Defense

October 14, 2016
 

With new how-to-train manual, Army aims to improve readiness

David Vergun
Army News

The Army’s new Field Manual 7-0 is now available on the Army Publishing Directorate website and the Army Training Network.

The Army recently introduced a new version of its premier training manual to help leaders from sergeants to generals improve their unit’s readiness.

“Train to Win in a Complex World” is the title of the new Field Manual 7-0. The digital field manual explains Army training strategies and new initiatives for assessing Army training readiness. What’s more, the manual offers links to online training resources.

Chief of Staff of the Army Gen. Mark A. Milley said the new field manual will help the force achieve his No. 1 priority — readiness.

“Training is the key task to improve our readiness,” he said. “Realistic, hard, rigorous, repetitive training increases combat performance and reduces friendly casualties. Read, understand and use [the manual].”

Col. Steve York is the director of Training Management Directorate, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, the organization that wrote the new Field Manual 7-0.
“The field manual is the primary source for leaders — noncommissioned officers to division commanders — to find the information they need on how to conduct successful training,” York said. “It gives Soldiers the ability to pick up a single-source document that tells them how to plan, prepare, execute and assess training events.”

The field manual details how to plan training events, conduct training meetings, write after-action reports and carry out many other training tasks. Field Manual 7-0 will not be published in book form. Soldiers can read the field manual online or download it from the Army Training Network, where it can be under the What’s Hot section, or the Army Publishing Directorate, where it can be found in the Field Manual section.

Field Manual 7-0 links to Army Training Network’s many resources, including instructional videos, mission-essential task lists, training and evaluation outlines, and best training practices.

“The field manual and online resources will help leaders at every stage of the training process,” York said.

The new Field Manual 7-0 reflects the Army’s transition from preparing units at training centers for a specific mission in Iraq or Afghanistan to training to set standards. The manual will help leaders who have never conducted standards-based training and leaders whose training planning skills have atrophied, York said.

Soldiers of the California Army National Guard and 1st Armored Division conduct joint training at Camp Roberts, Calif., May 2016.

“[Field Manual 7-0] states that the unit commander is at the center of the plan-prepare-execute-assess cycle and much of the training will occur at home station,” he said.

The new field manual also makes training proficiency ratings more specific and more objective. The old proficiency ratings of T (trained), P (needs practice), and U (untrained) have been replaced with T (fully trained), T- (trained), P (practiced), P- (marginally practiced), and U (untrained). The change is designed to give leaders a more accurate picture of their unit’s readiness.

Though it’s new, the field manual returns to time-tested training concepts such as battle-focused training and hip-pocket training.

Battle-focused training meets the commander’s guidance while taking into account limited time and resources. The concept helps leaders understand the responsibility for, and links between, collective mission essential tasks and the individual tasks. The field manual points to online resources to help leaders conduct battle-focused training.

Hip-pocket training usually consists of individual tasks on which the unit can train during inactive periods. Ideally, leaders train these selected tasks in 15 to 30 minutes. The field manual provides examples of hip-pocket training.

By combining the old and new, Field Manual 7-0 shows Army leaders how to conduct training that will help their Soldiers successfully complete their missions.

“The field manual blends long-established training practices with online training resources to meet the Army’s training readiness goals,” York said.

Field Manual 7-0 is available on the Army Publishing Directorate website, https://armypubs.army.mil, and on the Army Training Network at https://atn.army.mil.




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