Through the investor assurance process, Infrastructure NSW provides independent advice to delivery agencies and direct reporting to the NSW Cabinet and the Minister for Infrastructure. This independent advice and reporting seeks to proactively contribute to the delivery of the Government’s key infrastructure projects to time, budget and in accordance with government objectives.
There are three main components to the independent investor assurance process:
- Gateway Reviews, Health Checks and Deep Dive Reviews
- Regular project reporting based on inputs provided by delivery agencies
- Monitoring conducted by Infrastructure NSW
Gateway Reviews and Health Checks
Infrastructure NSW’s Infrastructure Investor Assurance Framework (IIAF) is a Gateway Coordination Agency (GCA) framework for capital projects in terms of the NSW Gateway Policy.
The IIAF Gateway Review process provides for a series of short, focused, independent expert reviews, held at key decision points in a project’s lifecycle. The Gateway Reviews are appraisals of infrastructure projects, that highlight risks and issues, which if not addressed may threaten successful delivery.
Gateway Reviews are supported by periodic Health Checks which assist in identifying issues which may emerge between decision points. Health Checks will be carried out, when required, by an independent team of experienced practitioners (industry experts including from the private sector), appointed by Infrastructure NSW.
Deep Dive Reviews are like Health Checks but focus on a specific issue or limited terms of reference rather than the full range of issues normally considered at a Health Check.
Gateway Reviews are conducted by independent experienced practitioners, appointed by Infrastructure NSW to form a Review Team. Practitioners appointed to a Review Team are selected according to each project / program’s needs, and to provide a mix of skills, knowledge and experience. The independence of the Review Team from the project together with the independence of Infrastructure NSW is the key to delivering objective, high quality reviews and review Reports.
During a Gateway Review, the Review Team interview key stakeholders and review relevant documents. This enables the independent review team to identify project risks and provide recommendations on how these should be addressed, as well as identify opportunities to complement delivery of a project or program.
Gateway Review requirements for projects under the IIAF are proportionate to their Tier level:
- Tier 1 – High Profile / High Risk projects must pass through all Gates
- Tier 2 projects must pass Gate 0 (Project Justification), Gate 1 (Strategic Assessment, and Gate 2 (Business Case)
- Tier 3 projects must pass Gate 0 (Project Justification)
- Tier 4 projects (lowest risk) do not require Gateway Reviews.
Health Checks are independent reviews conducted as required to identify/resolve issues which arise at a point in time between Gateway Reviews, and are also compulsory for Tier 1 – High Profile / High Risk projects every six months during the delivery stage.
Regular Project Reporting
Infrastructure NSW prepares regular project reports which provide an assessment of project development and delivery against:
- risks and impediments to project development/delivery.
In line with the risk based assurance approach, a project’s Tier informs the reporting intervals and level of detail required.
To support regular project reporting, delivery agencies provide Infrastructure NSW with timely and comprehensive project information. Reports are lodged by the relevant delivery agency after Secretary or delegated executive officer approval is given.
Regular project reporting is required monthly for Tier 1 – High Profile / High Risk projects, and quarterly for Tier 2 and Tier 3 projects.
Infrastructure NSW continuously monitors project status and findings of Gateway Reviews and Health. This includes:
- Close-out Plans to address recommendations emerging from a Review
- undertaking necessary steps to verify information provided by delivery agencies or prepared by Review Teams
- seeking direct input from Expert Reviewers
- undertaking independent analysis and developing advice on key risks, recommended corrective actions and mitigation strategies