Impact Effort MatrixImpact Effort Matrix

Impact/Effort Matrix Template

Clearly define the impact and effort of activities to help your team prioritize.

About the impact effort matrix template

What is an impact effort matrix template?

This template is for use by any team that would like to align their priorities and get projects on track while reducing wasted time and energy. 

Benefits of creating an impact effort matrix

Many teams find that the impact effort matrix is a valuable decision-making tool that helps them optimize limited time and resources while providing a visual guide to everything from daily to-do lists to more complex strategic plans.

Prioritize tasks

One major benefit of creating an impact effort matrix is that it forces teams or individuals to prioritize tasks based on what will most help them achieve their ultimate goals. Prioritizing in this way will help teams identify the most fruitful ways to spend their time. 

Maximize efficiency and impact

A properly done impact effort matrix also allows teams to assess how they’re spending their time and find ways to reduce waste. Classifying tasks by which will have the most impact on the team mission or goal helps identify which tasks or undertakings aren’t productive enough to be worthwhile.

Align goals

An impact effort matrix will also help various stakeholders on a team align their goals and priorities by measuring exactly how much impact each effort will have on the advancement of team goals. 

When to use an impact effort matrix

An impact effort matrix is best used when a team or employee has multiple potential courses of action they can take or tasks they can complete, and has to decide on the best ways to allocate their time to maximize impact. In scenarios where time and resources are limited, an impact effort matrix can help teams prioritize tasks and find the most efficient path towards achieving overall goals. 

How to create an impact effort matrix

Creating an impact effort matrix is simple and straightforward with Miro’s template:

Step 1: Get the whole team together

To start, make sure that all the relevant parties are present at the beginning of the session. It’s critical that the matrix is filled out by actual stakeholders with skin-in-the-game who have a firsthand perspective on how tasks are completed and how much effort goes into them.

Step 2: Identify objectives and team goals

Have the team brainstorm what their main objectives and team goals are. This allows the team to align on the overall mission.

Step 3: Create a 4 quadrant chart

The impact effort matrix is plotted on 2 axes: the level of effort involved in a task, and the level of potential impact completion of the task can have. The 4 quadrants are: quick wins (maximum impact, minimal effort), major projects (maximum impact, maximum effort), fill ins (minimal impact minimal effort), and time wasters (minimum impact, maximum effort).

Step 4: Add individual tasks into one of the 4 quadrants

Plot any tasks that the team was planning or considering onto the matrix depending on how much effort and impact each action can have. Make sure to closely review with the whole team to be certain.

Step 5: Create an action plan based on your results

With an understanding of the impact and effort of all tasks, you can prioritize them and determine which tasks deserve the most time and resources in the future.

FAQs about impact effort matrix

What are the 4 quadrants of an impact effort matrix?

The 4 quadrants are: low-effort and low-impact, high-effort and low-impact, low-impact and high-effort, and high-impact and high-effort.

How does an impact effort matrix work?

An impact effort matrix works by plotting all the various tasks related for a project on a matrix with two axes: level of effort and level of impact. Sorting tasks in this way helps teams with prioritization and reducing waste.

Impact/Effort Matrix Template

Get started with this template right now. It’s free

Related Templates
RACI Matrix ThumbnailRACI Matrix Thumbnail
Preview

RACI Matrix

The RACI Matrix is an essential management tool that helps teams keep track of roles and responsibilities and can avoid confusion during projects. The acronym RACI stands for Responsible (the person who does the work to achieve the task and is responsible for getting the work done or decision made); Accountable (the person who is accountable for the correct and thorough completion of the task); Consulted (the people who provide information for the project and with whom there is two-way communication); Informed (the people who are kept informed of progress and with whom there is one-way communication).

RACI Matrix
timeline-thumb-webtimeline-thumb-web
Preview

Timeline

A timeline displays a chronological order of important dates, and scheduled events. Timelines help product managers, project managers, and team members tell visual stories about progress and obstacles. Timelines enable teams to see at a glance what happened before, what progress is happening now, and what needs tackling in the future. Projects or products with specific purpose or deliverables should be based on a timeline to be successful. Use the timeline as a shared reference for start dates, end dates, and milestones.

Timeline
Monthly Planner ThumbnailMonthly Planner Thumbnail
Preview

Monthly Planner

To knock out every task and accomplish every goal for the month, it helps to take a big picture, 10,000 foot view of things—meaning a 30-day view. That’s why a monthly calendar can come in so handy, especially on bigger projects. Use our template to create a visual representation that helps you track and space out every deadline and to-do, both for individuals and full teams. You’ll even be able to customize it your way, with images, video, and sticky notes.

Monthly Planner
Product Roadmap ThumbnailProduct Roadmap Thumbnail
Preview

Product Roadmap (Basic)

Product roadmaps help communicate the vision and progress of what’s coming next for your product. It’s an important asset for aligning teams and valuable stakeholders – including executives, engineering, marketing, customer success, and sales – around your strategy and priorities. Product roadmapping can inform future project management, describe new features and product goals, and spell out the lifecycle of a new product. While product roadmaps are customizable, most contain information about the products you’re building, when you’re building them, and the people involved at each stage.

Product Roadmap (Basic)
T-Chart ThumbnailT-Chart Thumbnail
Preview

T-Chart

T-Charts can help you compare and contrast two different ideas, group information into different categories, and prove a change through “before” and “after” analysis. T-Charts are visual organizational tools that enable you to compare ideas, so you can evaluate pros and cons, facts and opinions, strengths and weaknesses, or big-picture views versus specific details. Designers and content creators can use T-Charts to turn possibilities into actionable ideas. T-Charts are useful for discussing differences and similarities with your team or clients and can help you to reach a decision together.

T-Chart
Bang for the Buck-webBang for the Buck-web
Preview

Bang for the Buck

The name pretty much says it—this Agile framework is all about helping you maximize efficiency by powering collaboration between product managers and dev teams. Together you can go over each to-do on the project agenda and evaluate them in terms of costs and benefits. That way you can prioritize tasks based on how much bang for your buck they deliver. This template is great for teams and organizations that want to make a strategic plan to tackle an upcoming sprint.

Bang for the Buck