description icon green arrowIt is important to understand how users and stakeholders will interact with the IS&S Environment and by what means. The vision of how the IS&S Environment will operate must be tied to direct improvements in mission effectiveness. Think of the IS&S Environment as an information highway – the user organizations need a roadmap to identify on ramps, define the rules of the road for managing traffic interactions, and show the off ramps for delivering information.


Desired Outcome: Governance body adopts a written concept of operations on behalf of all stakeholder organizations.

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1. Understand the different points at which users will interact with the IS&S Environment.
2. Put the identified cultural impediments on the table, discuss them, and determine ways to minimize the obstacles to building the IS&S Environment.
3. Identify difficulties and obstacles in the current way users interact with the existing IS&S Environment or data sources, and prioritize these according to user needs.
4. Identify the business requirements for the IS&S Environment.
5. Define the highest priority information exchanges as a starting point for the IS&S Environment – the priorities should be based on meeting the greatest needs as expressed by the users.
6. Document the as-is model of how these exchanges now get handled versus the to-be model of how the IS&S Environment will handle a more productive exchange of information.
7. Identify the privacy and safeguarding constraints that must be met by any ultimate implementation of information sharing.
8. Identify the roles of all the participants in the information exchanges to be clear about who initiates the exchange, who receives the information, and under what conditions the exchange takes place.
9. Develop metrics that will measure how well the IS&S Environment is meeting business and user needs at each step of the service.
10. Develop a change management process.

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1. What are the different ways (both online and offline) that people currently accomplish the task the IS&S Environment will be designed to help do more effectively?
2. Where are user difficulties and obstacles in the current way people accomplish the tasks?
3. What are the business requirements for the IS&S Environment?
4. What kind of exchanges will be supported by the IS&S Environment?
5. How is the exchange of information initiated and received?
6. How do individuals request information?
7. How will the request for information be fulfilled by the IS&S Environment?
8. What services will be involved in producing the information requested?
9. What are the technology considerations?
10. What are the funding constraints?
11. How we are going to manage and address risk?
12. How will privacy be protected and security assured through the information exchange processes?
13. What metrics will best indicate how well the service is working for its users?

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The following resources can help you with this play:


N-DEx: Understanding the National Data Exchange (N-DEx) System, Chief Mark A. Marshall, Smithfield (VA) PD, Vice President, International Association of Chiefs of Police, (


Comprehensive Regional Information System Project Volume 2: Concept of Operations (2007), Noblis (for the National Institute of Justice),


Information Sharing Environment Common Profile Framework Description


NIEM Cost Model User Guide (2012),


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