Decision makers need information. Whether they are ministers, mayors or corporate execs, all will need to weigh up the costs and benefits of their actions. Advisers and analysts have the role of collating and presenting the necessary information in a snappy and digestible form. In a central government context, this function is performed by a document called the Regulatory Impact Statement (RIS), which accompanies Cabinet papers. Its analytical framework is equally applicable in a local government or corporate context. The RIS is a Government agency document, making it distinct from the Cabinet paper, which is the Minister's document. Writing a good RIS clearly sets out your policy development process, helps Ministers in their decisions and, ultimately, makes your agency look good. But the RIS is only as good as the policy process followed - a poor process will lead to a poor RIS. This Insight discusses the common pitfalls with undertaking policy development and ultimately writing a snappy, easy to follow RIS.