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Introduction

This section is about the Transport Agency’s approach to investment performance measurement.

It provides a brief overview of:

  • why investment performance measurement is important
  • the role of investment performance measurement in the business case approach (BCA)
  • the Transport Agency’s framework for investment performance measurement
  • the benefits of the framework
  • how to use it
  • where to find it
  • the research behind the framework.

Why measure investment performance

Investment performance measurement is important because it helps us (the Transport Agency, and our investment partners) to:

  • determine whether the investment has achieved its intended benefits
  • learn from this for future investment decisions
  • fulfil our respective reporting requirements
  • be accountable for the money we spend on the public's behalf.

Role in transport planning and project delivery

Throughout all stages of the transport planning and project delivery process, it is essential to consider how performance will be measured. In particular under the BCA, early identification of measures for the expected benefits is a key step in planning an investment.

Once the activity has been implemented, the Transport Agency will use the measures to review the performance of the investment. This will show whether the investment is a success and will help to shape future investments.

The structure of the performance framework

To make it easier to measure investment performance, the Transport Agency has developed a framework for this purpose.

Components of the framework:

  • The framework consists of five outcome classes - network performance and capability, safety, health, environment, and cost.
  • Layers provide additional structure.
  • Each outcome class is further split into investment benefits.
  • The investment benefits are populated with performance measures.

While working with the framework throughout the BCA, it is important to also consider which Government Policy Statement(external link) (GPS) results the activity will contribute to, as this information is required as part of the funding application. 

 

  • Layers

    Here is an overview of the four layers and their role in the BCA. We have used the 'network performance and capability' outcome class as an example.

    Image of the 4 layers of the investment performance measurement framework

     

    The layers are based on the driver/pressure/state/response concept:

    The four layers of the investment performance measurement framework

     

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  • Investment benefits and performance measures

    The investment benefits and performance measures can help to identify the benefits and key performance indicators in investment logic and benefits mapping workshops in the BCA.

    Performance measures currently primarily cover the 'network performance and capability' and 'safety' outcome classes. We are developing measures for the other three outcome classes and will be adding these over time. We will also update existing measures as more effective measures are developed. 

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Benefits of the framework

The key benefits of the investment performance measurement framework are:

  • It provides a structured set of measures so that users are no longer obliged to come up with their own
  • It is politically robust, so that while strategic priorities, and therefore the investment focus, may change over time, the framework itself will remain valid
  • The framework may be used throughout the entire investment process, i.e. for developing the strategic case, including investment logic and benefits mapping, as part of the business case approach, when preparing a funding application (together with GPS impacts) and for benefit realisation reviews.

To identify which activities require performance measures see Activities required to have performance measures.

How to select measures

In the early stages of business case development, as part of the problem identification and benefits mapping workshops, approved organisations and the Transport Agency (state highways) will select initial measures for each of the benefits the investment is expected to deliver. These measures will be included in the strategic case and will need to be revisited and firmed up as the business case progresses.

The process is as follows:

  1. Workshop participants will identify which outcome classes are relevant for each of the expected benefits from the investment.
  2. The participants will then identify the investment benefits to be targeted by the investment, and finally the appropriate measures.

Please see below for an illustration of how this fits into the BCA process.

 

  • Selecting measures

    Selecting measures

    A lot of the discussion and agreement around performance measures for the expected investment benefits will happen in the strategic case phase of the Business Case Approach:

    Overview of selecting performance measures in the business case approach

    The table below provides a worked example for selecting performance measures:

    Worked example how to select measures

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List of measures

list of performance measures is  available for the outcome classes:

  • network performance and capability
  • safety
  • cost
  • health
  • environment.

The research behind the framework

The Transport Agency has based the investment performance measurement framework on sound research, including international best practice.

Research report 522: Blueprint for a best practice measurement indicator set and benchmarking sets out this research and is available at http://nzta.govt.nz/resources/research/reports/522/index.html(external link) 

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