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The Importance Of After Action Reports


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How after action reports improve future outcomes and your bottom line.

The Importance Of After Action Reports

  1. 1. The basic value ofAfter Action Reports<br />Steve Finney, Jr.<br />© 2009 Steve Finney, Jr. – All rights reserved.<br />
  2. 2. Presentation objectives<br />Understand value and importance of the basic concept of an After Action Report.<br />Recognize situations appropriate for After Action Reports.<br />Identify the structure/elements of an After Action Report.<br />2<br />
  3. 3. What is an After Action Report?<br />After Action Report (AAR): retrospective analysis on critical actions previously undertaken. <br />Evaluates performance<br />Documents effectiveness and efficiency of response<br />Analyzes critical procedures/policies<br />Recommends improvements<br />3<br />
  4. 4. AAR goals<br />Identify strengths and areas for improvement <br />Propose measures to counteract problematic areas <br />Obtain and document “lessons learned”<br />4<br />
  5. 5. Who benefits from an AAR?<br />Policy makers<br />Administrators<br />Organization officials<br />Practitioners/responders<br />Other partners<br />Clients/customers<br />The community<br />We All Do!<br />5<br />
  6. 6. What’s the value?<br />Broad understanding of event(s)/action(s)<br />Enhances future operational planning<br />Assists policy development/revision<br />Protects resources in the future<br />Improves overall future response<br />Information sharing <br />6<br />
  7. 7. When to use an AAR...<br />VIP Meetings<br />Public Works<br />Conferences<br />New Strategies<br />New<br />Deployments<br />Sporting Events<br />Special Projects<br />Natural Events<br />Any<br />small/large simple/complex project/event/incident<br />Training<br />New Apps<br />Seminars<br />Legal<br />7<br />© 2009 Steve Finney, Jr. – All rights reserved.<br />
  8. 8. AAR formats are simple<br />One page or several pages<br />Simple written narrative form (memo)<br />Internal organizational AAR format<br />Formal HSEEP (Homeland Security Exercise Evaluation Program) standardized or modified format<br />8<br />
  9. 9. Structure of an AAR <br />Situation overview(description/timeline) <br />Goals/objectives of critical actions<br />Analysis of action outcomes<br />Performance analysis of critical tasks (strengths/weaknesses) <br />Summary of situation (lessons learned)<br />Recommendations for improvement<br />9<br />
  10. 10. Critical considerations<br />Objectivity: actual responses/outcomes<br />Effectiveness of policies and procedures<br />Areas of strength to maintain<br />Candid areas for improvement<br />Recommendations for improvement<br />10<br />
  11. 11. Other elements of an AAR<br />Obtain feedback. May be through debrief/hotwash (formal or informal)<br />If you use acronyms, create glossary <br />Circulate AAR draft to participants<br />Publish final After Action Report<br />11<br />
  12. 12. Simply stated<br />Prevent<br />Prepare<br />Respond<br />Recover<br />AARs provide a formal opportunity to better prevent, prepare, respond and recover from events/projects/incidents<br />12<br />
  13. 13. Additional resources<br />Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program, Volume III: Exercise Evaluation and Improvement Planning, Rev. Feb. 2007. <br />A Leader’s Guide to After Action Reviews, Department of the Army, TC 25-20, 1993.<br />Federal Emergency Management Agency- <br />Lessons Learned Information Sharing- <br />HSEEP AAR Template- <br />Other keywords: Lessons Learned, Corrective Action Plan, <br /> Improvement Plan, After Action Review<br />13<br />
  14. 14. Review<br />We discussed 1) the basic concept of an AAR, 2) what situations you may use an ARR and 3) what structure and elements to include in an AAR.<br />AARs help us to do better in the future!<br />14<br />
  15. 15. Steve Finney, Jr.<br /><br /><br /><br />© 2009 Steve Finney, Jr. – All rights reserved.<br />