When to expect your funding letter
It generally takes 2 to 3 weeks to receive a decision on your funding request after:
- Submitting your business case (for funding requests below the DMCDD threshold)
- Presenting to the DMCDD (for funding requests presented to and approved by the DMCDD)
I don’t have my funding letter yet
If you haven’t received your funding letter yet, there are still things you can do to prepare to receive your funding.
Remember, you can’t capitalize any expenses before you receive your funding letter. If you make any purchases before you receive your letter, they’re considered operating expenses and are paid by your ministry’s operating budget. Once you receive you funding letter, you can start to make capital purchases for your project.
In the meantime, we do recommend that you take steps to start your project. A common challenge we see with project teams is a delayed start to project work. Here are 3 crucial things you can do to get started.
You can start procuring necessary items and services, like hosting, networking and government communications support. Make sure the deadline to cancel the procurement is at least a few weeks after you expect to receive your funding letter. If an issue arises and your funding is delayed or declined, you can cancel the procurement.
Your ministry contact can help you find and procure the items and services you need.
Identify and onboard your project team
Start to identify the internal delivery team for your project. If you need to hire staff to form the team, you should start that process.
There are restrictions on capitalizing salaries.
Begin privacy and security requirements
Contact your ministry privacy officer (MPO) and ministry information security officer (MISO) to determine what is required to complete the privacy and security requirements for your project.
I’ve received my funding letter
Your funding letter outlines the details of your funding, your responsibilities for reporting on your project and specifies any conditions you need to meet.
You are responsible for reporting on your project’s progress and status. Reporting helps keep the DIO and the DMCDD updated on your progress throughout the lifetime of your project.
Reporting requirements vary. Your funding letter will inform you of any reporting requirements related to your project.
A condition is a requirement your project team must complete either by the date specified in the condition or by the end of the project. The DMCDD may withhold some or all of your project’s capital funding until the condition is met.
There are standard funding conditions that apply to every capital-funded project. For example, every project will have a funding condition related to the completion of KPIs.
Your funding approval may also have conditions that are specific to your project. We use these conditions to provide initial funding to projects that have a strong business case, but that we think would benefit from ongoing monitoring.
The DIO will always discuss a condition with your ministry to ensure that the condition and timing are feasible, and to ensure that the condition is necessary.
Example conditions can include, but are not limited to:
- A report back related to a specific part of your project
- A demonstration of the product
- A request to invite the DIO to your sprint reviews or project governance meetings
- A request for data, financial forecasts, updated project plans or other information about your project or its activities
- A request for your team or ministry to take specific action such as developing a common component, connecting with a subject matter expert or participating in an independent third-party review
Make sure you read your funding letter in full and that you understand your funding conditions. We strongly recommend that you set reminders for key dates related to your funding conditions, so you don’t miss important deliverables or due dates.
If you have questions about your funding letter, contact your DIO portfolio contact.
Make sure your ministry submits all the necessary documentation for your project, to avoid potential delays. This includes Capital Planning System registration and a Work in Progress Asset Number request.
Register your project in the Capital Planning System
Ministries must register projects with a total value equal or greater than $1,000,000 in the Treasury Board’s Capital Planning System. Work with your ministry contact to ensure your ministry registers your project.
Get your Work in Progress (WIP) asset number
You need a WIP asset number to record capital spend for your project. A Work-in-Progress (WIP) represents the cost incurred on a project to-date. The DIO uses your WIP asset number to track project spending. Every time your ministry finance team transfers project invoices to the DIO, the journal voucher (JV) is recorded against your project’s WIP asset number.
Work with your ministry contact to confirm that your ministry has submitted a WIP asset number request form for your project.
Key performance indicators (KPIs)
In your business case, you created project outcome statements and success metrics. Now it’s time to take those outcomes and metrics, refine them and create key performance indicators (KPIs).
What are KPIs
You’ll use your KPIs over the lifetime of your project to evaluate how well your project is achieving its intended outcomes. Your KPIs are based on the outcome and success metric statements you identified in your business case, with the addition of specific, measurable baselines and outcomes.
KPIs and success metrics are both ways to measure and track your project. The DIO may also ask you to create milestones for your project. Each serves a unique purpose.
Success metrics tell us if the desired outcome is being, or has been, achieved. You created these in your business case. For example:
- Increase in online registrations
Help us understand how well your team is achieving the desired results. They are measurable and include baseline and target values. For example:
- Adoption of our online registration system will increase to 50% after the latest iteration of our website; up from the current 33% adoption rate
Important points in the project lifecycle to mark when key stages have been achieved. If you have KPIs that you can’t measure until your product is finished or in use, we may ask you to identify milestones to demonstrate the progress of your project. For example:
- User acceptance testing will begin by March 15
Creating your KPIs
Once you have your outcomes and success metrics, you need to create KPIs. Your KPIs should help you clearly define the benefits you want to realize from your project.
While writing your KPIs, remember that:
- Like success metrics, strong KPIs are SMART
- Your project should have between 3 and 5 KPIs in total
- At least one KPI should be measurable during the life of the project
- Each of your outcome statements needs at least one KPI
A complete KPI has several components. For example, consider the following KPI:
- By 2025, the average time it takes a customer to complete and submit applications will decrease to 2 days from the current 2 weeks
Here’s how you would break it down in the success metric and KPI template:
2. Success metric statement
5. Measurement method and frequency
Decrease time to complete and submit applications.
Initial customer wait times to complete an application submission is two weeks.
By 2025, we aim to reduce application completion and submission time to two days.
We will compare the submission date to the date the application record was created.
KPI is on track. Wait times are trending downwards.
- Relating KPIs to outcomes. Your outcome statements represent the goals of your project. Use the outcome statements you created in your business case. Every outcome statement needs at least one KPI
- Success metric statement. Use the success metrics you created in your business case. Remember, your success metric statements need to have a direction (increase, decrease or maintain). For example: Decrease time to complete and submit applications
- Baseline measurement. Each of your KPIs needs a baseline. A baseline is a starting point used for comparison. You need to identify a baseline for each of your outcome statements. If you can’t determine a baseline, then it’s possible that your KPI isn’t measurable. By determining baselines, you’ll ensure that all your KPIs are measurable. For example: Initial customer wait times to complete an application submission is 2 weeks. If you’re developing a net new product or service then your KPI baseline may be zero
- Targets. Your target is the KPI level you aim to achieve and includes the date you aim to achieve it by. For example: By 2025, we aim to reduce application completion and submission time to 2 days
- Measurement method and frequency. You’ll report your KPIs on a bi-annual basis. Provide details on how you will track and measure each KPI. For example: We will compare the submission date to the date the application record was created
- Status updates. Track status updates for each KPI. You’ll inform the DIO of status updates on a regular basis. This column can help you keep track of updates for the DIO, including what’s going well or what isn’t going to plan
Tips to create strong KPIs
Remember that your KPIs need to focus on what’s good for your project’s health. Reflect on what your objectives are for the project and then ask yourself: How can I measure that?
- Try sharing the potential KPI with a colleague who isn’t involved in the project. Does it make sense to them? Can they understand it?
- If you need to adjust any of your KPIs later in your project, contact your DIO portfolio contact. For example, an approved change in the scope of your project may trigger changes in your KPIs. If this happens, we’ll work with you to revise your KPIs so they reflect the new scope
Submit your success metric and KPI document
Before you submit your success metric and KPI document, they must be approved by your:
- Ministry Chief Information Officer (MCIO)
- Executive project sponsor
You must include proof of each approval in your submission. Approvers can either:
- Apply a digital signature directly in the document
- Attach an email to your submission that states their approval
Once you’ve received the necessary approvals, submit your success metric and KPI document through the DIO Service Portal.
Remember, you can make changes to your KPIs as your project progresses. If you do, make sure you update your success metric and KPI document and submit an updated version to the DIO Service Portal.
You need to report on the progress of your KPIs on a regular basis through ongoing engagement with the DIO. The DIO will arrange a reporting schedule for you to report on your success metrics and KPIs.
Don’t forget, there are other steps you need to take to report on your project. Make sure you understand how and when to use each type of report.
Project templates, forms and documents