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Project Assurance

Presenting the NSW Government with oversight of NSW’s infrastructure program


The Assurance function at Infrastructure NSW works with NSW Government delivery agencies to ensure the State’s infrastructure projects are being effectively developed and delivered on time, on budget and in accordance with the NSW Government’s objectives through the implementation of the Infrastructure Investor Assurance Framework (IIAF).

The IIAF applies to capital projects with a value of $10 million and above, being developed, procured or delivered by General Government agencies and State-Owned Corporations.

The key features of the framework are:

  • a single point of accountability for independent assurance across all capital projects/programs vested in Infrastructure NSW, reporting to the Premier of NSW and Cabinet
  • a focus on what matters by taking a tiered approach to risk assessment
  • ensuring collective accountability among delivery agency Secretaries / CEOs to provide the best outcomes for Government. 
  • escalating the levels of scrutiny and/or interventions applied to projects as and when emerging risks are reported/detected
  • improved reporting and data collection through the development of a single fit-for purpose reporting tool.

The IIAF is the applicable Gateway Coordination Framework under the NSW Gateway Policy.

A risk-based approach to project assurance

The IIAF is built on the foundation of a risk-based approach to ensure that the assurance evaluation focuses on the most complex projects. The process is confidential to each project, and advice is provided to the NSW Government, as the investor, through regular reporting.

The Assurance Framework enables “red flags” to be raised and an opportunity for interventions ensuring projects are delivered on-time, on-budget, and in accordance with the NSW Government’s objectives.

High Profile / High Risk projects are classed as Tier 1. These projects require a greater level of oversight to ensure risk is appropriately managed.

High Profile / High Risk projects are classed as Tier 1. These projects require a greater level of oversight to ensure risk is appropriately managed.

Investor Assurance process

Through the implementation of the IIAF, Infrastructure NSW is able to carry out the investor assurance process.

The key components of the independent investor assurance process include:

Project monitoring

Infrastructure NSW continuously monitors project status through Gateway Reviews. 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.

Regular project reporting

Infrastructure NSW prepares regular project reports which provide an assessment of project development and delivery against time, cost, quality, 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.

Gateway, Health Check and Deep Dive Reviews

The IIAF Gateway Review process provides 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 Check Reviews which assist in identifying issues that may emerge between decision points. Health Check Reviews are carried out by an independent team of experienced practitioners (industry experts including from the private sector), appointed by Infrastructure NSW.

Deep Dive Reviews are like Health Check Reviews but focus on a specific issue or limited terms of reference rather than the full range of issues normally considered at a Health Check Review.

Insights sharing and capability development

Insights gained and lessons learned through the Assurance role are shared across government to acknowledge key challenges, foster continuous improvement and contribute to the development of capability in infrastructure planning, procurement and delivery.

Infrastructure NSW publishes the Trends and Insights Report annually, which features an analysis of Assurance Reviews to identify systemic issues and trends facing delivery agencies, as well as provide lessons learnt across projects.

Questions or comments?

For more information on project assurance managed by Infrastructure NSW, please contact