User’s Guide For JOPES

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User’s Guidefor JOPES(Joint Operation Planning and Execution System)1 May 1995

To successfully fight and winwars, war planning must be ourcentral focus. We will develop thebest possible plans using the collective wisdom available among all military planning staffs.As forces are downsized, we must efficiently plan to use the resources entrusted us by the American people.While the new world security environment evolves, diverse threats to ournational interests frequently requirelarge and complex operations. Thelarger and more complex the operation,the more it critically depends on a comprehensive planning system to ensure any measure of success.Future plans must incorporate, to the maximum extent possible, the warfighting employment principles outlined in joint doctrine; Joint Pubs 3-0 and 5-0 (Joint Operations andPlanning for Joint Operations, respectively). In addition, future plans must be prudentand relevant to current and projected threats. Plans must clearly explain how and whyforces are employed, in addition to what forces are to be deployed and when.The products of our planning efforts must be able to stand up to the strongest scrutiny,including the ultimate test--execution.I strongly recommend reading this guide--it encapsulates fundamental JOPES planningprinciples and procedures for both deliberate and crisis action planners.JOHN M. SHALIKASHVILIChairmanof the Joint Chiefs of Staff

Table of ContentsEXECUTIVE SUMMARY . iINTRODUCTION . 1JOPES PUBLICATIONS AND DOCUMENTS . 5THE JOPES PROCESS . 6Campaign Planning . 7Deliberate Planning . 8Crisis Action Planning . 9Deliberate Plans . 10JOPES ADP SUPPORT SYSTEM . 13Time-Phased Force and Deployment Data . 14The Global Command and Control System . 18CONCLUSION. 20GLOSSARY . GL-1


EXECUTIVE SUMMARYJoint warfare is essential to our Nation'scapability to fight and win. The natureof modern warfare demands we planand fight as a team. For joint forces towin in battle they must have a single,unified planning and execution framework capable of translating individualService terminology and operationalpolicies into a commonly understoodlanguage and standard operating procedures.The Joint Operation Planning and Execution System (JOPES) combines individual Service terminology and operating procedures into one standardmultifaceted system. It provides standardization to the joint planning systemused for the execution of complexmulti-Service exercises, campaigns andoperations. JOPES uses a set of command and control techniques and processes, supported by a computerizedinformation system, to ensure the rightamount of timely support gets to thewarfighter to ensure a decisive victory.This primer will explain what JOPESis — and what it is not. It is writtenfor commanders and war planners,new and novice users of JOPES, andthose who have only a peripheral relationship with the system. If understoodand used properly, JOPES becomes acombat multiplier, increasing our efficiency in joint planning and execution.iJOPES is the Chairman of the JointChiefs of Staff’s (Chairman’s) jointplanning system. It covers the planning spectrum from the National Command Authorities (NCA) through theChairman, to the combatant commanders (the CINCs) and the jointtask force commanders. JOPES governs all aspects of conventional jointmilitary operations planning and execution. It is the tool used by all echelonsof planners and operators to speak acommonly understood language.JOPES furnishes joint commandersand war planners at all levels standardized policies, procedures, and formatsto produce and execute a variety ofrequired tasks to include:ú planning — writing operation plans(OPLANs), operation plans in concept format (CONPLANs), functional plans, campaign plans, andoperation orders (OPORDs); andú execution and deployment(time-phased force and deploymentdata [TPFDD]) management —defining requirements for, and gaining visibility of, the movement offorces into the combatant commanders' area of responsibility(AOR).User's Guide forJOPES

JOPES is not simply a computer system. It does include automated dataprocessing (ADP) support for plannersand commanders by providing bothhardware (computers) and software(programs) to facilitate joint operationplanning and execution. JOPES ADPresides in the computer network of theWorld-Wide Military Command andControl System (WWMCCS), scheduled to be replaced in September 1995by the Global Command and ControlSystem (GCCS). The JOPES softwareapplications support a variety of planning and execution functions. Together,the computer hardware and softwaresystems assist the planners to:ú develop detailed deployment requirements,ú estimate logistics and transportationrequirements and assess operationplan transportation feasibility,iiú prioritize, replan, and track deployment status during execution, andú refine deployment requirements andmonitor the deployment.JOPES deliberate and crisis actionplanning is described in detail in JOPESVolumes I and II, and in the Chairmanof the Joint Chiefs of Staff Manual(CJCSM), TPFDD Development andDeployment Execution.JOPES is, in the truest sense of theword, a System. It is not merely a computer! It is not a series of computersoftware programs! It is not just a standardized set of policies, procedures, andformats for conducting planning andexecution! It is the sum of all theseparts! The goal of this primer is to provide the reader a fundamental understanding of this system and the interaction of its parts.User's Guide forJOPES

INTRODUCTIONThe Joint OperationPlanning and ExecutionSystem (JOPES) is theintegrated system usedto plan and execute jointmilitary operations.JOPES is a combination of joint policies and procedures (guidance), and automated data processing(ADP) support used to plan and execute joint military operations. Although JOPES (and its relatedsystems) has been used for over 20 years to support the development of operation plans and timephased force and deployment data (TPFDD), thecurrent automated system was given its first realbaptism of fire in Operation Desert Shield to assistin managing a real world operational deployment.Since then, JOPES ADP has been used in virtuallyevery deployment. Even though its performance isfar from ideal, it has become an integral part of ourability to deploy forces.JOPES is a combinationof joint policies and procedures, supported byautomated data processing (ADP), designed toprovide joint commanders and planners with acapability to plan andconduct joint militaryoperations.This primer provides a general overview of JOPES.Its purpose is to correct the common misconception that JOPES is only an ADP system by explaining in clear and succinct terms what JOPES trulyis. This document is intended to be used as a companion piece to the User's Guide to Joint Operation Planning, dated 11 September 1994. Thatdocument provides a more detailed overview of jointplanning principles.In war, nothing is achieved except by calculation. Everythingthat is not soundly planned in its detail yields no result.The Maxims of Napoleon1

The Joint Operation Planning and Execution SystemJoint Operation PlanningNCAPolicyDecisionscampaign planningDeliberatePlanningJOPESPublications& ActionPlanningJOPESADPSupportO PO RD orC ampaign Pla nJointWarfightingOperationsfigure 1JOPES provides a standardized framework forjoint military planningand execution. Thescope of JOPES is farbroader than is generally understood.2Figure 1 depicts the various parts of JOPES. JOPESis the principal system within the Department ofDefense (DOD) to translate NCA policy decisionsinto the joint combatant commander’s air, land andsea operations. It does this by precisely definingDOD war planning and execution policies, designating specific procedures and formats, and providing ADP support to convert NCA decisions intojoint operation plans. Joint operation plans are theblueprints for joint operations.User's Guide forJOPES

The Joint Planning and Execution Community (JPEC)THE PRESIDENT AND SECDEF (NCA)NCATHE NATIONALSECURITY COUNCIL (NSC)NSCCIASTATE DEPTDODCJCSCOMBAT SUPPORT AGENCIESSUPPORTEDCOMMANDCOMPONENT FORSOFMARFORTHE JOINT PLANNING ANDEXECUTION COMMUNITY (JPEC)SERVICESSUBORDINATE COMMANDSFUNCTIONALUSAUSAFUSNUSMCUSCGLOGISTICS Sfigure 2The players in the joint planning process, as illustrated in figure 2, include the National CommandAuthorities (NCA) and the Joint Planning and Execution Community (JPEC).The National CommandAuthorities (NCA) setnational policy and strategic direction.The President and Secretary of Defense, as theNCA, sit atop the pyramid. They provide the ultimate decision on national policy and overall strategic direction of the U.S. Armed Forces. They aresupported by the executive departments and organizations within the Office of the President, primarily the National Security Council (NSC).The National SecurityCouncil (NSC) Systemsupports the NCA in theexecution of their policydecisions.The NSC is the principal forum to deliberate national security policy issues. The NSC provides theframework to establish national security strategyand policy decisions for implementation by the President in his role as commander-in-chief. The President either issues orders directly to the military toimplement his national security strategy or he mandates military action by using directives. These di-3

rectives can take the form of: the national securitystrategy document, national security directives,presidential directives, or executive orders.The Joint Planning andExecution Community(JPEC) plans and conducts joint operationplans.As depicted in the lower portion of the pyramid,the JPEC consists of those headquarters, commands, and agencies involved in the training, preparation, movement, reception, employment, support,and sustainment of military forces assigned to atheater of operations. The JPEC principals are theChairman and the Joint Staff, who publish the taskassigning documents, review the products, and approve the final version of peacetime plans. Thesupported commands and their subordinates are responsible for developing and executing operationplans and orders. The Services and their logisticsagencies play a key support role by organizing,equipping, training, and maintaining forces for thecombatant commands.JOPES is a system whichincludes:JOPES is a system which translates NCA decisions into combatant commander's joint operations. It includes:publications and documents,ú a set of publications and documents, whichguide the development of OPLANs andOPORDsan operation planningprocess, andú an operation planning process, which develops deliberate plans (OPLANS) and operationorders (OPORD), andan ADP support system.4ú an ADP support system, which provides thedata processing support required for the development of OPLANs and OPORDs.User's Guide forJOPES

JOPES PUBLICATIONS AND DOCUMENTSThere are three primaryJOPES publications:JOPES publications establish the formats and guidance to govern warplan (OPLAN and OPORD)development by joint force commanders:JOPES Volume I,ú Joint Publication 5-03.1, Joint OperationPlanning and Execution System, Volume I,(Planning Policies and Procedures), dated 4August 1993, (to be staffed as CJCSM 3122.01);JOPES Volume II, andú Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Manual(CJCSM) 3122.03 draft, Joint OperationPlanning and Execution System, Volume II,(Planning Formats and Guidance), dated 13October 1994; andCJCSM 3122.02.ú TPFDD Development and Deployment Execution, dated 9 December 1994.JOPES Volume I definesthe process for both deliberate planning andcrisis action planning.Volume I provides the guidance commanders andtheir staffs use to develop and execute joint operations. It provides specific, detailed, and standardized procedures and guidance for:ú conducting deliberate planning,ú writing OPLANs, CONPLANs (with and without TPFDD), and functional plans,ú conducting crisis action planning, andú writing OPORDs.JOPES Volume I also provides specific formatsand checklists used for crisis response by commanders and their staffs during crisis action planning.5

JOPES Volume II provides the administrativeinstructions and formatsfor developing joint operation plans.Volume II is a set of instructions (standardizedprocedures) used by commanders and their staffsto write OPLANs, CONPLANs, and functionalplans.CJCSM 3122.02 provides policies and procedures for deployment execution.CJCSM 3122.02 provides guidance for the execution and management of real world deployments.Joint Operation Planningcam paign plan nin gDelib eratePlanningOP LANCO NPLA Nw/TPF DDC ONP LANw/o TP F DDCrisis ActionP lann in gFu nctionalPlanCam p aignP lanOP OR Dfigure 3THE JOPES PROCESSThree planning categories fall within the scopeof joint operation planning: campaign planning, deliberate planning,and crisis action planning.6Plans are developed under different processes depending on the focus of the specific plan (figure 3).They are campaign, deliberate, and crisis action planning. These processes are interrelated; campaignplanning principles contribute to both deliberate andcrisis action planning.User's Guide forJOPES

Campaign PlanningCampaign planning isthe responsibility of thecombatant commander.Though it is not a structured formal processlike deliberate and crisis action planning, campaign planning principles apply to both.Campaign planning allows CINCs to translate national strategy and objectives into unified plans formilitary action by specifying how operations andlogistics will be used to achieve success within agiven space and time. It embodies the combatantcommander’s strategic vision of the related operations necessary to attain theater strategic objectives.Campaign planninghelps facilitate a transition from deliberate tocrisis action planning.If the scope of contemplated operations requires it,campaign planning begins with deliberate planning.It continues through crisis action planning, thus unifying both planning processes. The degree to whichthe deliberate plan may serve as the core for a campaign plan is dependent on the plan assumptions,commander's intent, and available resources. Campaign planning and its relation to joint operation planning is discussed in detail in Joint Pub 5-0 Doctrinefor Planning Joint Operations, dated 15 August1994.War plans cover every aspect of a war, and weave them all into asingle operation that must have a single, ultimate objective in whichall particular aims are reconciled.Clausewitz, On War7

Deliberate PlanningDeliberate planning involves a structured process using the JOPESfive-phased methodology:The deliberate planning process develops joint operation plans for contingencies identified in jointstrategic planning documents. These planning documents include the Secretary of Defense's annual"Contingency Planning Guidance" (CPG) (whichprovides written policy guidance for contingencyplanning) and the Chairman’s "Joint Strategic Capabilities Plan" (JSCP) (which provides guidanceto the CINCs and Service Chiefs for accomplishing military tasks and missions based on currentmilitary capabilities). Deliberate planning is completed in five phases based on JOPES guidance.i. Initiation,ú Phase I, initiation, specifies strategic objectivesand planning assumptions, specifies the type ofplan for each task, and apportions major combat and strategic forces to the CINCs for planning. This information is provided to the CINCsin the JSCP.ii. Conceptment,develop-iii. Plan development,8ú In response to the JSCP assigned task, theCINCs, during Phase II, concept development, conduct mission analysis, identify friendlyand enemy centers of gravity, determine thecommander's overall intent for the operation anddevelop the staff estimates. The final result ofPhase II is a CINC's strategic concept, whichis submitted to the Chairman, as required, forreview and approval.ú After the CINC's strategic concept is approved,Phase III, plan development, begins with fullplan development and documentation. This process produces force, support, and transportation planning documents to support the CINC'sconcept of operations. This process will be discussed in detail later in this primer, during discussions on TPFDD development.User's Guide forJOPES

iv. Plan review, andú In Phase IV, plan review, the plan is reviewedfor adequacy, feasibility, acceptability, and compliance with joint doctrine. Those plans requiring approval by the Chairman will be reviewedby the Joint Staff, Services, and combat supportagencies (CIO, DIA, DISA, DLA, DMA, andNSA).v. Supporting plans development.ú During Phase V, supporting plans development, emphasis shifts to subordinate and supporting commanders as they complete their plansto augment the CINC's plan.Crisis Action Planning (CAP)Crisis Action Planning(CAP) is conducted forthe actual commitmentof allocated forces,based on an existing situation.Crisis action planning, like deliberate planning, involves a structured process following the guidanceestablished in JOPES publications. This planningprocess results in the time-sensitive developmentof campaign plans and operation orders (OPORDs)for execution.CAP follows a JOPESprescribed six-phaseddevelopment process:i. Situation development,ú Phase I, situation development, is initiated withthe perception or recognition of a crisis and results in the development of the CINC's assessment.ii. Crisis assessment,ú Phase II, crisis assessment, is the NCA andChairman's evaluation of the CINC's assessmentand determination whether a crisis is imminent.ú During Phase III, course of action development, the NCA or the CINC develops one ormore courses of action. The CINC submits thecommander's estimate and recommendation tothe Chairman.iii. Course of action development,9

iv. Course of action selection,ú In Phase IV, course of action selection, theNCA decides on a course of action.v. Execution planning,andú In Phase V, execution planning, the CINCdevelops a campaign plan or OPORD, Execution.ú Phase VI, execution, is the NCA decision toexecute the campaign plan or OPORD.The crisis action planning process results inthe time-sensitive development of joint operationplans (campaign plansand OPORDs) for execution.OPORDs are prepared in prescribed JOPES formats during crisis action planning. They are in theform of a directive issued by a commander to subordinate commanders to effect the coordinated execution of an operation.Deliberate PlansDeliberate plans establish a framework forrapid transition to crisisresponse. There are fourtypes of deliberate plans;OPLANs, CONPLANs,CONPLANswithTPFDDs, and functional plans.Based on the Chairman's JSCP planning requirements, the CINCs prepare four types of deliberateplans; OPLANs, CONPLANs (with and withoutTPFDDs), and functional plans. These plans facilitate the rapid transition to crisis response. Eachplan has different JOPES procedural and formatrequirements. However, all follow the basic format of a five-paragraph order;But in truth, the larger the command, the more time must go intoplanning; the longer it will take to move troops into po

language and standard operating pro-cedures. The Joint Operation Planning and Ex-ecution System (JOPES) combines in-dividual Service terminology and op-erating procedures into one standard multifaceted system. It provides stan-dardization to the joint planning system used for the execution of complex multi-Service exercises, campaigns and .

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