Audit Scotland Review of the Glow Programme

On 24 June The Scottish Government public expenditure watchdog Audit Scotland published a review of 20 major capital projects including  Glow.

Overview
Audit Scotland noted that Glow had already been the subject of a number of external reviews including several using the OGC Gateway Process and that the programme was characterised by the close working relationship between the Scottish Government, LTS and RM Education.

Cost
In this category Glow received the highest rating – Good:
‘Still working within the £37.5m overall budget for the contract, currently £105k ahead of this figure. Milestone payments have been challenged where appropriate and delayed until deliverables have been achieved’.

Time
Glow received the middle rating  – Adequate – in this category:
‘Go-live has slipped by several months but costs have not increased due to fixed price contract agreed. Delay due in part to time taken for local authorities to sign up to the customer agreement.’

Quality
The Glow programme was again given the highest rating – Good:
‘The project has undergone several Gateway Reviews, with an initial review in June 2003.  Gateway 3 Investment Decision review in April 2005 and interim health-check prior to contract signoff in August 2005.’

Audit Scotland noted that lessons learned from each pilot phase have been acted upon and tested again in subsequent phases. The practice of tracking issues, progress and changes on weekly basis was also noted.

Project Management and Governance
Glow was also evaluated for project management and governance with three assessment levels available: Basic Practices; Adequate – Improving Practices; and Advanced practices.

Glow has been assessed as demonstrating  Advanced Practices for ‘Planning’, ‘Execution’ and ‘Business Acceptance’.

Glow is the only one of the 20 projects rated as demonstrating Advanced Practices for ‘Planning’, and is one of only two projects in the other areas to be deemed to demonstrate Advanced Practices for anything at all.

Glow was given the middle rating, Adequate – Improving Practices, for ‘Vision and Direction’ and for ‘Measuring and Monitoring’.

Conclusion
Great to see the hard work and excellent project and programme disciplines that underpin Glow being given due recognition by Audit Scotland. However, there is certainly no complacency within LTS and The Glow Team LTS will investigate the detail of Audit Scotland’s findings to ensure the continuous improvement of Glow and to inform the future development of Glow v2.

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