SAFECOM-NCSWIC Offers Life Cycle Planning Tool

Author: Joint SAFECOM- National Council of Statewide Interoperability Coordinators (NCSWIC) Funding and Sustainment Committee

In 2011, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Office of Emergency Communications (OEC) released the Emergency Communications System Life Cycle Planning Guide (the Guide) to better enable practitioners to plan and deploy public safety communications systems. The Guide defines six phases of the system life cycle: planning, acquisition, implementation, maintenance, replacement, and disposition of communications systems. The Guide provides an overview of each phase, including goals and products, stakeholder involvement, roles and responsibilities, and items for consideration. 

The Joint SAFECOM-NCSWIC Funding and Sustainment Committee recently updated the Life Cycle Planning Tool for state and local stakeholders to utilize when planning public safety communications projects and identifying optimal funding sources for each phase of a system life cycle. The Committee added a new phase – Pre-Planning – to advise stakeholders to organize internally and gain consensus on communications needs and potential solutions, before requesting funding for any given project.

The Life Cycle Planning Tool provides a one-page tool stakeholders can use to help plan the project and educate elected officials, funders, and budget personnel. In short, this sample life cycle planning tool provides a good snapshot of the project, project plan, timeline, and funding sources decision-makers can use to better understand communication needs, and justify funding for communications projects.

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