Infrastructure and Projects Authority: assurance review toolkit

This collection contains guidance and templates for use when undertaking assurance reviews on major government projects.

The Infrastructure and Projects Authority (IPA) arranges and manages more than 200 independent assurance reviews of major government projects each year.

These reviews are mainly for the central government’s most complex and high risk projects in the Government Major Projects Portfolio.

Assurance is an essential part of successful project delivery. The reviews:

  • are often required for formal HM Treasury approvals or business case approval points
  • provide support and constructive challenge to senior responsible owners

You should use these documents if you’re doing an IPA review. You can also use these documents if you’re doing a non-IPA review, for example, any other government review or a medium risk review.

If you’re interested in becoming one of our independent assurance reviewers, refer to the guidance on how to become an assurance reviewer.

For general guidance on project delivery, refer to the guidance on project and programme management.

For any queries about assurance, email

How to use this collection

You can do any of the following:

  • view general guidance which may apply to all reviews
  • view the role specific guidance - if you’re a review team member or leader, a programme and project manager, or a senior responsible owner
  • download the right guidance or template for your review

General guidance

You may need these documents for all types of reviews. The documents will also help you understand what type of review or assurance may be suitable for your project.

Role specific guidance

Documents that specific roles (for example, a review team leader) need when undertaking an assurance review.

You’ll also need to establish a code of conduct.

  1. Programme and Project Managers: briefing note
  2. Review Team Leaders: briefing note
  3. Review Team Members: briefing note
  4. Senior Responsible Owners: briefing note

Guidance and templates for specific types of review

Use the correct review type for the stage your project is at. Each time you use a template, you’ll also need the guide to the classification of recommendations.

  1. Assurance of action plan guidance and templates
  2. Critical friend review report template
  3. Exit review report template
  4. Project assessment review guidance and templates
  5. Project validation review guidance and templates
  6. OGC Gateway Review 0: strategic assessment guidance and templates
  7. OGC Gateway Review 1: business justification guidance and templates
  8. OGC Gateway Review 2: delivery strategy guidance and templates
  9. OGC Gateway Review 3: investment decision guidance and templates
  10. OGC Gateway Review 4: readiness for service guidance and templates
  11. OGC Gateway Review 5: operations review guidance and templates
Published 3 June 2011