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The Dynamic Synchronization Matrix: An Automated Decision Support Tool for the Campaign Planning Staff
ARMY COMMAND AND GENERAL STAFF COLL FORT LEAVENWORTH KS SCHOOL OF ADVANCED MIL ITARY STUDIES
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Synchronization is the ability to focus resources and activities in time and space to produce maximum relative combat power at the decisive point. This is a tenet of US Army doctrine. This monograph reviews the concept of synchronization at the operational level, and provides campaign staffs with a decision support tool in order to improve operational level planning and execution for the employment of joint US military forces. Operational synchronization is more complex than simply massing operational level combat power at the operationally decisive point. Commanders and their staffs must be capable of conceptualizing, or visualizing across multiple forces and functions, and both their actions and effects through space over extended periods of time. This paper proposes an automated technique labeled the Dynamic Synchronization Matrix for synchronizing forces at the operational level. The Dynamic Synchronization Matrix is a simple adaptation of a commercial project management program, run on a personal computer, which improves upon existing capabilities because it combines the two distinct major improvements of PERT methodology and automation. This decision support tool improves upon the two dimensional synchronization matrices that enable modern tactical planning, command and control by making connections between time, space, forces, functions, actions, and effects which the average human would have difficulty making and storing. The net gains in employing the DSM include more disciplined planning, greater flexibility in subsequent planning and execution, multiple display options, greater speed, agility, and accuracy, enhanced situational awareness and information management, insights into ones own plans, and enemy strengths and vulnerabilities, and linkage and applicability to subordinate echelons and other levels of war.
APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE