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Advisory Organization Solicitation - ad hoc Training Program Review

This General Memorandum is issued to solicit National Urban Search and Rescue (US&R) Response System (the System) members for participation in an Ad Hoc Group (AHG) to perform a review of the System’s training and exercise programs.

Performing a periodic review of the System’s training and exercise programs is essential to ensure the efficiency, effectiveness, and safety of the System.  Regular reviews help identify areas that require improvement, assess operational performance, effectiveness, cost, and enhance overall preparedness. 

The following outlines a few of the areas for this review; a more definitive scope will be outlined in the group’s charter.

  1. Curriculum: Conduct a strategic assessment to evaluate the existing training curriculum to identify potential areas for cost optimization without compromising the quality and effectiveness of the program.  Look for opportunities to streamline content, eliminate redundancies, or leverage existing resources.  Examine and consider potential recommended changes to Position Description training requirements.

  2. Delivery Methods: Assess the cost-effectiveness of different delivery methods.  Consider the expenses associated with instructor-led training (ILT), computer-based training (CBT) materials, equipment, technology requirements, and any potential cost savings using the System’s members, contract support, or blended learning approaches.

  3. Training Locations: Evaluate the cost implications of various training venues.  Consider factors such as rental fees, maintenance expenses, travel-transportation costs, and the availability of facilities that closely resemble real-world scenarios.  Explore partnerships with organizations or agencies that can offer cost-effective training locations or share resources.

  4. Training Exercise Activities: Examine the costs associated with full and or modular based exercises, including personnel, equipment, props, and logistics.  Identify opportunities to optimize resource utilization, explore alternative options for expensive equipment or consumable use, and evaluate the feasibility of joint exercises with other agencies or organizations to share costs.

In each aspect, consideration will be given to conducting a cost-benefit analysis to assess the value gained from potential cost reductions or reallocations, and engaging with other government agency experts or stakeholders who can provide insight into supplemental funding opportunities.  Additionally, exploring more effective options for sharing System curriculum should be considered, as well as training and exercise opportunities, and leading the effort to build a truly national system through all tiers of US&R response operations to include local, regional, and State-based resources.

The goal of this AHG is to perform a comprehensive review of the System’s training and exercise program that incorporates cost evaluations to identify strategies that can optimize resources, enhance cost-efficiency, and ensure the sustainability of the training and exercise programs while maintaining their quality, effectiveness, and expense.

Per Annex A of the 201 - USR Administration Manual Annex A - Advisory Organization (Mar 2023), Section 3-1, E, Ad Hoc Applications.  All potential members should complete an application to be submitted through the provided link: Ad Hoc Application Submission Link by October 23, 2023.  Within seven calendar days after the application closing date, the US&R Branch and/or their appointees will review the applications and determine if the candidates meet the KSAs for the available positions and ensure the applicant has provided all required documentation.

Members will be appointed by the US&R Branch Chief for a term defined by the anticipated duration of the Ad Hoc Group.  Membership terms shall begin on the date specified in the General Memorandum that announced the Ad Hoc Group’s establishment.  The US&R Branch Chief will distribute a General Memorandum naming the Ad Hoc Group members, including the Co-Chairs.

Any questions related to this solicitation process should be directed to the US&R Branch or the Advisory Group Chair, Keith Bevan at:

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