Eastern Kentucky University Homeland Security Reflection Paper

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Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program Volume I: HSEEP Overview and Exercise Program Management Revised February 2007 This page is intentionally blank. HSEEP Volume I Preface Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program (HSEEP) Volume I was initially published in 2002 and provided an overview of the exercise design, development, conduct, evaluation, and improvement planning process as well as doctrine for U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) exercises. Subsequent volumes (II–IV) provided more detailed descriptions of the planning and evaluation process as well as sample exercise materials. Since the initial versions of the HSEEP volumes were published, the homeland security community has experienced numerous changes, including the building of a new and cohesive Federal agency and the release and adoption of the National Response Plan (NRP), National Incident Management System (NIMS), National Preparedness Goal, Universal Task List (UTL), and Target Capabilities List (TCL). This 2007 release of the HSEEP volumes represents an exercise policy and program reflective of these changes. The following changes have been made: • The volumes have been made more user-friendly and concise. • New policies have been incorporated (e.g., NIMS, NRP, National Preparedness Goal, UTL, TCL). • References to DHS-specific doctrinal or grant-related requirements, such as the need for terrorism-related scenarios, have been eliminated. • Comments from the Federal Interagency, as well as several State and local stakeholders, have been incorporated so the HSEEP Policy and Guidance is more applicable to all exercises, regardless of scope, scale, scenario, or sponsoring agency. • The order of Volumes II and III has been reversed to follow the natural progression of exercise design, development, conduct, evaluation, and improvement planning. It is important to note that the fundamentals of the exercise design, development, planning, evaluation, and improvement planning methodologies have not changed with these volume revisions. Developing and implementing comprehensive exercise policies is a continually evolving process. As strategies, policies, and plans evolve, future revisions will be issued. Preface i This page is intentionally blank. HSEEP Volume I Contents Preface............................................................................................................................................. i Introduction....................................................................................................................................v Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program................................................................v Purpose.....................................................................................................................................v Organization.............................................................................................................................v Security Guidance...................................................................................................................... vi Chapter 1: Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program Overview........................ 1 The Preparedness Cycle.............................................................................................................. 2 Exercise Program Management .................................................................................................. 3 Exercise Project Management..................................................................................................... 3 The HSEEP Blended Approach .................................................................................................. 4 Chapter 2: Exercise Program Management............................................................................... 5 Multi-Year Planning ................................................................................................................... 5 Training and Exercise Plan Workshop ................................................................................... 6 Corrective Action Program ..................................................................................................... 6 Engaging Program Stakeholders................................................................................................. 6 Identifying Exercise Stakeholders .......................................................................................... 7 Communicating with Exercise Stakeholders .......................................................................... 7 Resource Management................................................................................................................ 7 Exercise Budget Management ................................................................................................ 7 Program Staffing..................................................................................................................... 8 Non-Monetary Resources ....................................................................................................... 8 Exercise Phases........................................................................................................................... 8 Exercise Types ............................................................................................................................ 9 Discussion-Based Exercises.................................................................................................. 10 Seminars............................................................................................................................ 10 Workshops ........................................................................................................................ 10 Tabletop Exercises ............................................................................................................ 10 Games ............................................................................................................................... 11 Operations-Based Exercises.................................................................................................. 11 Drills ................................................................................................................................. 11 Functional Exercises ......................................................................................................... 11 Full-Scale Exercises.......................................................................................................... 12 Chapter 3: Exercise Project Management Overview .............................................................. 13 Phase 1: Foundation.................................................................................................................. 13 Exercise Planning Timelines................................................................................................. 13 Exercise Planning Team ....................................................................................................... 13 Exercise Planning Conferences............................................................................................. 14 Phase 2: Design and Development ........................................................................................... 15 Capabilities, Tasks, and Objectives ...................................................................................... 16 Scenario................................................................................................................................. 16 Documentation...................................................................................................................... 16 Contents iii HSEEP Volume I Logistics................................................................................................................................ 17 Phase 3: Exercise Conduct........................................................................................................ 17 Setup ..................................................................................................................................... 17 Presentations/Briefings ......................................................................................................... 18 Personnel............................................................................................................................... 18 Phase 4: Evaluation................................................................................................................... 18 Hot Wash and Debrief .......................................................................................................... 18 After Action Report / Improvement Plan.............................................................................. 19 Phase 5: Improvement Planning ............................................................................................... 19 Improvement Plan................................................................................................................. 19 Improvement Tracking and Planning.................................................................................... 19 Chapter 4: Capabilities-Based Exercises and Program Management................................... 20 Capabilities-Based Exercise Program Management................................................................. 20 Background ........................................................................................................................... 20 Capabilities-Based Planning Tools in Exercise Program Management ............................... 21 Planning, Conducting, and Evaluating Capabilities-Based Exercises ...................................... 22 Foundation ............................................................................................................................ 23 Design and Development...................................................................................................... 23 Conduct ................................................................................................................................. 24 Evaluation ............................................................................................................................. 24 Improvement Planning.......................................................................................................... 26 Appendix A: Exercise Programs and Resources.................................................................... A-1 Appendix B: Glossary............................................................................................................... B-1 Appendix C: Exercise Planning Timelines ............................................................................. C-1 Figures and Tables Figure 2-1: Improvement planning in the preparedness cycle........................................................ 6 Table 2-1: Properties of the seven HSEEP exercise types.............................................................. 9 Figure 3-1: Depiction of an ICS-based exercise planning team ................................................... 14 Table 3-1: Exercise Planning Conferences................................................................................... 15 Table 4-1: Notional multi-year training and exercise schedule ................................................... 21 Figure 4-1: Referencing capabilities and tasks to create exercise objectives and scenarios ....... 24 Figure 4-2: Improvement planning in the preparedness cycle...................................................... 25 Contents iv HSEEP Volume I Introduction Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program Following the domestic terrorist attacks in 1993, 1995, and 2001 and the establishment of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) in 2002, officials at all levels of government and in all types of communities have worked to prepare for, prevent, respond to, and recover from a variety of threats to public safety. Exercises play a crucial role in preparedness, providing opportunities for emergency responders and officials to practice and assess their collective capabilities. Purpose The purpose of the Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program (HSEEP) is to provide common exercise policy and program guidance that constitutes a national standard for exercises. HSEEP includes consistent terminology that can be used by all exercise planners, regardless of the nature and composition of their sponsoring agency or organization. The volumes also provide tools to help exercise managers plan, conduct, and evaluate exercises to improve overall preparedness. HSEEP reflects lessons learned and best practices from existing exercise programs and can be adapted to the full spectrum of hazardous scenarios and incidents (e.g., natural disasters, terrorism, technological disasters). The HSEEP reference volumes integrate language and concepts from the National Response Plan (NRP), the National Incident Management System (NIMS), the National Preparedness Goal, the Universal Task List (UTL), the Target Capabilities List (TCL), existing exercise programs, and prevention and response protocols from all levels of government. In the spirit of NIMS, all efforts should be made to ensure consistent use of the terminology and processes described in HSEEP. Organization This document is the first of five HSEEP volumes, all of which are available at the HSEEP website (http://hseep.dhs.gov). The volumes are organized as follows: HSEEP Volume I: HSEEP Overview and Exercise Program Management provides guidance for building and maintaining an effective exercise program and summarizes the planning and evaluation process described in further detail in Volumes II through V. HSEEP Volume II: Exercise Planning and Conduct helps planners outline a standardized foundation, design, development, and conduct process adaptable to any type of exercise. HSEEP Volume III: Exercise Evaluation and Improvement Planning offers proven methodology for evaluating and documenting exercises and implementing an Improvement Plan (IP). HSEEP Volume IV: Sample Exercise Documents and Formats provides sample exercise materials referenced in HSEEP Volumes I, II, III, and V. Readers with Internet connectivity may click on exercise materials referenced in this volume to link to HSEEP Volume IV. HSEEP Volume V: Prevention Exercises (Draft) contains guidance consistent with the HSEEP model to assist entities in designing and evaluating exercises that validate preincident capabilities such as intelligence analysis and information sharing. This volume, HSEEP Volume I: HSEEP Overview and Exercise Program Management, which provides an overview of HSEEP and guidance on exercise program management, is organized as follows: Chapter 1: Introduction Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program Overview v HSEEP Volume I Chapter 2: Exercise Program Management Chapter 3: Exercise Project Management Overview Chapter 4: Capabilities-Based Exercises and Program Management Appendix A: Exercise Programs and Resources Appendix B: Glossary Appendix C: Exercise Planning Timelines Security Guidance While most of the content found in HSEEP is not sensitive or classified, some HSEEP materials (e.g., scenario examples), particularly those in Volume IV, may necessitate restrictions on distribution. Exercise materials that are produced in accordance with HSEEP guidance and are deemed sensitive should be designated as For Official Use Only (FOUO). FOUO identifies unclassified information of a sensitive nature, not otherwise categorized by statute or regulations, of which the unauthorized disclosure could adversely impact a person’s privacy or welfare, the conduct of Federal programs, or programs or operations essential to national interest. Examples of materials that may require FOUO designation include scenario information, the Master Scenario Events List (MSEL), and the After Action Report / Improvement Plan (AAR/IP). Access to FOUO information is on a need-to-know basis. FOUO information may be shared with other agencies; Federal, State, local, or tribal government; appropriate private sector representatives; and law enforcement officials, provided a specific need-to-know has been established and the information is shared in furtherance of a coordinated and official governmental activity. Certain exercise-related information from private sector partners may require or be eligible for additional protections under the Protective Critical Infrastructure Information (PCII) Program. Established pursuant to the Critical Infrastructure Information (CII) Act of 2002, the PCII Program is an information-protection tool that enables members of the private sector to submit proprietary, confidential, or sensitive infrastructure information to DHS with the assurance that the information will be protected from public disclosure. Under the PCII Program, information that satisfies the requirements of the CII Act of 2002 is protected from public disclosure under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), State and local disclosure laws, and use in civil litigation. DHS and other Federal, State, and local analysts use PCII in pursuit of a more secure homeland, focusing primarily on analyzing and securing critical infrastructure and protected systems, identifying vulnerabilities and developing risk assessments, and enhancing recovery preparedness measures. Introduction vi HSEEP Volume I Chapter 1: Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program Overview Building on the existing NEP [National Exercise Program], DHS [U.S. Department of Homeland Security] should coordinate the establishment of a NEEP [National Exercise and Evaluation Program] for homeland security related exercises . . . The NEEP should designate HSEEP as the common exercise methodology across all levels of government, so all exercises are using the same doctrine. ─ The Federal Response to Hurricane Katrina Lessons Learned, February 2006 Exercises allow personnel, from first responders to senior officials, to validate training and practice strategic and tactical prevention, protection, response, and recovery capabilities in a risk-reduced environment. Exercises are the primary tool for assessing preparedness and identifying areas for improvement, while demonstrating community resolve to prepare for major incidents. Exercises aim to help entities within the community gain objective assessments of their capabilities so that gaps, deficiencies, and vulnerabilities are addressed prior to a real incident. Well-designed and well-executed exercises are the most effective means of: • assessing and validating policies, plans, procedures, training, equipment, assumptions, and interagency agreements; • clarifying roles and responsibilities; • improving interagency coordination and communications; • identifying gaps in resources; • measuring performance; and • identifying opportunities for improvement. The Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program (HSEEP) is a capabilities- and performancebased1 exercise program that provides a standardized policy, methodology, and terminology for exercise design, development, conduct, evaluation, and improvement planning. HSEEP also provides tools and resources to facilitate the management of self-sustaining exercise programs. In accordance with Homeland Security Presidential Directive 8 (HSPD-8) and the National Preparedness Goal, HSEEP uses a capabilities-based approach to individual exercises and exercise program management. In the spirit of the National Incident Management System (NIMS), HSEEP promulgates standardized policies and terminology usable by officials and emergency responders at all levels of government. HSEEP has been accepted as the standardized policy and methodology for the execution of the National Exercise Program (NEP). The NEP is the Nation’s overarching exercise program formulated by the National Security Council / Homeland Security Council (NSC/HSC), and executed by the Federal Interagency. All interagency partners have adopted HSEEP as the methodology for all exercises that will be conducted as part of the NEP. 1 Capabilities- and performance-based exercises are further defined beginning on page 20. Chapter 1: HSEEP Overview 1 HSEEP Volume I The Preparedness Cycle NIMS defines the preparedness cycle as “planning, training, equipping, exercising, evaluating, and taking action to correct and mitigate.” Exercises play an important role in this broad preparedness cycle. Exercises provide opportunities for Federal, State, local, and tribal leaders; department and agency officials; private sector partners; and emergency responders to practice and test capabilities that have been built up through a coordinated process of planning, training, and making equipment purchases. Plans, training, and equipment, and the capabilities they represent, are validated through exercises. Exercise evaluation informs preparedness priorities by highlighting potential preparedness shortfalls in the areas of planning, organization, training, and equipment prior to real-world incidents. Subsequently, these priorities inform resource allocation, including training and equipment purchases, which enhance readiness, influence policy or program decisions, and become the basis for future exercises. The overarching framework provided by HSPD-8: National Preparedness guides preparedness cycle activities. Issued on December 17, 2003, HSPD-8 establishes policies to strengthen the preparedness of the United States to prevent and respond to threatened or actual domestic terrorist attacks, major disasters, and other emergencies by: • requiring a National Preparedness Goal that establishes measurable priorities and targets; • establishing mechanisms to improve delivery of Federal preparedness assistance to State, local, and tribal governments; and • outlining actions to strengthen preparedness capabilities of Federal, State, local, and tribal governments and their private sector partners. HSPD-8 complements and supports the earlier HSPD-5: Incident Management, which required the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to coordinate with other Federal departments and agencies—as well as State, local, and tribal governments and the private sector—to establish the National Response Plan (NRP) and NIMS. The NRP defines what needs to be done to manage a major incident, while NIMS defines how it needs to be done, using a standardized, consistent incident management system. DHS—in coordination with the heads of other Federal departments and agencies and in consultation with State, local, and tribal governments, non-governmental organizations, and private sector entities— developed the all-hazards National Preparedness Goal. The vision for the National Preparedness Goal is to: …engage Federal, State, local, and tribal entities; their private and non-governmental partners; and the general public to achieve and sustain risk-based target levels of capability to prevent, protect against, respond to, and recover from major incidents in order to minimize the impact on lives, property, and the economy. This goal is met by building and maintaining capabilities to prevent, protect against, respond to, and recover from major incidents, both natural and man-made. The ability of the homeland security community to achieve and sustain these capabilities requires engaging in capabilities-based planning by orienting the aforementioned preparedness cycle activities (planning, training, equipping, exercising, evaluating, and improvement planning) to achieve target levels of capability. HSPD-8 further directs that DHS, in coordination with other appropriate Federal departments and agencies, establish a “national program and a multi-year planning system to conduct homeland security preparedness-related exercises that reinforces identified training standards, provides for evaluation of readiness, and supports the National Preparedness Goal.” HSEEP provides the program structure, multi-year planning system, tools, and guidance necessary for entities to build and sustain exercise Chapter 1: HSEEP Overview 2 HSEEP Volume I programs that enhance homeland security capabilities and, ultimately, preparedness. For more on HSEEP’s role in the preparedness cycle, see Chapter 4: Capabilities-Based Exercises and Program Management. Exercise Program Management Exercise program management consists of the functions required for an entity (e.g., State, region, county, city, department, agency, private company, or other organization) to sustain a variety of exercises, targeted toward preparedness priorities, on an ongoing basis. It includes project management, multi-year planning, budgeting, grant management, staff hiring, funding allocation, and expenditure tracking. The basis of effective exercise program management is a Multi-Year Training and Exercise Plan. A Training and Exercise Plan Workshop (T&EPW) is usually conducted in order to create a Multi-Year Training and Exercise Plan. During the workshop, participants review priority preparedness capabilities and coordinate exercise and training activities that can improve and validate those capabilities. As a result of the workshop, the Multi-Year Training and Exercise Plan outlines a multi-year schedule and milestones for execution of specific training and exercise activities. Program management functions cyclically. First, a Multi-Year Training and Exercise Plan is developed in consideration of an entity’s preparedness priorities. Next, specific exercise activities are planned and conducted according to the multi-year plan’s schedule. Finally, exercise planners consider post-exercise After Action Reports / Improvement Plans (AARs/IPs) when developing priorities for the next multi-year plan, as well as updating plans and procedures, acquiring new equipment, and conducting additional training. For more on exercise program management, see Chapter 2: Exercise Program Management. Exercise Project Management Exercise project management is a component of exercise program management used to carry out the activities needed to execute an individual exercise. Exercise project management involves five phases, which are collectively known as the exercise cycle. Exercises conducted in accordance with the phases of the exercise cycle lead to tangible preparedness improvements. The five phases of the exercise cycle are as follows: 1. Foundation: The following activities must be accomplished to provide the foundation for an effective exercise: create a base of support (i.e., establish buy-in from the appropriate entities and/or senior officials); develop a project management timeline and establish milestones; identify an exercise planning team; and schedule planning conferences. 2. Design and Development: Building on the exercise foundation, the design and development process focuses on identifying objectives, designing the scenario, creating documentation, coordinating logistics, planning exercise conduct, and selecting an evaluation and improvement methodology. 3. Conduct: After the design and development steps are complete, the exercise takes place. Exercise conduct steps include setup, briefings, facilitation/control/evaluation, and wrap-up activities. 4. Evaluation: The evaluation phase for all exercises includes a formal exercise evaluation, an integrated analysis, and an AAR/IP that identifies strengths and areas for improvement in an entity’s preparedness, as observed during the exercise. Recommendations related to areas for Chapter 1: HSEEP Overview 3 HSEEP Volume I improvement are identified to help develop corrective actions to be tracked throughout the improvement planning phase. 5. Improvement Planning: During improvement planning, the corrective actions identified in the evaluation phase are assigned, with due dates, to responsible parties; tracked to implementation; and then validated during subsequent exercises. For more on exercise project management, see Chapter 3: Exercise Project Management Overview. The HSEEP Blended Approach In addition to providing a standardized policy, guidance, methodology, and language for exercise program and project management, HSEEP facilitates the creation of self-sustaining exercise programs by providing resources such as policy and guidance (i.e., HSEEP Volumes); training (i.e., HSEEP Mobile Course and online courses); technology (i.e., HSEEP Toolkit); and direct support (i.e., vendor assistance with planning and conducting exercises). HSEEP policy and guidance for exercises is based on established best practices. By employing a blended approach that also includes training, technology, and direct support, HSEEP ensures that entities at all levels of government have the tools they need to successfully implement its policy and guidance. Chapter 1: HSEEP Overview 4 HSEEP Volume I Chapter 2: Exercise Program Management This chapter describes important concepts and best practices in exercise program management. Detailed guidance and further descriptions of any exercise planning, conduct, and evaluation concepts addressed in this chapter are contained in Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program (HSEEP) Volume II: Exercise Planning and Conduct and HSEEP Volume III: Exercise Evaluation and Improvement Planning. Effective program management involves a collaborative approach that integrates the different resources of various agencies, organizations, and individuals from both the public and private sectors. Exercise program management is directed toward achieving the objectives established during the multi-year planning process, as described in an entity’s Multi-Year Training and Exercise Plan. In the context of multi-year planning, this chapter provides guidance on engaging program stakeholders, managing program resources, and assigning areas of responsibility for exercise program management. Specific exercise program requirements for State, local, and tribal governments using U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) funds to support exercises can be found in the Homeland Security Grant Program Guidance. Multi-Year Planning As mentioned in Chapter 1, the foundational document guiding a successful exercise program is a Multi-Year Training and Exercise Plan. The Multi-Year Training and Exercise Plan identifies an entity’s priorities as articulated in the entity’s strategy, and identifies the capabilities that are most relevant to achieving those priorities. It then outlines a multi-year schedule of training and exercises that an entity will undertake to enhance and validate its capabilities. It also graphically illustrates a multi-year schedule for training and exercise activities that support those priorities. A multi-year plan employs a building-block approach in which training and exercise activities focus on specific capabilities in a cycle of escalating complexity. See Figure 2-1 for a depiction of the buildingblock approach. For more on how a Multi-Year Training and Exercise Plan can be aligned with other activities to support an entity’s preparedness priorities, see Chapter 4: Capabilities-Based Exercises and Program Management. Chapter 2: Exercise Program Management 5 HSEEP Volume I Figure 2-1: Improvement planning in the preparedness cycle Training and Exercise Plan Workshop An annual Training and Exercise Plan Workshop (T&EPW) provides an opportunity to develop, review, or update an entity’s Multi-Year Training and Exercise Plan. The T&EPW also provides a forum for determining how an entity will execute its multi-year plan in a given year. The purpose of the T&EPW and the Multi-Year Training and Exercise Plan is to translate strategic goals and priorities into specific training and exercise activities, and to coordinate and de-conflict all training and exercise activities on a schedule. An effective exercise program uses a combination of exercise types to effectively accomplish exercisespecific objectives and program goals. Although each exercise type can be executed as a single activity, multi-year plans gradually build capabilities by employing a building-block approach of linked training and exercise activities that escalate in complexity, as illustrated in Figure 2-1. Because exercises are part of a broader preparedness cycle that also involves planning, equipment purchases, and training activities, multi-year plans should not schedule exercises without taking into consideration other issues—exercise scheduling should complement the full range of preparedness efforts and priorities being undertaken by a given entity. T&EPWs include representatives from the entire spectrum of an exercise program’s stakeholders, such as law enforcement, public health and medical community, and emergency management. Participants must be knowledgeable and have the authority to commit personnel and resources toward the activities scheduled in the multi-year plan. Entities conducting exercises may receive funds from a number of different Federal, State, local, or private sector programs, and many of these programs have associated exercise requirements. Some programs, such as the Chemical Stockpile Emergency Preparedness Program (CSEPP) and Radiological Emergency Preparedness (REP) program are mandated by public law, various U.S. Army regulations, and/or Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) regulations affecting exercise conduct and reporting. Faced with various exercise requirements, organizations (e.g., law enforcement, health departments, Emergency Operations Centers [EOCs], citizen groups, transit agencies, power plants) with limited resources are encouraged to use T&EPWs to coordinate schedules at the State, regional, and local levels. A coordinated and integrated exercise program will eliminate duplicative efforts and therefore reduce the burden of conducting numerous exercises. Expanded regional collaboration is identified in the National Preparedness Goal as a national priority. Exercise program managers should strive to include neighboring jurisdictions (e.g., counties, States, cities) in their T&EPWs in order to facilitate the execution of multi-function, multi-disciplinary exercises that involve cooperation among a region’s various jurisdictions. Corrective Action Program After execution of an exercise, an evaluation team produces an After Action Report / Improvement Plan (AAR/IP), which defines specific corrective actions that must be taken to remedy issues observed during exercise evaluation. An AAR/IP assigns all corrective actions to a responsible person or organization, and includes incremental benchmarks and deadlines for completion. An exercise program manager should track progress on all resulting corrective actions identified in the AAR/IP, and should release periodic reports that document progress toward all corrective actions and highlight corrective actions that are incomplete or behind schedule. Such reports help communicate the concrete preparedness benefits generated by exercise activity, while also providing accountability for corrective action implementation. Engaging Program Stakeholders Chapter 2: Exercise Program Management 6 HSEEP Volume I Broad participation from all stakeholders is important for ensuring that training and exercises meet a wide range of preparedness needs. Broad stakeholder participation also helps ensure that exercises will be more realistic, encompassing the full spectrum of response disciplines. Identifying Exercise Stakeholders Exercise program managers should identify as wide a range of stakeholders as possible, and seek to create a database cataloging stakeholder points of contact (POCs). This database lists each POC’s contact information, areas of expertise, and prior exercise experience. When identifying stakeholders, exercise program managers should consider individuals and organizations who would be involved in an actual incident or event, including: • individuals with administrative responsibility relevant to exercise conduct (e.g., Federal, State, local, and tribal agency and private sector procurement officers); • representatives from all first responder disciplines to be included in exercises; • representatives from volunteer or non-governmental organizations, such as Citizen Corps Councils and the American Red Cross; • representatives from important private sector entities; and • Federal, State, local, tribal, private, and non-government officials who impact or are affected by exercise activities. Once a comprehensive set of stakeholders has been identified, exercise program managers can help to integrate them into the exercise program by having them annually participate in the T&EPW, as previoulsy discussed. If program managers are attempting to build a new exercise program, they can begin by hosting an exercise working group involving representatives from all stakeholder entities. Stakeholders should be trained in HSEEP guidance and policy so that they can take advantage of the benefits of HSEEP’s standardized methodology and terminology. Communicating with Exercise Stakeholders In order to engage stakeholders and secure their buy-in for exercise activities, exercise program managers should develop a stakeholder communications plan. This plan contains clearly defined communications objectives (e.g., to coordinate exercise efforts, to solicit feedback) and details timeframes and methods for regular communication. An entity’s Federal and/or State reporting obligations can also be addressed as part of an effective communications plan. Resource Management An effective exercise program must efficiently utilize available financial, personnel, and non-monetary resources. Exercise Budget Management Effective budget management is essential to the success of an exercise program, and it is important for exercise managers to maintain awareness of their available resources and expected expenditures. Preliminary budgets should be developed in advance of funding allocations on the basis of worst-case scenarios, using previous-year budgets to help create estimates. Budgets should reflect an exercise program’s priorities as captured in the Multi-Year Training and Exercise Plan, and should be maintained in order to meet reporting requirements of Federal and State agencies, as well as other grant providers. Program managers with budgetary responsibility should work with procurement officers, accountants, Chapter 2: Exercise Program Management 7 HSEEP Volume I auditors, and grant administrators to identify financial management requirements. At the very least, a program budget should track: • POCs responsible for managing funds; • amounts of funding awards; • sources of funding awards; • allowable funding expenditures; • conditions or restrictions on expenditures; and • expenditures and draw down against the funding source (i.e., procurement). Exercise programs should define monitoring and reporting requirements that meet all relevant legal and grant-related standards. Program Staffing Staffing needs are determined largely by the activities mandated in the Multi-Year Training and Exercise Plan. Program managers identify the administrative and operational staff needed to implement the exercise program, including appropriate personnel to monitor grant expenditures. They assess their current staff availability, including full-time and detailed staff, part-time staff, and contractual support. Program managers also identify gaps between staffing availability and staffing needs, and communicate these gaps through the appropriate chain of command to program administrators to determine if funding is available for staffing. For cases in which direct funding cannot be procured, program managers should consider alternative means of procuring staff, such as using Federal and State grants, detailing stakeholder personnel, and adding volunteers or interns. Program managers must consider whether or not security clearances are required for program staff. Non-Monetary Resources Exercise program managers should identify non-monetary resources and promising practices that can support exercises. Such resources include equipment (e.g., smoke machines); exercise training courses (e.g., Emergency Management Institute [EMI]); guidance (e.g., HSEEP); materials from previous exercises; mutual aid agreements (MAAs); technical assistance; and information technology (e.g., HSEEP Toolkit). A number of organizations—such as the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), National Governors’ Association (NGA), and Lessons Learned Information Sharing (LLIS.gov)—may be able to communicate promising practices that will facilitate exercise activities. When appropriate, information about these resources should be distributed to exercise stakeholders. Exercise Phases Multi-year planning, stakeholder engagement, and resource management are essential ongoing processes that provide the basis for the planning, conduct, and evaluation of individual exercises. The success of individual exercises relies on the execution of five distinct phases, which are collectively known as the exercise cycle: foundation, design and development, conduct, evaluation, and improvement planning. Exercise foundation, design and development, conduct, evaluation, and improvement planning are all discussed in detail in Chapter 3: Exercise Project Management Overview. For the purpose of exercise program management, it is Chapter 2: Exercise Program Management HSEEP Volume I important to assign clear roles and responsibilities for each of these phases, and establish mechanisms of monitoring and reporting to ensure that the steps are carried out in accordance with the priorities and schedule of the exercising entity’s Multi-Year Training and Exercise Plan. Exercise Types The HSEEP methodology is defined and implemented using seven exercise types, as shown in Table 2-1. The type of exercise that best meets an entity’s requirements is identified through analysis of the capabilities the entity is attempting to validate; the training and exercises it has already conducted; and the resources available for exercise planning, conduct, and evaluation. A detailed exercise planning process has been defined for each type of exercise and can be found in HSEEP Volume II. Chapter 2: Exercise Program Management 9 HSEEP Volume I Table 2-1: Properties of the seven HSEEP exercise types Exercise program managers should take advantage of the full range of exercise types, consistent with the building-block approach, when scheduling exercise activities in their entity’s multi-year plan. Discussion-Based Exercises Discussion-based exercises are normally used as a starting point in the building-block approach of escalating exercise complexity. Discussion-based exercises include seminars, workshops, tabletop exercises (TTXs), and games. These types of exercises typically highlight existing plans, policies, interagency/inter-jurisdictional agreements, and procedures. Discussion-based exercises are valuable tools for familiarizing agencies and personnel with current or expected capabilities of an entity. Discussionbased exercises typically focus on strategic, policy-oriented issues. Facilitators and/or presenters usually lead the discussion, keeping participants on track toward meeting exercise objectives. Seminars Seminars are informal discussions, unconstrained by real-time portrayal of events and led by a presenter. They are generally employed to orient participants to, or provide an overview of, authorities, strategies, plans, policies, procedures, protocols, response resources, and/or concepts and ideas. Seminars provide a good starting point for entities that are developing or making major changes to their plans and procedures. Workshops After seminars, workshops represent the second tier of exercises in the HSEEP building-block approach. They differ from seminars in two important respects: participant interaction is increased, and the focus is on achieving or building a product (such as a draft plan or policy). Workshops are often employed in conjunction with exercise development to determine objectives, develop scenarios, and define evaluation criteria. A workshop may also be used to produce new standard operating procedures (SOPs), emergency operations plans (EOPs), MAAs, multi-year plans, or improvement plans. To be effective, workshops must be highly focused on a specific issue, and the desired outcome or goal must be clearly defined. Tabletop Exercises TTXs involve key personnel discussing hypothetical scenarios in an informal setting. This type of exercise can be used to assess plans, policies, and procedures or to assess the systems needed to guide the prevention of, response to, and recovery from a defined incident. TTXs typically are aimed at facilitating understanding of concepts, identifying strengths and shortfalls, and achieving changes in the approach to a particular situation. Participants are encouraged to discuss issues in depth and develop decisions through slow-paced problem solving, rather than the rapid, spontaneous decision making that occurs under actual or simulated emergency conditions. The effectiveness of a TTX is derived from the energetic involvement of participants and their assessment of recommended revisions to current policies, procedures, and plans. TTX methods are divided into two categories: basic and advanced. In a basic TTX, the situation established by the scenario materials remains constant. It describes an event or emergency incident (i.e., scenario) and brings discussion participants up to the simulated present time. Players apply their knowledge and skills to a list of problems presented by the leader/moderator; problems are discussed as a group; and the leader generally agrees on and summarizes the resolutions. In an advanced TTX, play revolves around delivery of pre-scripted messages to players that alter the original scenario. The exercise controller (or moderator) usually introduces problems one at a time in the form of a written message, simulated telephone call, videotape, or other means. Participants discuss the issues raised by the simulated problem, applying appropriate plans and procedures. Chapter 2: Exercise Program Management 10 HSEEP Volume I TTXs are effective for evaluating group problem solving, personnel contingencies, group message interpretation, information sharing, interagency coordination, and achievement of specific objectives. Games A game is a simulation of operations that often involves two or more teams and uses rules, data, and procedures to depict an actual or assumed real-life situation. The goal of a game is to explore decisionmaking processes and the consequences of those decisions. A game does not require use of actual resources, and the sequence of events affects, and is in turn affected by, decisions made by players. With the evolving complexity and sophistication of current simulations, opportunities to provide enhanced realism for game participants have increased. Computer-generated scenarios and simulations can provide a more realistic and time-sensitive method of introducing situations for analysis. Planner decisions can be input into realistic models to show the effects of decisions made during a game. Internetbased, multi-player games offer many additional benefits, such as saving money by reducing travel time, offering more frequent training opportunities, and taking less time away from primary functions. They also provide a collaborative environment that reflects realistic occurrences. Operations-Based Exercises Operations-based exercises represent the next level of the exercise cycle. They are used to validate the plans, policies, agreements, and procedures solidified in discussion-based exercises. Operations-based exercises include drills, functional exercises (FEs), and full-scale exercises (FSEs). They can clarify roles and responsibilities, identify gaps in resources needed to implement plans and procedures, and improve individual and team performance. Operations-based exercises are characterized by actual reaction to simulated intelligence; response to emergency conditions; mobilization of apparatus, resources, and/or networks; and commitment of personnel, usually over an extended period of time. Drills A drill is a coordinated, supervised activity usually employed to validate a single, specific operation or function in a single agency or organizational entity. Drills are commonly used to provide training on new equipment, develop or validate new policies or procedures, or practice and maintain current skills. Typical attributes of drills include: • a narrow focus, measured against established standards; • immediate feedback; • a realistic environment; and • performance in isolation. Functional Exercises An FE is designed to validate and evaluate individual capabilities, multiple functions, activities within a function, or interdependent groups of functions. Events are projected through an exercise scenario with event updates that drive activity at the management level. An FE simulates the reality of operations in a functional area by presenting complex and realistic problems that require rapid and effective responses by trained personnel in a highly stressful, time-constrained environment. Response- and recovery-focused FEs generally concentrate on exercising the plans, policies, procedures, and staffs of the direction and control branches of Incident Command (IC), Unified Command (UC), and/or multi-agency coordination centers (e.g., EOCs). Movement of personnel and equipment is simulated. Chapter 2: Exercise Program Management 11 HSEEP Volume I Prevention-focused FEs usually concentrate on exercising the plans, policies, procedures, agreements, networks, and staffs of fusion centers or law enforcement agencies with counterterrorism missions. Adversary actions are largely simulated and delivered in the form of shared intelligence; however, some of these actions may be carried out by simulated adversaries, or Red Teams, in a separate but coordinated category of exercise play. See HSEEP Volume V: Prevention Exercises for more information on prevention-focused exercises. Full-Scale Exercises The FSE is the most complex type of exercise. FSEs are multi-agency, multi-jurisdictional, multiorganizational exercises that validate many facets of preparedness. They focus on implementing and analyzing the plans, policies, procedures, and cooperative agreements developed in discussion-based exercises and honed in previous, smaller, operations-based exercises. In FSEs, the reality of operations in multiple functional areas presents complex and realistic problems that require critical thinking, rapid problem solving, and effective responses by trained personnel. During FSEs, events are projected through a scripted exercise scenario with built-in flexibility to allow updates to drive activity. FSEs are conducted in real time, creating a stressful, time-constrained environment that closely mirrors real events. The level of support needed to conduct an FSE is greater than that needed during other types of exercises. Response-focused FSEs include many first responders operating under the principles of the National Incident Management System (NIMS) to effectively and efficiently respond to an incident. Personnel and resources are mobilized and deployed to the scene where they conduct their activities as if a real incident had occurred (with minor exceptions). An FSE also may include functional play from participants not located at the exercise incident response site, such as multi-agency coordination centers (MACCs), EOCs, or hospitals. Chapter 2: Exercise Program Management 12 HSEEP Volume I Chapter 3: Exercise Project Management Overview This chapter provides a brief overview of the process of planning, conducting, and evaluating exercises. Detailed guidance and further descriptions of many of the exercise concepts and materials addressed in this section are contained in Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program (HSEEP) Volume II: Exercise Planning and Conduct and HSEEP Volume III: Exercise Evaluation and Improvement Planning. Examples of the referenced materials are contained in HSEEP Volume IV: Sample Exercise Documents and Formats. Successfully conducting an exercise involves considerable coordination among participating agencies and officials. The HSEEP methodology divides individual exercises into five overarching phases: foundation, design and development, conduct, evaluation, and improvement planning. Phase 1: Foundation Establishing a foundation for a successful exercise involves the following steps: developing an exercise planning timeline with milestones, selecting participants for an exercise planning team, and scheduling planning conferences. Project management skills are essential during the foundation phase of the exercise process. Exercise Planning Timelines Exercise planning timelines establish target timeframes for attaining significant, exercise-related milestones, such as planning conferences, training, exercise conduct, after-action reporting, and improvement planning. These timelines should be consistent with the scheduling component of the entity’s Multi-Year Training and Exercise Plan. Timelines will vary based on exercise scope and complexity. For example, exercise planners generally employ longer timelines for tabletop exercises (TTXs) than for workshops and seminars, and even longer timelines for complex or multi-jurisdictional full-scale exercises (FSEs). Timelines also may vary based on the entity’s experience in conducting exercises, available resources, and exercise planning team size. Examples of exercise planning timelines containing milestones are available in Appendix C: Exercise Planning Timelines and in HSEEP Volume IV. Exercise Planning Team The exercise planning team is responsible for the successful execution of all aspects of an exercise, including exercise planning, conduct, and evaluation. The planning team determines exercise objectives; tailors the scenario to the entity’s needs; and develops documents used in exercise simulation, control, and evaluation. While each exercise has its own planning team, personnel may carry over from one exercise to the next, and entities may find it advantageous to include team members with previous exercise planning experience. The exercise planning team should seek to incorporate representatives from each major participating entity, but should be kept to a manageable size. The membership of an exercise planning team can be modified to fit the type or scope of an exercise. For example, an FSE may require more logistical coordination—and therefore more operational personnel on the planning team—than a discussion-based exercise. An exercise planning team leader manages the exercise planning team. The team can most effectively be structured using Incident Command System (ICS) principles, as stated in the National Incident Management System (NIMS). The team’s project management principles should reflect NIMS, with Chapter 3: Exercise Program Management Overview 13 HSEEP Volume I clearly defined roles and responsibilities and a manageable span of control. Figure 3-1 depicts this type of exercise planning team organization. Planning team members also help develop and distribute pre-exercise materials and conduct exercise briefings and training sessions. Due to this high level of involvement, planning team members are ideal selections for facilitator, controller, and/or evaluator positions during the exercise. However, the advanced scenario and events knowledge gained by exercise planning team members renders them ineligible to participate in the exercise as players. Planning team members are therefore asked to be “trusted agents” who should not release scenario-related information to players prior to an exercise. Figure 3-1: Depiction of an ICS-based exercise planning team Exercise Planning Conferences Table 3-1 provides an overview of the types of planning conferences—in typical chronological order— that have been found to be the most useful in the next phase in the exercise cycle, exercise design and development. Exercise scope, type, and complexity determine the number of meetings necessary to successfully carry out the planning process. See Appendix C: Exercise Planning Timelines for more detailed guidance on exercise planning timelines. Chapter 3: Exercise Program Management Overview 14 HSEEP Volume I Table 3-1: Exercise Planning Conferences Phase 2: Design and Development The design and development process builds on exercise foundation and focuses on identifying objectives, designing the scenario, creating documentation, coordinating logistics, planning exercise conduct, and selecting a focus for evaluation and improvement planning. Each of these elements is discussed in more Chapter 3: Exercise Program Management Overview 15 HSEEP Volume I detail in HSEEP Volume II and HSEEP Volume III. Templates for all documents can be found in HSEEP Volume IV. Capabilities, Tasks, and Objectives Exercise capabilities, tasks, and objectives are the cornerstone of design and development. The exercise planning team must consider all of the capabilities being evaluated. Each capability has specific tasks associated with it that should be performed and validated during the exercise. These capabilities and tasks, derived from the Target Capabilities List (TCL) and Universal Task List (UTL), should be used to formulate exercise objectives that reflect the exercising entity’s specific needs, environment, plans, and procedures. Exercise Evaluation Guides (EEGs), described in further under Documentation, contain these capabilities and critical tasks, which can be used to build objectives specific to the exercising entity. Well-defined objectives provide a framework for scenario development, guide individual organizations’ objective development, inform exercise evaluation criteria, and synchronize various agencies’ efforts towards common goals to prevent duplication of effort and focus support on exercise priorities. The validation of capabilities is often accomplished by exercising and evaluating the agency plans or procedures that relate to the performance of the identified capabilities and tasks. HSEEP advocates the use of objectives that are simple, measurable, achievable, realistic, and task-oriented (SMART). Exercise planners should limit the number of exercise objectives to enable timely execution and to facilitate design of a realistic scenario. Scenario A scenario provides the storyline that drives an exercise. The first step in designing a scenario is determining the type of threat/hazard (e.g., chemical, explosive, cyber, natural disaster) to be used in an exercise. The hazards selected for an exercise should realistically stress the resources an entity is attempting to improve through its exercise program. The scenario should also be a realistic representation of potential threats and hazards faced by the exercising entity. The next step in designing a scenario is to determine the venue (i.e., facility or site) in which exercise play will take place. Venue selection should reflect the hazard selected, allowing for realistic, exercise-based simulation of the hazard. Documentation The list below briefly describes the important document types associated with most exercises. The types of documentation described here are discussed in more detail in HSEEP Volume II. ƒ A Situation Manual (SitMan) is a participant handbook for discussion-based exercises, particularly TTXs. It provides background information on exercise scope, schedule, and objectives. It also presents the scenario narrative that will drive participant discussions during the exercise. ƒ An Exercise Plan (ExPlan), typically used for operations-based exercises, provides an exercise synopsis and is published and distributed to players and observers prior to the start of the exercise. The ExPlan addresses exercise objectives and scope, and assigns roles and responsibilities that must be carried out for successful exercise execution. The ExPlan does not contain detailed scenario information, such as the hazard to be employed. ƒ A Controller and Evaluator (C/E) Handbook supplements the ExPlan, containing more detailed information about the exercise scenario and describing exercise controllers’ and evaluators’ roles and responsibilities. Because the C/E Handbook contains information on the scenario and exercise administration, it is distributed only to those individuals specifically Chapter 3: Exercise Program Management Overview 16 HSEEP Volume I designated as controllers or evaluators. ƒ A Master Scenario Events List (MSEL) is a chronological timeline of expected actions and scripted events (i.e., injects) to be inserted into exercise play by controllers in order to generate or prompt player activity. It ensures necessary events happen so that all exercise objectives are met. ƒ A Player Handout is a 1–2 page document, usually handed out the morning of an operationsbased exercise, that provides a quick reference for exercise players on safety procedures, logistical considerations, exercise schedule, and other essential information. ƒ EEGs help evaluators collect and interpret relevant exercise observations. EEGs provide evaluators with information on what tasks they should expect to see accomplished or discussed during an exercise, space to record observations, and questions to address after the exercise as a first step in the analysis process and development of the After Action Report / Improvement Plan (AAR/IP). In order to assist entities in exercise evaluation, standardized EEGs have been created that reflect capabilities-based planning tools, such as the TCL and UTL. EEGs are not report cards—rather, they are intended to guide an evaluator’s observations so that the evaluator focuses on capabilities and tasks relevant to exercise objectives to support development of the AAR/IP. ƒ Exercise policies are implemented to prevent or, at a minimum, mitigate the impact of an action that may cause bodily harm to participants, destruction of property, or embarrassment to the entity conducting the exercise. Logistics Logistical details are important (but often overlooked) aspects of an exercise. They can make the difference between a smooth, seamless exercise and one that is confusing and ineffective. Discussionbased exercises require attention to logistical details, such as the availability of appropriately sized and comfortable meeting and briefing rooms, food and refreshments, audiovisual equipment, facilitation and note-taking supplies, badges and table tents, registration assistance, and direction signs. Operations-based exercises require badge/role identification, access to restrooms, food and water, on-site communications, arrangement of videotaping, props, site security, adherence to the weapons check policy, and observation of safety precautions. Phase 3: Exercise Conduct After design and development activities are complete, the exercise takes place. Prominent steps in exercise conduct include setup; briefings; management of facilitators, controllers, evaluators, players, and actors; and wrap-up activities. Setup The exercise planning team should visit the exercise site at least 1 day prior to the event to set up the site. On the day of the exercise, planning team members should arrive several hours before the scheduled start to handle any remaining logistical or administrative items pertaining to setup and to arrange for registration. For a discussion-based exercise, room layout is particularly important. When setting up an operationsbased exercise, planners must consider the assembly area, response route, response operations area, parking, registration, observer/media accommodations, and a possible Simulation Cell (SimCell) facility. Restrooms and water must be available to all participants, observers, and actors. All individuals permitted at the exercise site must wear some form of identification. Perimeter security and site safety during setup and conduct are essential. Chapter 3: Exercise Program Management Overview 17 HSEEP Volume I Presentations/Briefings Presentations and briefings are important tools for delivering necessary exercise-related information to participants. A discussion-based exercise generally includes a multimedia presentation to present the scenario and accompany the SitMan. An operations-based exercise may include briefings for controllers/evaluators, actors, players, and observers/media. Briefings and presentations are opportune times to distribute exercise documentation, provide necessary instructions and administrative information, and answer any outstanding questions. Personnel In both discussion-based and operations-based exercises, facilitators and controllers guide exercise play. During a discussion-based exercise, the facilitator is responsible for ensuring that participant discussions remain focused on the exercise objectives and making sure all issues and objectives are explored as thoroughly as possible within the available time. In an operations-based exercise, controllers plan and manage exercise play, set up and operate the exercise incident site, give key data to players, and may prompt or initiate certain player actions. All controllers are accountable to one senior controller. Evaluators are selected from participating entities to evaluate and comment on designated functional areas of the exercise. Evaluators are chosen based on their expertise in the functional areas they evaluate. Evaluators have a passive role in the exercise and should only record the actions/decisions of players; they should not interfere with exercise flow. Evaluators use EEGs to record observations and notes. Players have an active role in responding to an incident by either discussing (in a discussion-based exercise) or performing (in an operations-based exercise) their regular roles and responsibilities. Actors are volunteers who simulate specific roles, such as disaster casualty victims, in order to add realism to an exercise. Simulators, generally controllers, perform the roles of individuals, agencies, or organizations that are not actually participating in the exercise in order to drive realistic exercise play. Phase 4: Evaluation Evaluation is the cornerstone of exercises; it documents strengths and areas for improvement in an entity’s preparedness. The analytical outputs of the evaluation phase feed improvement planning activities. Evaluation takes place using pre-developed EEGs, such as the standardized EEGs provided in HSEEP Volume III. The evaluation process for all exercises includes a formal exercise evaluation, integrated analysis, and drafting of an AAR/IP. Hot Wash and Debrief Both hot washes (for exercise players) and debriefs (for facilitators, or controllers and evaluators) follow discussion- and operations-based exercises. A hot wash is conducted in each functional area by that functional area’s controller or evaluator immediately following an exercise, and it allows players the opportunity to provide immediate feedback. A hot wash enables controllers and evaluators to capture events while they remain fresh in players’ minds in order to ascertain players’ level of satisfaction with the exercise and identify any issues, concerns, or proposed improvements. The information gathered during a hot wash can be used during the AAR/IP Chapter 3: Exercise Program Management Overview 18 HSEEP Volume I process, and exercise-specific suggestions can be used to improve future exercises. Hot washes also provide opportunities to distribute Participant Feedback Forms, which solicit suggestions and constructive criticism geared toward enhancing future exercises. A debrief is a more formal forum for planners, facilitators, controllers, and evaluators to review and provide feedback on the exercise. It may be held immediately after or within a few days following the exercise. The exercise planning team leader facilitates discussion and allows each person an opportunity to provide an overview of the functional area observed. Discussions are recorded, and identified strengths and areas for improvement are analyzed for inclusion in the AAR/IP. After Action Report / Improvement Plan An AAR/IP is used to provide feedback to participating entities on their performance during the exercise. The AAR/IP summarizes exercise events and analyzes performance of the tasks identified as important during the planning process. It also evaluates achievement of the selected exercise objectives and demonstration of the overall capabilities being validated. The IP portion of the AAR/IP includes corrective actions for improvement, along with timelines for their implementation and assignment to responsible parties. To prepare the AAR/IP, exercise evaluators analyze data collected from the hot wash, debrief, Participant Feedback Forms, EEGs, and other sources (e.g., plans, procedures) and compare actual results with the intended outcome. The level of detail in an AAR/IP is based on the exercise type and scope. AAR/IP conclusions are discussed and validated at an After Action Conference that occurs within several weeks after the exercise is conducted. Phase 5: Improvement Planning During improvement planning, corrective actions from the AAR/IP—such as additional training, planning, and/or equipment acquisition—are assigned, with due dates, to responsible parties. They are then tracked to completion, ensuring that exercises result in tangible benefits to preparedness. Improvement Plan The IP portion of an AAR/IP converts lessons learned from the exercise into concrete, measurable steps that result in improved response capabilities. It specifically details the actions that the participating entity will take to address each recommendation presented in the draft AAR/IP, who or what agency will be responsible for taking the action, and the timeline for completion. Improvement Tracking and Planning Once recommendations, corrective actions, responsibilities, and due dates are clearly identified in the IP, the exercising entity ensures that each corrective action is tracked to completion. Exercising entities review all exercise evaluation feedback and resulting IPs to assess progress on enhancing preparedness. This analysis and information is incorporated into the capabilities-based planning process because it may identify needs for additional equipment, training, exercises, coordination, plans, and/or procedures that can be validated through future exercises. Continual IP tracking and implementation should be part of a corrective action program within each participating entity. A corrective action program ensures IPs are living, breathing documents that are continually monitored and implemented, and that they are part of the larger cycle of improving preparedness. Chapter 3: Exercise Program Management Overview 19 HSEEP Volume I Chapter 4: Capabilities-Based Exercises and Program Management To meet the requirements of Homeland Security Presidential Directive 8 (HSPD-8), the Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program (HSEEP) has adopted a capabilities-based approach to exercise program management, foundation, design, development, conduct, evaluation, and improvement planning. Capabilities-based planning is defined as planning, under uncertainty, to build capabilities suitable for a wide range of threats and hazards while working within an economic framework that necessitates prioritization and choice. Capabilities-based planning addresses uncertainty by analyzing a wide range of realistic scenarios to identify required capabilities, and is the basis for guidance such as the National Preparedness Goal, Target Capabilities List (TCL), and Universal Task List (UTL). Capabilities-based planning should be incorporated throughout the cycle of preparedness, to include plans, training, equipment, as well as exercises. Capabilities-Based Exercise Program Management Entities should use a wide range of scenarios to exercise their capabilities to prevent, protect against, respond to, and recover from incidents involving varying threats, hazards, or sets of conditions. Capabilities-based planning provides the foundation for developing exercise program objectives, identifying sets of capabilities to exercise, and determining the conditions and scenarios that should be included and addressed in exercises. Rather than continually trying to predict the next threat or hazard that an entity may face, a capabilities-based approach to exercising allows exercise program managers and planners to focus on the capabilities (e.g., evacuation, mass care) that are inherent to a variety of scenarios (e.g., hurricanes, improvised nuclear devices). Several tools are available to support the capabilities-based planning process and assist in aligning preparedness activities, including exercises, under the National Preparedness Goal. This chapter discusses these tools and provides guidance on how exercise program managers and planners can use capabilitiesbased planning to optimize their exercises. Background HSPD-8 required the creation of a National Preparedness Goal. On March 31, 2005, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) issued the Interim National Preparedness Goal. It enables the Nation to answer the following three fundamental questions: • How prepared do we need to be? • How prepared are we? • How do we prioritize efforts to close the gap? In order to answer the first question, DHS developed the TCL, which identifies the capabilities the Nation needs to prepare for, prevent, respond to, and recover from incidents of national significance, including terrorism or natural disasters. The TCL is designed to assist entities in understanding what their preparedness roles and responsibilities are during a major incident. While the TCL describes the capabilities the Nation must build, the UTL, a companion document, describes the specific tasks that might be performed during an incident. The TCL also specifically enumerates critical tasks, which have been derived from the UTL and are defined as tasks that “must be performed during a major event to prevent (re)occurrence, reduce loss of life or serious injuries, or Chapter 4: Capabilities-Based Exercises and Program Management 20 HSEEP Volume I mitigate significant property damage, or are essential to the success of a homeland security mission.” The UTL describes what tasks need to be performed. Federal, State, local, and tribal entities and the private sector reserve the flexibility to determine who performs the tasks and how to perform them. No single entity is expected to perform all of the tasks; therefore, tasks are chosen based on entities’ specific roles, missions, and functions. Entities at all levels of government use the UTL as a reference to help them plan, organize, equip, train, exercise, and evaluate personnel and organizations for the tasks they may need to perform before, during, and after major incidents. Both the UTL and TCL are considered “living” documents that will continue to be refined over time. This chapter provides guidance on how to manage an exercise program in accordance with the principles of capabilities-based planning. It also provides examples of how capabilities-based planning can help the design, conduct, and evaluation of specific exercises. Many of these concepts are further defined or described in Chapter 3: Exercise Program Management Overview, and in HSEEP Volumes II and III. Capabilities-Based Planning Tools in Exercise Program Management The creation of capabilities-based exercise programs begins with a Multi-Year Training and Exercise Plan. The Multi-Year Training and Exercise Plan identifies an entity’s priorities as articulated in the entity’s strategy, and identifies the capabilities that are most relevant to achieving those priorities. It then outlines a multi-year schedule of training and exercise activities that an entity will undertake to enhance and validate its capabilities (See Figure 4-1). Table 4-1: National multi-year training and exercise schedule A Multi-Year Training and Exercise Plan is developed in the context of a broader cycle of preparedness, which also includes equipment purchases; staffing decisions; and the development of plans, policies, and procedures. Training and exercise programs are most effective when the entire cycle of preparedness is aligned toward the development of specific capabilities. For example, if a region conducted several exercises in a given year, and found that the most prominent recommendation from exercise After Action Reports / Improvement Plans (AARs/IPs) was to improve interoperable communications for responding agencies, then that region would focus its preparedness cycle activities on capabilities directly related to interoperable communications. It would begin by updating its communications standard operating procedures (SOPs) and purchasing new equipment to enhance interoperability. Next, the region would conduct a Training and Exercise Plan Workshop Chapter 4: Capabilities-Based Exercises and Program Management 21 HSEEP Volume I (T&EPW), and from that workshop, develop a Multi-Year Training and Exercise Plan to target training and exercise activities toward strengthening and validating capabilities relevant to interoperable communications. The key steps in creating a Multi-Year Training and Exercise Plan are as follows: 1. Identify preparedness priorities. Such priorities are derived from National Preparedness Goal priorities, previous AAR/IPs, an entity’s risk and vulnerability assessments, and/or existing capabilities that need to be validated. In the example, the region would identify interoperable communications as a priority by referencing previous AARs/IPs, as well as the National Preparedness Goal’s National Preparedness Priorities, which include “Strengthen Interoperable Communications Capabilities.” 2. Identify capabilities relevant to priorities. An entity selects capabilities for which to train and validate through the use of exercises. Entities use the TCL to identify capabilities relevant to their priorities, and they select a range of priorities for which they can realistically train and exercise. In the example, the region would select the TCL’s Interoperable Communications Capability for improvement through training, then validate it through exercises. 3. Schedule training and exercises that enhance and validate identified capabilities. Entities employ a building-block approach, depicted in Figure 2-1, for training courses and exercises, with training and exercise activities gradually increasing in difficulty and complexity. Training courses are scheduled strategically to prepare responders for scheduled exercises. In the example, the region would begin its Multi-Year Training and Exercise Plan schedule with training activities focusing on interoperable communications or multi-agency coordination, such as National Incident Management System (NIMS) training courses. Training would be followed by a series of exercises, of increasing complexity, focused on validating the plans, equipment, and training relevant to interoperable communications capabilities. The scenario employed for the exercises would be based on the region’s threat/vulnerability analysis as well as a scenario best suited to validate the interoperable communications capability. The sequence for the Multi-Year Training and Exercise Plan could be to: - begin with a seminar to review and discuss the revised communications SOPs; - continue with tabletop exercises (TTXs) in which representatives from various response disciplines discuss the communications challenges posed by a potential improvised explosive device (IED) incident, and validate their planned response procedures; - continue with multiple functional exercises (FEs) focused on interoperable communications among different jurisdictions and agencies at various stages of response to an IED incident; and - culminate in a full-scale exercise (FSE) that validates the effectiveness of existing communications plans and resources throughout all phases of IED response and recovery. For more information about the different types of exercises and/or the Multi-Year Training and Exercise Plan, see Chapter 3: Exercise Program Management Overview. Planning, Conducting, and Evaluating Capabilities-Based Exercises Once a Multi-Year Training and Exercise Plan is developed, it is executed and implemented in accordance with the schedule. Successfully executing each exercise activity scheduled in an entity’s Chapter 4: Capabilities-Based Exercises and Program Management 22 HSEEP Volume I multi-year plan relies on completion of an exercise cycle consisting of the five phases described in Chapter 1 (foundation, design and development, conduct, evaluation, and improvement planning). The requirements for each phase of the exercise cycle are described in detail in Chapter 3: Exercise Project Management Overview. The sections that follow discuss how to incorporate capabilities-based planning into each of the five phases. Foundation The foundation of individual exercises is a group of planning activities that ensures success. These planning activities consist of: • establishing a base of support from the appropriate entities, and/or senior officials; • forming an exercise planning team; • scheduling planning conferences; and • creating a detailed project management timeline. These activities should be undertaken with an awareness of the targeted evaluation and improvement capabilities. For a detailed discussion of these foundational activities, see HSEEP Volume II. Design and Development The capabilities identified in an entity's Multi-Year Training and Exercise Plan are the starting point for exercise design and development. Exercises are designed to measure and validate performance of these capabilities. Creating exercise objectives that reflect an entity’s capabilities, and the critical tasks associated with those capabilities, is crucial to successful exercise design, development, and evaluation. The Exercise Evaluation Guides (EEGs), described in further detail below, are derived from the TCL and UTL to provide a baseline for exercise evaluation. Once capabilities, activities, and tasks are identified, exercise objectives can be designed based on the entity’s particular plans, policies, and procedures. Exercise objectives should be simple, measurable, achievable, realistic, and task-oriented (SMART). In the example, for the Joint Interoperable Communications FSE, the region might select the following tasks from the Interoperable Communications EEG: implement response communications interoperability plans and protocols; establish an Incident Command Post (ICP) in a location that is safe and appropriate to facilitate communications; and designate a communications unit leader (COML), as appropriate, and announce to all relevant personnel who will carry out COML responsibilities. Based on these tasks, the region may design the following objective based on a participating jurisdiction’s SOPs and emergency operations plans (EOPs): Examine the ability of Jones County Emergency Medical Service (EMS) to communicate directly with the Jones County Emergency Operations Center (EOC) using the 800-megahertz (MHz) system. Chapter 4: Capabilities-Based Exercises and Program Management 23 HSEEP Volume I Figure 4-1: Referencing capabilities and tasks to create exercise objectives and scenarios The National Planning Scenarios, which were developed by a Federal Interagency working group and contain 15 scenarios illustrating a current range of threats and hazards the Nation faces, can provide a useful tool in exercise scenario design. However, while exercise planners may use the National Planning Scenarios as a reference or model for their exercise’s scenario, exercising entities are not expected to replicate the National Planning Scenarios in their exercises. The National Planning Scenarios were used as a tool to derive the TCL and UTL. Now that the TCL and UTL exist, planners should develop scenarios capable of validating their capabilities, tasks, and objectives, while providing a vehicle for exercise play that realistically reflects the hazards and threats their jurisdictions or organizations face (i.e., risk/vulnerability analysis). The design and development phase of the exercise cycle also includes creating documentation, performing logistical planning, and selecting EEGs that match the capabilities, tasks, and objectives that will be validated during the exercise. Conduct Exercise conduct validates the performance of objectives based on capabilities and tasks through effective execution of the scenario as well as pre-developed and ad-hoc injects. If used, injects are designed to stress the level of capability that already exists, without overwhelming participants. Evaluation Exercises should be performance-based and require demonstration, practical application, and evaluation of proficiency in the discrete, essential tasks that enable a mission to be successfully accomplished. Discussion-based exercises—seminars, workshops, TTXs, and games—provide forums for reviewing the adequacy of plans, policies, functions, and interagency/inter-jurisdictional agreements. During these exercises, evaluators observe discussions to assess the adequacy of and familiarity participants have with plans, resources, and relationships. Operations-based exercises—drills, FEs, and FSEs—are designed to validate personnel training and equipment performance in meeting critical tasks, capability outcomes, and missions. During these exercises, evaluators observe and assess actual performance in preventing or responding to a simulated disaster. Exercises are evaluated against the relevant activities and tasks that are linked to each capability in the TCL. This can be done through the use of EEGs, which are mapped to the TCL and UTL. Entities may prepare briefings to familiarize evaluators with personnel, resources, and technical issues pertaining to the performance of priority capabilities and associated critical tasks, while providing a clear framework for critical task performance evaluation. Evaluators are then strategically positioned to observe and record successes or shortcomings in performance of priority capabilities and critical tasks. Exercises are immediately followed by a hot wash (for players) and/or debrief (for controllers, moderators, and evaluators), during which issues and observations arising from the exercise are discussed. Chapter 4: Capabilities-Based Exercises and Program Management 24 HSEEP Volume I During these events, moderators or discussion leaders center discussions largely on the capabilities and critical tasks on which the exercise is focused. Issues and observations recorded during the exercise, as well as those recorded during post-exercise discussions, are captured in an AAR/IP. Once the AAR/IP is drafted, exercise planners may schedule an After Action Conference to specifically address AAR recommendations in the IP. Overall, the AAR/IP focuses on results in meeting TCL activities for priority capabilities and critical tasks. Continuing with the example of the regional Joint Interoperable Communications FSE, an evaluator assigned to evaluate ICP operations might observe and record the following critical tasks being performed: implement response communications interoperability plans and protocols; establish an ICP in a location that is safe and appropriate to facilitate communications; and designate a COML, as appropriate, and announce to all relevant personnel who will carry out COML responsibilities. These observations, when coupled with those of other evaluators and information gathered during the hot wash and debrief, might then result in the determination that the region had fully demonstrated the Interoperable Communications capability that was the focus of the exercise. Figure 4-2: Improvement planning in the preparedness cycle Chapter 4: Capabilities-Based Exercises and Program Management 25 HSEEP Volume I Improvement Planning Once recommendations have been documented in the AAR/IP and discussed at the After Action Conference, it is necessary to identify corrective actions for improvement and to pursue their implementation by assigning responsibility and due dates. Once corrective actions are finalized, program managers prioritize, track, and analyze them as part of a continuous Corrective Action Program (CAP). The corrective actions identified in the previous year’s exercise IPs should be reflected in the following year’s Multi-Year Training and Exercise Plan and schedule. Once completed, these corrective actions should be implemented and validated through subsequent exercises or real-world events through the CAP, which drives the exercise program management cycle. This concept is illustrated in Figure 4-3. Following the regional example described earlier in this chapter, if a post-exercise evaluation concluded that the region’s emergency response personnel needed to create standardized terminology for evacuation procedures, then the region’s next Multi-Year Training and Exercise Plan would address this issue by scheduling of drills or exercises designed to test whether or not a standard terminology had been introduced and successfully incorporated into SOPs and EOPs. By tying all phases of an exercise—from foundation to improvement planning—to the TCL and other capabilities-based planning guidance, exercise managers can ensure that their exercise activities effectively practice, evaluate, and improve the preparedness capabilities that are identified as priorities at Federal, State, local, and tribal levels and within the private sector. Chapter 4: Capabilities-Based Exercises and Program Management 26 HSEEP Volume I Appendix A: Exercise Programs and Resources Department of Homeland Security The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) provides a range of assistance to assist entities with implementing effective exercises. Types of DHS assistance are described in this section. Grant Funds States receive an annual allocation of grant funds from DHS and may use a portion of the funds to enhance their State and local prevention and response capabilities through terrorism exercises. These grant funds, which must be used in accordance with the State Homeland Security Strategy, are described in more detail in the Homeland Security Grant Program application for the most recent fiscal year, available at http://www.dhs.gov. Grant funds can be combined with funds from other agencies to support a single exercise or set of exercises. Exercise Training Independent Study The Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA’s) Emergency Management Institute (EMI) is working to incorporate Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program (HSEEP) guidance and methodology into a variety of its existing exercise training courses. Periodic EMI newsletters describe course content and availability. Additional information is available at http://training.fema.gov/EMIWeb. HSEEP Mobile Course This scalable, modular course walks students through the full spectrum of exercise program management, foundation, design, development, conduct, evaluation, and improvement planning. It is intended for use by exercise program managers, planners, controllers, evaluators, and elected officials at the Federal, State, and local level. The course is 3 days in length with a class size of approximately 50 students. Throughout the course, students are grouped into teams and complete 17 activities that apply the knowledge learned in the modules. It also covers new initiatives and updated policy including the HSEEP Toolkit, Target Capabilities List (TCL), and Universal Task List (UTL). Master Exercise Practitioner Program The EMI Master Exercise Practitioner Program (MEPP) is a performance-based curriculum focusing on the competencies required to plan, develop, design, conduct, and evaluate jurisdiction-specific exercises. The Resident MEPP consists of three resident courses and eight proficiency demonstration activities, and the Nonresident MEPP requires students to complete several independent study courses and several additional courses administered by the appropriate State Emergency Management Agency. A Nonresident MEPP candidate may complete the training and proficiency demonstration requirements by enrolling in the exercise practicum, a unique self-directed and self-negotiated series of 11 proficiency demonstrations. The MEPP candidate is challenged to apply the knowledge, skills, and abilities acquired through participation in Comprehensive Exercise Curriculum courses to emergency management exercises. Additional information is available at http://training.fema.gov/EMIWeb. Appendix A: Exercise Programs and Resources A-1 HSEEP Volume I State-Provided Exercise Training Many States offer exercise design, conduct, evaluation, and program management courses through Staterun training centers or in conjunction with Federal agencies. For example, the California Office of Emergency Services’ Readiness Program includes several exercise-related training courses for members of the California homeland security community. New Jersey and New York engage responders in and provide credit for participation in the FEMA Professional Development Series and Advanced Professional Series, each of which involve exercise design and management courses. Numerous States, such as Florida, provide regular HSEEP evaluation methodology training for exercise planners statewide. Technical Assistance DHS provides technical assistance (TA) to help jurisdictions and organizations resolve problems and/or create innovative approaches to preparedness. TA is available to conduct workshops; address the findings of After Action Reports / Improvement Plans (AARs/IPs); prepare entities to conduct prevention exercises; guide the use of capabilities-based planning tools; and assist with other program-focused activities. Technology HSEEP Website All HSEEP reference manuals and materials are available through the HSEEP website (http://hseep.dhs.gov), which contains links to all of the HSEEP volumes, as well as other HSEEP-related initiatives (i.e., HSEEP Toolkit, HSEEP training, and other exercise resources) HSEEP Toolkit The HSEEP Toolkit is an interactive, online tool for exercise scheduling, design, development, conduct, evaluation, and improvement planning. The HSEEP Toolkit can be accessed from the HSEEP website, and includes the following sub-component systems: • The National Exercise Schedule (NEXS) System is the Nation’s online comprehensive tool that facilitates scheduling, de-confliction, and synchronization of all national-level, Federal, State, and local exercises. • The Design and Development System (DDS) is a project management tool and comprehensive tutorial for the design, development, conduct, and evaluation of exercises. The DDS provides users with the appropriate templates and guidance for developing timelines, planning teams, and exercise documentation (e.g., Situation Manuals [SitMans], Exercise Plans [ExPlans]). • The Corrective Action Program (CAP) System is a web-based application that enables Federal, State, and local officials to identify, prioritize, track, and analyze the recommendations and IPs developed from exercises and real-world incidents. Features of the CAP System include IP creation and maintenance, corrective action assignment and tracking, and reporting and analysis. The CAP System is the technological backbone for the improvement planning process described in HSEEP Volume III: Exercise Evaluation and Improvement Planning. Lessons Learned Information Sharing Exercises and the resultant AARs/IPs not only provide lessons for exercise participants, they also offer a valuable source of information that can be analyzed at the national level to identify lessons learned and best practices that can be shared to enhance preparedness nationwide. Lessons learned encompass knowledge and experience (positive and negative) derived from observations and historical study of actual operations, training, and exercises. Best practices encompass peer-validated techniques, Appendix A: Exercise Programs and Resources A-2 HSEEP Volume I procedures, and solutions that work and are solidly grounded in actual operation, training, and exercise experience. Exercise AARs should identify lessons learned and highlight exemplary practices, and they may be submitted for inclusion in the Lessons Learned Information Sharing (LLIS) database, located at http://www.llis.gov, which serves as a national network for generating, validating, and disseminating lessons learned and best practices. LLIS is designed to help emergency responders, homeland security officials, and healthcare professionals learn from each other and share information. LLIS offers access to a wide variety of original best practices and lessons learned, developed in consultation with frontline emergency responders and validated by emergency response and homeland security professionals. In addition to providing original best practices and lessons learned, the system also serves as a clearinghouse for preparedness documents, exercises, events, and news. Direct Exercise Support DHS has engaged multiple contractors with significant experience in designing, conducting, and evaluating exercises to provide support to State, local, and tribal entities in accordance with State Homeland Security Strategies and HSEEP. Contract support is available to help States develop a MultiYear Training and Exercise Plan and build or enhance the capacity of State, local, and tribal entities to design, develop, conduct, and evaluate effective exercises while simultaneously aligning the exercises with NEXS. Exercises conducted using direct support can help State, local, and tribal governments and their Federal interagency counterparts build self-sustaining exercise programs, demonstrate compliance with HSEEP, and provide best practices for future exercises. Chemical Stockpile Emergency Preparedness Program The Chemical Stockpile Emergency Preparedness Program (CSEPP) is a partnership between DHS’s Office of the Chemical and Nuclear Preparedness and Protection Division (CNPPD) and the U.S. Army that aims to assist communities surrounding the seven U.S. chemical stockpile sites to enhance their abilities to respond to a chemical agent emergency. CSEPP is a federally mandated program and is governed by Public Laws (P.L.) 99-145, 104-201, and 105-262; various Army Regulations; and memoranda of understanding (MOUs) between DHS/FEMA and the U.S. Army. The U.S. Army provides funding through DHS/CNPPD to the participating States and counties via negotiated Cooperative Agreements (CAs). CSEPP exercises focus on partnerships among Federal, State, tribal, and local entities involved in the program. The States administer CSEPP. CSEPP communities have been recognized...
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Running head: LESSONS LEARNED

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Lesson Learned
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LESSONS LEARNED

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Lessons Learned

The assigned reading is titled Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program and
was published by the Department of Homeland Security in 2007. The reading helps to create
awareness about the role of Homeland Security and the roles that it plays to ensure that the
country is safe and secure from any impeding attacks from terrorists and other unscrupulous
individuals. There are several lessons that I learned from the reading that expanded my
knowledge about the Department of Homeland Security. The first lesson is the purpose of the
Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program. Before the program was devel...


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