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Strategic Plan: Comsubpac Operations

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COMSUBPAC Operations: Strategic Plan


University of Phoenix

Executive Summary

The Operations Department of Commander, Submarine Force U.S. Pacific Fleet is an organization that prides itself on the quality of its product, but recognizes that there is room for significant improvement. To ensure that this improvement is aligned with the long-term goals of the organization, a strategic plan is needed which not only focuses improvement efforts but also addresses the challenges facing the organization. These challenges include dramatic increases in operational demands on the Force, a demand for more responsive service, reduced personnel, and opportunities such as increasingly capable but capable external communications architectures.

Given the narrow and specialized nature of the products, services, and customer base of the organization, COMSUBPAC N3 should pursue a "concentrated growth" strategy, focusing on the existing product line and determining how to optimize it for the existing customers. Specifically, the following three objectives should be pursued:

1. Leverage increasing technology to improve responsiveness while maintaining the current quality level.

2. Have a rigorous and effective ongoing training program.

3. Reduce the time necessary to assume Alternate Command Center of other Submarine Operating Authorities.

These objectives are within the capabilities and budget of the organization, and will be realized within the next three years by communicating the strategic vision to the organization, focusing all efforts toward these goals, and tracking progress every six months. In fact, the direct costs will be more than overcome by the savings in personnel costs by using leveraging technology to reduce manning requirements. In summary, this plan will reap operational and fiscal benefits, and should be adopted as soon as possible.

Company Background

The organization chosen for development of a strategic plan is the Operations Department (abbreviated N3) at Commander, Submarine Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet (COMSUBPAC). An overview of the entire command will establish the context in which the Operations Department functions. COMSUBPAC as a command is a “force provider” to the forward-deployed U.S. Navy Fleets that actually conduct operations in support of U.S. Pacific Command objectives. As such, it has the responsibility to train, maintain, and equip all the crews and submarines in the Pacific Theater. In support of this mission, the command has departments that provide personnel, intelligence, operations, supply, logistics, maintenance, plans and policy, communications, and training and readiness.

Operations Department consists of about 30 officers and enlisted personnel, and is led by a senior US Navy Captain. As the name implies, it directs the operations of all submarines (approximately 30) in the US Pacific Fleet. These operations consist of exercises, training periods, and certifications that are designed to prepare the submarines for deployed operations. In addition, COMSUBPAC N3 is an alternate commander for forward deployed submarines, in the event that the primary commander is unable to conduct operations for any reason.

In order to conduct these operations, N3 produces specific products, provides specific services, and executes certain missions for their customers, all of which will be defined before starting the planning process. The products include waterspace assignments, operation orders, safety guidance for exercises, operating policies, and inter-deployment schedules. The services include submarine rescue coordination in the event of an emergency, and a continuously manned operations center. The missions of the Department are summarized as follows:

1. Ensure the safety of submarine operations, to include the prevention of mutual interference between submerged submarines.

2. Manage the Fleet Readiness Training Plan for each submarine to ensure compliance with all required training and certification events.

3. Provide submarine support to fleet exercises.

4. Coordinate submarine rescue operations.

5. Be prepared to take command of all deployed submarines in the event Commander Task Force 74 (CTF-74), the commander of deployed submarines, is unable to conduct operations.

6. Promulgate and execute a coordinated strategic communications plan about the value and contributions of submarine operations to the fleet and national agendas.

The customers that N3 services are as follows:

1. The submarines themselves.

2. CTF-74.

3. Commander, US Pacific Fleet.

4. Commander, Third Fleet.

Vision Statement

At the time of development of this plan, COMSUBPAC N3 has no formal strategic plan, nor any other document that defines a vision statement. Based on the above background information, the proposed vision statement is:

“Mission ready, On time!”

Mission Statement

To expand on the vision statement, and encapsulate the overall mission of the department, the following mission statement was developed:

“COMSUBPAC Operations conducts quality, responsive submarine operations that enable the deployment of mission-ready submarines in support of Fleet and Theater Commander objectives.”

Values Statement

The primary value that the department espouses is quality. Quality is, however, in the eye of the beholder. In order to define the specific aspects of quality that COMSUBPAC N3 values, a value statement is needed. The following value statement is proposed:

“COMSUBPAC N3 delivers quality in operations, which requires that submarines have clear, concise, and balanced direction in a time frame that supports adequate planning and preparation for safe mission execution.”

Environmental Analysis

A critical part of strategic planning is to scan the environment



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