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Tactical Interoperability Communication Scorecards

Firefighter speaking into walkie-talkie.

The tactical interoperable communications scorecard assesses the maturity of tactical interoperable communications capabilities in 75 urban/metropolitan areas. These scorecards were developed by subject matter expert panels that reviewed documentation on current communications plans, exercises, and a self-assessment to arrive at consensus findings and recommendations for each region on how to best improve that region’s communications capabilities.

Uses of Scorecards and Recommendations

The scorecards and the recommendations are being distributed directly to each of the urban/metropolitan areas to focus their regional efforts to improve tactical interoperable communications. The Department of Homeland Security is using these scorecards to focus technical assistance programs and target specific areas of improvement in communications interoperability.

Scorecard Summary

Overall, the scorecard results show that urban/metropolitan areas have come a long way in improving their tactical interoperable communications capabilities. The technology exists to permit interoperable communications, but solutions are often not available regionally and are far from seamless in many areas. Continued training on available technical solutions and procedures for their use is critical to operational success. Even in areas that have demonstrated success at the tactical, command-level of communications interoperability, there is still work to be done. Multi-agency communications have been addressed within many of these jurisdictions, but regionalizing the existing communications strategies to identify longer term interoperability goals across multiple jurisdictions and levels of government still needs to be addressed.

The scorecard evaluation focuses on

  • Usage—The proficiency in the use of communications interoperability equipment and accompanying procedures varies by the types of equipment used and is increasingly complex as additional agencies are included in response efforts. In addition, almost no region had completed a communications-focused exercise before the TICP validation exercise, which meant that the areas had no specific practice using their interoperable communications capabilities.
  • Governance—Areas with mature governance structures have advanced further in implementing shared systems/solutions that facilitate regional communications. Regionalized strategic plans are largely not in place and should be developed for communications interoperability with careful consideration for how investments can be shared across the region.

A more comprehensive analysis of the scorecards will be developed during the second quarter of fiscal year (FY) 2007.

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This page was last reviewed/modified on October 16, 2008.