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10. Project profile model (PPM)

The project profile model (PPM) must be completed and submitted for projects with a total estimated investment (TEI) greater than $5 million.

What is the project profile model (PPM)?

The PPM is the first step in the gateway process. It provides a standard set of high-level criteria for assessing the degree of complexity of a proposed asset investment. The PPM should be used as a starting point in assessing the likely levels of risk associated with the program / project. It is a high level indicator and not an exhaustive risk analysis model, although it can form the basis of a fuller program/project risk analysis. The PPM is contained in the spreadsheet below.

- Excel icon Project Profile Model (470kb, MS Excel)
Any project over $5m requires a PPM to completed as part of the business case.

How is the spreadsheet used?

The questions in the PPM are designed to be self-explanatory. Questions with a round button should have the most appropriate question clicked whilst questions with a square button should have all applicable options clicked.

The PPM is a single spreadsheet that is to be used for all programs/projects for Gateway Reviews 1 to 6. The senior responsible owner (SRO) / program manager (PM) completing the PPM should enter the relevant program/project details as accurately as possible; confirming which gateway review is relevant, costs and benefits, key contacts and, where applicable, identify known links between the program/project to be reviewed and overarching programs or supporting projects.

Where a precise response to a question is not available the SRO / PM should use their best estimate in light of their knowledge and experience. Once completed the PPM will automatically calculate the PPM total score. Based on this PPM total score, the program/project will be classified as either low, medium or high risk as outlined below.

What do the PPM total score and classifications mean?

The PPM total score classifies a program/project as either low, medium or high risk in accordance with the following:

  • PPM total score of 20 or less indicates that the program / project is relatively low risk. For low risk projects, departments or agencies should establish and manage their own internal review process.
  • PPM total score in the range of 21-40 indicates that the program / project is medium risk. For medium risk projects, an independent team leader will be appointed by the gateway unit to lead an independent departmental / agency review team which is nominated by the department / agency from resources outside the project team. 
  • PPM total score of 41 or more indicates that the program / project is high risk. For high-risk projects, the gateway unit appoints both a review team and team leader independent of the department or agency.

Please note that the PPM total scores are guidelines only. Where the program / project is on the boundary between low / medium or medium / high risk, or is particularly critical / sensitive, then organisations may choose to apply a different risk rating to the program / project.

Any decision to alter the risk classification of a program / project from that defined by the program / projects PPM total score should be agreed with the department and the gateway unit.

What is the difference between programs and projects?

Programs are about managing change, with a strategic vision and plan of how to get there: they are able to deal with uncertainty about achieving the vision.

Projects have definite start and finish dates, a clearly defined output and a well-defined development path: benefits are achieved after the project has finished.