Independent Verification & Validation (IV&V) Services

IV&V is the review of a project by an independent third party (outside the project team reporting hierarchy) to verify that the requirements are correctly defined and to validate that the system correctly implements the required functionality.
IV&V works alongside the project team and provides project observations, risks, issues and recommendations directly to the Project Sponsor and/or Steering Committee, COT OPM and any federally required agencies (i.e. CMS). This independence from the rest of the project reporting structure provides an unbiased view of the project and allows agency leadership to determine when intervention is needed or additional monitoring is required. 
The OPM provides the following services related to IV&V:
  • Compliance with CIO policy (CIO-103)
  • Administration of the Commonwealth’s IV&V Master Agreement with approved vendors
  • Delivery of IV&V services

     

Compliance with CIO Policy #103

CIO-103 requires Commonwealth agencies to collaborate with the Office of Project Management (OPM) on a project risk assessment before the agency formally approves any IT project of such size and complexity that it requires reporting to the CIO (see threshold details here). The risk assessment will determine the level of IV&V, if any, required for that specific project.
The project risk assessment must be performed prior to the project’s budget being finalized so that any costs associated with IV&V can be included in the project’s budget before the budget is finalized. This assessment can be performed within one week and there is no cost associated with the assessment. To get an assessment scheduled, please contact OPM. 
The policy was originally published in 2018, revised in 2020, and applies to all new IT projects as of 7/1/20. You can find the current version of the policy here.

 

Administration of the Commonwealth's IV&V Master Agreement

The Commonwealth has established a master agreement with five vendors to deliver IV&V services. All vendor provided IV&V services must be performed by the vendors currently on contract. The OPM assists agencies in the bid process, establishing SOWs, invoicing, IV&V vendor management and similar contract administration tasks.
CIO-103 requires agencies to include a portion of each project’s IV&V budget (when IV&V is required) for OPM’s contract administration and vendor oversight services. The cost of these services are defined for each project based upon the size, scope and duration of the project and are typically a small portion of the cost of the IV&V vendor services for the project.
 
 

Delivery of IV&V Services

As an alternative to the vendors on the IV&V Master Agreement, OPM will provide IV&V services to agencies, when it is a better fit for that project, rather than using a vendor. This, typically, is the case when the IV&V effort requires less than one FTE or is a point in time assessment instead of ongoing IV&V.
 

FAQs About IV&V in the Commonwealth

Q: What is IV&V?
A: IV&V is the review of a project by an independent third party (outside the project team reporting hierarchy) to verify that the requirements are correctly defined and to validate that the system correctly implements the required functionality.
 
Q: What does IV&V do/How does IV&V work?
A: IV&V provides an independent view of project progress and performance to the project’s sponsor and/or executive team, which could include federal partners (ex. CMS). The involvement IV&V takes varies by project based upon each project’s risk profile. Some typical IV&V activities are observation of the project team and project meetings, interviews with stakeholders, review of project documents/deliverables, etc. The IV&V team works with the project team and provides project observations, risks, issues and recommendations directly to the Project Sponsor and/or Steering Committee, COT OPM and any federally required agencies (i.e. CMS). IV&V typically provides their observations to the project sponsor and/or steering committee via a report on a weekly or monthly basis.
 
Q: When is IV&V required?
A: A project risk analysis will be conducted during the Requesting phase of the project to determine whether IV&V is required, and the level of IV&V required, if any. This is a collaborative effort between the agency and the COT OPM.
 
Q: When is the project risk assessment performed?
A: CIO policy requires all projects, meeting the threshold for reporting to the CIO, have a project risk assessment performed during the Requesting phase of the project. The assessment will take place prior to any procurement activities (Ex. RFP), in advance of the agency formally approving the project and before finalizing the project’s budget.
 
Q: How do I get a project risk assessment started?
A: Contact the COT OPM.
 
Q: How long does a project risk assessment take?
A: Once OPM receives a request, the assessment can typically be completed within 1 week, assuming agency resources are available.
Q: How much does COT charge to perform a project risk assessment?
A: There is no charge for COT to perform a project risk assessment.
 
Q: Who performs IV&V services?
A: The Commonwealth has established a master agreement with five vendors who are approved to perform IV&V services for the Commonwealth. The COT OPM may also perform IV&V services. OPM will work with agencies to select the best IV&V service provider for each project.
 
Q: How much does IV&V cost?
A: Since IV&V services are defined based upon each project’s risk profile, the scope of each engagement, and thus, the cost, are project specific. Typically, projects with a budget of $10M or more include 5% of their budget for IV&V services. Projects with smaller budgets allocate 5%-10% of their budget for IV&V. These budget estimates are inclusive of vendor services and any COT IV&V oversight services required.
 
 
 
This page was last modified 5/1/2020 1:29 PM

 

 

 

 
 
 
 
 
 

Project Management Resources

The list below contains resources that may be helpful to project managers. This is not a comprehensive list.
 
      
 
  

Contact COT OPM

Patrick Quirk
Executive Director 
Office of Project Management
(502) 782-7998


Office Address:
     - 500 Mero Street
       Frankfort, KY  40601