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Needs Emphasis

4.1 Acquire and Communicate Information

* Subordinate unit reporting. [Command and Control]:

PROBLEM: Reports received in the TOC during battles are often incomplete and late.

RESULT: An unclear picture of the overall situation, which hinders accurate battle tracking and decision making.

Procedure: Units need to adhere to a SALUTE or SALT reporting format; subsequent reports should include battle damage assessment.

* Tactical Operations Centers (TOC) organization. [Command and Control]:

PROBLEM: A "Stovepiping" by the battlestaff. EXAMPLE: S-2s and S-3s do not operate as a single entity. Battlestaffs remain in their respective tracks unless some key event brings them to the S-3 work area. Often the S-2, engineer and FSO are not remoted to the TOC, which hinders battle tracking and information dissemination.

Technique: At a minimum, staffs should have remote communications with the TOC with vehicular radios remoted to the inside of the TOC. To the greatest extent possible, staffs should co-locate during the planning portion of the Tactical Decision Making Process. This will result in better products produced more efficiently.

* Field artillery unit trains elements battle tracking and information management. [Fire Support]:

1. Field artillery unit trains elements do not preconfigure the TOC assets necessary to manage information flow.
2. Too often the information necessary to prepare for battle tracking the fight is not made available to the trains elements, and/or the information is not sought out.

1. Determine communication net requirements, information requirements, and TOC layout configurations prior to deployment.
2. Administration and Logistics Operations Centers (ALOCs) and Base Support Operations Centers (BSOCs) should be configured to support extended operations.
3. Implement a system for tracking each class of supply and include the system in the CSS SOP.
4. The CSS SOP must incorporate procedures for information dissemination and the CSS command and control structure.

* Information flow within the direct support artillery battalion TOC. [Fire Support]:

1. Most artillery battalions have difficulty collecting and disseminating information
2. The volume of information often overwhelms the battlestaff.

Technique: A 3-Step Approach

1. TOC layout to facilitate information flow

- Locating the FDC track to the center of the three tracks has proven successful.
- The operations track stays on the flank to be either the jump TOC, or just to have radios remoted out of it.

2. Procedure for logs and messages

- Message formats: use a 3x5 card. Put a block for each TOC section, the date/time/group (DTG), what was reported, who reported it.
- Other units use the standard message form with carbon paper.

3. Information prioritization

- Have each staff section identify it own Priority Information Requirements (PIR), ie. three pieces of information critical to the current mission.
- Write the PIRs on a 3x5 card.
- Place the 3x5 cards near the radio remotes for use by TOC RTOs.
- When this PIR information comes in, it generates a Priority One message within the TOC.
- Priority One TOC information is written down on the message format, and then immediately given to the appropriate section. The message is also verbally announced to all TOC members.

Exercise the TOC information flow at every possible Home Station training opportunity. Also, for addition techniques and procedures for TOC operations, see CALL Newsletter 95-7, Tactical Operations Center (TOC).

* TOCs command and control of subordinate elements. [Command and Control]:

1. Units often have difficulty gathering, analyzing and disseminating information to subordinate elements.
2. Special staff elements attached to the unit for STABOPS are not routinely incorporated into the Tactical Decision Making Process (TDMP).
3. Civil affairs, combat intelligence and PSYOPs elements work for the unit S-2, rather than the S-3.
4. Information sharing does not routinely occur.
5. TOC configuration does not allow pertinent information to be posted for easy access by those who need it.
6. TOCs do not track procedural requirements imposed by factional elements at different checkpoints, and then disseminate that information to the rest of the unit.
7. TOCs do not track and disseminate results of negotiations conducted throughout the Area of Responsibility.


1. Develop a TOC configuration that works for your unit.

2. Integrate special staff elements into the TDMP; have them work with the unit S-3, in conjunction with the S-2.

3. Develop information dissemination procedures, to include:

- time
- location
- type of information
- to whom via what medium, ie. FRAGOs, etc.

4. Develop standard locations for posting information within TOCs.

5. The requirement to track, analyze and disseminate information exists in STABOPS as it does for conventional combat operations. The type and level of detail of information may be different.

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