Gateway Review Process

The Australian Government has introduced the Gateway Review Process (Gateway) to strengthen the oversight and governance of major projects/programs and assist Financial Management and Accountability Act 1997 (FMA Act) agencies to deliver agreed projects/programs in accordance with the stated objectives.

Gateway involves short, intensive reviews at critical points in the project/program's lifecycle by a team of reviewers not associated with the project/program. This provides an arm's length assessment of the project/program against its specified objectives, and an early identification of areas requiring corrective action.

What Projects/Programs Does Gateway Apply To?

Gateway applies to new projects/programs undertaken by Financial Management and Accountability Act 1997 (FMA Act) agencies, which require Government approval and which satisfy certain financial and risk thresholds.

The financial thresholds are met where a project/program has:

  • Projects: with a total cost estimated to be $30 million or more for procurement or infrastructure; or with an estimated total cost of $30 million or more including an ICT component of at least $10 million.
  • Programs valued over $50 million.

If a project/program is assessed as High Risk (refer to Risk Potential Assessment Tool) the Government may agree to require Gateway reviews at times appropriate to the project/program's life cycle. (Please refer to the Gateway Guidance and Handbook for an explanation of the Gate reviews).

Once selected for inclusion in Gateway, a project/program will be assigned a review team by the Assurance Reviews Branch in consultation with the agency. The review team comprises experienced and qualified reviewers. The reviews consist of a half day planning meeting and the onsite review activity which will be completed in four to five days. On the last day of the review, the review team will provide a confidential report to the Senior Responsible Official (SRO) in the sponsoring agency and the Assurance Reviews Branch.

The report will summarise the status of the project/program and make recommendations to improve the implementation of the project/program. The SRO is responsible for determining and implementing any required actions to address recommendations of a Gateway Review Report.

Gateway and the ICT Two Pass Review Processes

Gateway is designed to assist the Sponsoring Agency to deliver its project objectives. It involves conducting a series of brief, independent reviews at critical stages in the development and implementation of a project.  It is therefore, a project assurance methodology.

The overall objectives of the ICT Two Pass Processes are slightly different to Gateway in that they primarily focus on providing Government with better business cases and cost estimates to support the decision making process whereas Gateway focuses on the overall project delivery throughout the life of the project. There is a complementary overlap between Gateway and the ICT Two Pass Processes during the initial phases of a project. For example the Gate 0 and Gate 1 reviews can best be scheduled shortly before the first and second pass respectively and can provide pragmatic and timely contributions to these.

ICT Two Pass Process - Further information

Lessons Learned

The purpose of Lessons Learned Reports are to present the Lessons Learned arising from Australian Government Gateway reviews to assist agencies in improving their project management practices.  The reports are observations gained from Gateway reviews which highlight opportunities for project management improvements in Australian Government agencies.

Finance prepares lessons learned periodically and these are available from our website. The Lessons Learned Reports also include references to Australian Government better practice and other well established better practice guidance.

Back to top

Contact for information on this page: Assurance Reviews