United Kingdom

The Challenge

Network Rail required an independent benchmarking review of the Great Western Route Modernisation (GWRM) Programme. IPA was commissioned to assess Network Rail’s approach to delivering the programme, its relative performance and overall capability, as well as its interfaces with the Office of Rail and Road (ORR) and Department for Transport (DfT).

Our Solution

IPA initially assessed Network Rail project team’s delivery and management capabilities through a review of their documents and a series of structured interviews. This enabled us to assess Network Rail against best practice used in other organisations.

Our analysis had four parts:

  • Competence assessment of the GWRM leadership relative to their assigned roles and responsibilities. We interviewed individuals and groups from teams across the project to determine the team’s overall level of competence;
  • Processes assessment of whether Network Rail’s programme and project management systems and processes are fit for purpose and implemented properly. We also investigated Network Rail’s relationship with certain suppliers;
  • Regulatory interfaces assessment on the management of external sponsors’ (DfT and ORR) requirements at the programme and project level through well-defined change control procedures; and
  • High-level benchmarking to validate our conclusions against the practices in other organisations in delivering similar major infrastructure programmes internationally.

IPA identified a number of recommendations to improve the delivery and operation of the GWRM Programme. The client accepted and promptly implemented these recommendations.