An Enterprise Decision Framework to Accelerate a Unified Department of Homeland Security

An Enterprise Decision Framework to Accelerate a Unified Department of Homeland Security

An Enterprise Decision Framework to Accelerate a Unified Department of Homeland Security

Globalization, technological advancement, and an increasing culture of interconnectivity place the United States in a more susceptible position to foreign and insider threats. In response to these threats, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Unity Memo works to unite component agency missions and strengthen capabilities across the homeland security enterprise.

Challenges to the DHS Unity Memo include cultural resistance as each agency fights to maintain its own identity and goals. Likewise, a lack of adequate training and resources dedicated to cross-component collaboration could hinder understanding and commitment to the DHS Unity Memo.

 An Enterprise Decision Framework (Figure 1) can accelerate and enhance DHS’s ability to achieve the goals of the Unity Memo and overcome barriers to achieving them.

The five elements of the Enterprise Decision Framework include Culture, Training, Cross-agency Task Force, Detailees, and Stakeholder Engagement. Promotion of a common and clearly defined DHS mission from senior leaders is essential. Training reinforces culture and engages employees in role-based decision-making scenarios that help them prepare for real-life crises.

Cross-agency Task Force advances agency partnerships to promote interagency understanding and foster growth, while having employees detailed (e.g., 6-month details) across components allows employees to work at the unique agencies throughout DHS to attain and share knowledge and skills. Finally, Stakeholder Engagement helps DHS reach out to stakeholders as a unified Department to understand their needs, create common ways of approaching risk, and facilitate faster decision making and action. 

Figure 1 – Enterprise Decision Framework integrates agencies across DHS increase preparedness to combat challenges

Figure 1 – Enterprise Decision Framework integrates agencies across DHS increase preparedness to combat challenges

Together, these five elements foster information sharing which produces knowledge-based decision-making.

While DHS seeks to unify itself on a larger spectrum, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has already adopted an agency-wide survivor-centric mindset to keep the survivor at the center of FEMA’s operational efforts. This approach unites FEMA through a common mission to promote unity and achieve results. It is also a way for FEMA to communicate and collaborate with their stakeholders.

FEMA’s unification on a small scale demonstrates DHS’s capability for successful unity on a large scale using the principles of an Enterprise Decision Framework, strengthening the United States’ preparedness against threats.

Contributors

* Arc Aspicio | Arc Aspicio is an information technology and management consulting company that focuses on homeland security and intelligence. Our services include strategy and planning, business architecture, strategic communications, mission/technology alignment, information technology, and program management. Arc Aspicio is building a community that promotes collaboration, continuous learning, innovation, and intelligence to improve homeland security. For more information, please visit www.arcaspicio.com.

Contact Information
Lynn Ann Casey / Chief Executive Officer
info@arcaspicio.com
703.465.2060

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