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Warfighters' Forums (WfF)

What is it?
The Warfighters' Forums (WfF) initiative is a web-based knowledge network residing on the Army Knowledge Online (AKO) site and was established to enhance training, readiness, leader development and collaboration and information sharing among Brigade Combat Teams (BCT) and functional and multifunctional brigades. The success of the inaugural program, StrykerNet, that supported the stand-up of the Stryker BCT, established a precedent that has already proven to be a catalyst for streamlining interaction and staff processes between the operating and generating forces. The program capitalizes upon the senior mentor roles performed by corps and Center of Excellence (CoE) commanders who integrate the functions of the WfF into refined staff organizations, internal battle rhythms, and routine interactive sessions with subordinate commanders world-wide. The WfF initiative recognizes the imperative to provide a proactive means to promote collaboration, share ideas, and find solutions to common problems across the Army, and to learn, innovate, decide, and act faster than our adversaries while operating in a condition of persistent conflict.

What has the Army done?
The WfF is currently administered at the Army Command (ACOM) level and below. Using capabilities established through the WfF, corps and CoE commanders have established new and dynamic processes for vetting and resolving pertinent issues and lessons learned. The full potential of this new and evolving capability is not yet realized; however, the WfF Working Group, comprised of members of all three ACOMs (TRADOC, FORSCOM, AMC) is entering the third phase of a multi-year implementation plan. The working group has added WfF to the Army Campaign Plan as a special topic with the ultimate aim of establishing WfF as an enduring Army program of record. As the WfF continues to develop, it is recognized that many mature and successful professional discussion forums, and other knowledge networks, already exist throughout the Army and Department of Defense (DoD). In coordination with Headquarters, Department of the Army, WfF must seamlessly integrate capabilities under development with those that already exist in order to form a coherent, interdependent, and mutually supporting Army and DoD-wide knowledge network.

What continued efforts does the Army have planned for the future?
As WfF develops into an Army program, it must be supported with a global Army enterprise systems architecture (both secure and non-secure) and an enterprise resource server forest. This architecture is under development, and efforts are underway to expedite the availability to the WfF Program. In order to support the level of collaboration demanded by the emergent "Web 2.0" environment, deploying and deployed units and leaders must be able to seamlessly "plug into" a secure network anywhere in the world and obtain access to the shared resources of the ACOM WfF.

Why is this important to the Army?
The new level of information sharing being fostered by the WfF initiative is forging an unprecedented nexus between the operating and generating forces of the Army and is fostering new levels of collaboration and information sharing. This capability has the potential to change the way the Army trains and prepares for war. It recognizes and reinforces the way a new generation of Soldiers and leaders think and interact by capitalizing on a key pillar of knowledge management: One [person] learns and everyone knows.

 
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