Initiation Triggers

A warning order or operation order received from higher HQ

Written or verbal

Planning guidance issued by a higher commander

A major change in the operational or political situation

The commander's personal assessment of the situation

An unexpected risk or opportunity arises

Initiation Tasks

Conduct initial assessment of the situation and task

Including a concept of the end state

Is there is a pre-existing contingency plan?

Assemble staff planning team and issue instructions to prep for the OPP cycle

Establish liaison with higher, flanking and subordinate HQs to open a two-way flow of information

Consider bringing in collaborative planners to save time

Gather planning tools and data

Identify the threat

Send out recce elements or task other information collection systems

Commander issues initial planning guidance

After review of Higher Wng O


Preliminary Warning Order issued to subordinate HQs

Commander's Initial Planning Guidance

HQ Staff Planning Team assemble

Usually lead by G5 or COS

Brief is 5-10 Mins long

Prepared by Comd/COS

Time allocation

Changes to OPP, if any

Initial information requirements

Recce and movement requirements/limitations

Special tasks

Esp. any that must begin immediately


COS: HQ Battle Rhythm established

And understood by all HQ Staff

Liaoson system activated

Send/recv LO teams to/from higher/lower HQs

Collaborative planners integrated with staff planning team


IPB Initiated

COMD: Initial Planning Guidance to Staff

COMD: Input to Wng O


G5/COS: Preliminary Wng O

With Comd's review/approval

Commander Initiation Considerations

What is my task in relation to the situation, and where does it fit in?

How much time do I have?

What probable key timings must I meet?

What do I need the Staff to produce right now?

What do I need to know about the situation, especially the threat?

Focus is info needed immediately

Staff Initiation Considerations

Plan to the one-third/two-thirds rule

Give your subordinates 2/3 of the time remaining

Notify subordinate HQs as soon as practical

Staff planning team assembles, lead by G5

COS or G5 briefs Battle Rhythm

Including any changes to OPP

G5 ensures all planning team members know their role

Including collaborative planners and LOs

G5 provide applicable Higher Orders/Wng Os


G2 begins IPB

All planning materials are gathered

Electronic and paper maps, imagery, reports, assessments, staff tables, etc.

All planning tools are gathered

Decision Support Template, G5 Master Matrix, Effects Guidance Matrix, calculators for Force Ratios, Personnel Loses, Tactical Manoeuvre, etc.

G5 drafts Wng O for Comd approval

Issued to subordinate HQs after approval

G5/G3 confirm receipt of Wng O

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