The U.S. Army Operating Concept

What is it'

The newly published Army Operating Concept (AOC) is a key document in the Army Concept Framework that details how future Army forces will conduct operations as part of the joint force to deter conflict, prevail in war, and succeed in a wide range of contingencies in the future operational environment. It describes the employment of Army forces emphasizing the operational and tactical levels of war. The AOC describes broadly how Army headquarters organize and direct their forces, outlines major categories of Army operations, and identifies capabilities required of future Army forces to guide and prioritize force development.

What has the Army done'

The Army is revising its future concept work, the Army Concept Framework. The first step was the publication of the Army Capstone Concept (ACC) in December 2009. Next was the publication of the AOC on Aug. 19, 2010. The third step will be the publication of the Army functional concepts with proposed publication in September 2010.

Why is the AOC important to the Army'

The AOC outlines two broad responsibilities in the conduct of full-spectrum operations: combined arms maneuver and wide area security. Army forces conduct combined arms maneuver to gain physical, temporal, and psychological advantages over the enemy. They conduct wide are security to consolidate gains and ensure freedom of movement and action. The AOC also describes the role of mission command and co-creation of context in future operations. Mission command details how leaders empower subordinates and enable prompt decisionmaking consistent with the commanderAca,!a,,cs intent. Co-creation of context describes how various echelons and specialties exchange information and collaborate to drive operations. The AOC will guide changes in Army doctrine, organizations, training, materiel, leadership and education, personnel, and facilities. The AOC further serves as a bridge between the ACC and the Army functional concepts, and enhances integration of future Army forces with a wide array of domestic and international partners.

What continued efforts does the Army have planned for the future'

The Army centers of excellence will build on the ACC and the AOC to develop a set of six Army functional concepts which includes: mission command, intelligence, movement and maneuver, fires, sustainment and protection. The AOC will also help drive capability development, encourage further discussion and learning, and help to institutionalize operational adaptability across the force.


TRADOC website

The U.S. Army Operating Concept

Related article: Army Operating Concept provides Capstone follow-up

Army Capability Integration Center website