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Assurance of Action Plan Process - guidance

Assurance of Action Plan (AAP) reviews

These are short, focused reviews that occur if the Delivery Confidence Assessment (DCA) rating is red or amber/red.  They are conducted on behalf of the senior responsible owner (SRO) by the review team leader (RTL), with the support of one of the review team members (RTM), if necessary.

The review assesses whether the action plan produced to address the recommendations identified during the Independent Assurance Review (IAR) is being pursued effectively and will, if implemented, put the programme/project back on track.

What does it apply to?

Assessment for the review is carried out if the DCA of the programme or project is red or amber/red.

How does it work?

If a follow-up assurance of action plan looks appropriate, the review team leader will discuss it with the SRO during the emerging finding sessions of the IAR and note it in the report. Following receipt of the report, the PPM-CoE should approach the SRO to establish whether an AAP review is appropriate.  If the need for a review is agreed, the PPM-CoE contact the review team and establish dates for the review.

A planning meeting should take place to discuss:

  • how the programme/project has progressed since the independant assurance review
  • to agree the scope of the AAP review
  • create a list of interviewees and the documents that need to be sent

A short update on progress and an updated action plan is provided prior to the meeting.

The review day

The review follows after the final report (about three months). Reviews are normally conducted over one day with interviews and evidence gathering.

The report provides a re‑assessment of the delivery confidence assessment but may not contain recommendations.

A draft report is presented to the SRO at the conclusion of the review and provides an opportunity to discuss its contents with the review team. Over the following week, the SRO and RTL agree a ‘final' report that the SRO copies to the PPM-CoE.

Report distribution

The PPM-CoE sends the DCA statement and a summary of report recommendations, if any, to the SRO and relevant organisational/Scottish Government accountable officer. Where appropriate, the DCA and summary recommendations is also sent to:

  • Scottish Government’s Director, Procurement and Commercial
  • the Chief Information Officer
  • Deputy Director, Infrastructure Investment
  • Director of Digital

The SRO is responsible for further circulation of the report as necessary to stakeholders and team members. The SRO is also responsible for considering any Freedom of Information requests for the release of the report.

Capturing feedback

Following the review, the Scottish Government’s Assurance Director seeks feedback from the SRO and the review team to ensure the review process achieves and maintains high quality standards.