Project Assurance / Independent Quality Assurance (IQA)

Independent Quality Assurance – Why you need this service

Independent Quality Assurance (IQA) examines whether projects and programmes are on track for successful completion or whether action is required to prevent failure. It can improve the probability of successful project delivery and minimise the risk of cost and time blowouts.

An IQA establishes whether a project is being managed and governed to a high standard and  is particularly important at the start of a project to ensure that it is set up appropriately. An IQA often provides very large returns by preventing costly project mistakes and delivering benefits earlier.

An IQA is usually conducted on behalf of the project Sponsor or Executive to provide assurance that the project is appropriately planned, managed and controlled, and that the governance supports the project to best effect.

Large or high risk Government projects require IQA reviews to be undertaken as part of an active monitoring process (ref Cabinet Circular CO (10) 2).

Independent Quality Assurance – What Caravel provides

Caravel provides professional, independent quality assurance for projects and programmes. We only use highly experienced project managers to conduct a review. Their experience is valuable in assessing the health of a project and judging what areas require more detailed review and analysis.

Caravel’s proprietary IQA process has been developed and enhanced over the course of many reviews of government and private sector projects. It includes a health rating that highlights areas that are being well managed and those that may require more attention.

Our general approach involves:

  • Collecting information about the project
  • Analysing it and providing a contextual comparison with good practice project management and governance
  • Recommending improvements where appropriate
  • Documenting findings and recommendations in a report
  • Applying quality assurance to the report
  • Presenting the report to the project Sponsor

The review considers the organisation’s programme or project management methodology (often MSP, PRINCE2, PMBOK or a combination) and looks at governance, structure, benefits, risks, scope, costs, schedule, procurement, business change, communications, and other items that may affect the success of the project.

Caravel also provides technical reviews that drill down into a specific part of a project. This may include a review of business case development, procurement process, business requirements, security or testing.

The real service that Caravel provides is assurance to the Sponsor that the health of a project is understood – the good and the bad – and a way forward is presented.