How do we assess and approve projects?

We have lots of ideas abouthow we can transform government. In fact, we have so many ideas that there are more projects than there is funding. We needed a way to prioritise projects for funding that maximises outcomes for NSW. So we developed a two-step process: 

  1. We work across the sector to build a pipeline of projects 
  2. For projects that make it into the pipeline, we help you write a business case. 

The pipeline 

We have developed a method of prioritising project proposals. We call this our pipeline. 

    Based on information you provide to us, but before we ask you to complete a business case, we assess how well projects meet the following criteria. 

    Find out more about our Pipeline Prioritisation November 2020 

    Strategic alignment  


    • What are the primary and secondary financial benefits of doing the project? (revenue, cost and time savings)  
    • Will any jobs be created as part of the project or because of the project? 
    • When will intended benefits/ value be realised?  
    • Will this project involve multi-agency/ cluster collaboration?  


    • How many customers will directly benefit from this project? 
    • How many regional customers, Aboriginal or Torre Strait Islander customers or people living with a disability in NSW will benefit?  
    • How robust is your evidence? 


    • What is the impact of not receiving funding in this financial year?  
    • What are the risks in your project?  
    • Are there any relevant legislative requirements? 

    At this point, we will recommend to Digital Restart Fund Steering Committee which projects we think should be funded, along with an indication of when projects are likely to progress to the next stage of the approval process.  

    We make adjustments to the pipeline quarterly with the next review scheduled for early 2021.  

    If your project is put into the pipeline, we will let you know and work with you to prepare your business case. 

    To enter your project into the pipeline, make sure you are prepared with the above information and contact us to get the contact details of your cluster representative. 

    Investment prioritisation  

    Now that we have worked out which projects we think should be funded, we assess the business cases. We call this investment prioritisation. 

    We look at the maturity and readiness of the project (that is, how much discovery or pre-discovery has been done) and think about the most appropriate funding pathway. Projects are scored according to customer needs, economic benefits, delivery approach and risk profile. We also look at how well projects meet the intention of the fund, including: 

    Strategy: how well the project aligns to Cluster objectives and existing government priorities 

    Feasibility/ Deliverability: does the project team have the skills and capacity to deliver the project 

    Economic viability: what is the net benefit to the state (improving economic growth, productivity or safety). We look at cost-benefit analysis and score them against other projects.  
    Affordability: can we afford to do this project in NSW? What are the long-term funding implications? Is it sustainable?  

    Desirability (Social impact): what is the positive impact on the customer? Does it align with NSW’s Social Impact Investment Policy 

    Every year we will go through this prioritisation process to make sure that projects being funded are delivering and that we are funding the right projects at the right time. 

    To read more about how to prepare your business case, go to How to apply for funding 

    We want to improve. Send your feedback or suggestions to [email protected] 

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