the criteria must be considered. In this step is where the table of the prioritization matrix is ​​already elaborated.

5. Comparison of options

Indeed, a comparison between the options can already be made here. These options are compared based on criteria that have previously been established. The way to analyze it is like a letter L.

Because on the side of the vertical axis are the options and on the side of the horizontal axis the criteria used. Therefore, each option is correlated with all the criteria, placing a value in each case.

6. Select the best option

Finally, to select the best option, each option is compared with all the criteria. And the one that is considered to be the best is selected to achieve the established objective.

Prioritization matrix
steps to make it

Example of a prioritization matrix

To easily exemplify the application of the prioritization matrix, we will follow the previous steps:

1. Establish the goal you want to achieve

Our goal is to choose the best economics professor.

2. Identify the options

The professors who teach the economics class are:

  • Manuel Ramos.
  • Luisa Fernández.
  • Carlos Lara.

3. Establish criteria

  • Domain of the subject.
  • Ease of explaining.
  • Amount of tasks left.
  • Puntuality.
  • Objectivity to qualify.

4. Weighting of criteria

  • Mastery of the topic → 40
  • Ease of explanation → 30
  • Amount of tasks left → 10
  • Punctuality → 10
  • Objectivity to qualify → 10

5. Select the best option

Prioritization matrix example

In this case the best option is Manuel Ramos because according to the criteria evaluated he is the one who has the best score.

Advantages of applying the prioritization matrix

The main advantages of applying the prioritization matrix are:

  • It is quite flexible: It can be used with a lot of flexibility, since it can still correlate few options and few criteria. Or, on the contrary, many options and many criteria.
  • It is easy to use in work groups: This tool is very easy to use in work teams, you only need a screen, a blackboard or a board.
  • Easy to evaluate: When using for parameters it is easy to be able to evaluate, even when there are many options and parameters because computing means can be used.
  • Easy to reach consensus: With this matrix it is very easy to agree to choose the best option.

Finally, we can say that the prioritization matrix is ​​an easy-to-use tool to find the best solutions to solve problems. In addition, it can be used in any field or area of ​​business activities and other types of decisions in people's daily lives.

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