Contemporary Operating Environment

The Launch of the Forces Command Plan 2020-2028

By Chris Field November 26, 2019


Our 100 Day Assessment, and our resulting Forces Command Plan for 2020-2028, was an iterative process conducted by all members of Forces Command that included consultation, collaboration and contribution by our joint partners and stakeholders. Our Plan for 2020-2028 covers the next period of Army modernisation to Army Objective Force (AOF) 2028 and the Australian Defence Force Integrated Investment Plan (IIP).

Our main effort to support Army’s mission achievement is transforming Army’s Training System and our workforce. These two interdependent and mutually supporting efforts adapt, simplify and modernise the capacity of our Force Generation (sustainable teams - ready now) and our Force Modernisation (integrated and scalable land forces - future ready).

It is an exciting time to serve in Forces Command. Together with our joint partners and stakeholders, we are preparing for an operating environment that is experiencing accelerated change. Change is driven by intensifying geopolitics, evolving technology and complex demographics. Our preparation now and for the future considers, in a scalable and sustainable manner, all domains of our operating environment - human, maritime, land, air, cyber, information and space - through the full spectrum of cooperation, competition and conflict.

As a unified force we work as a team, shares our ideas, seek challenges and mitigate risks. Importantly, we continue to find opportunities through a shared vision and purpose.

Forces Command has the mandate and capacity to assure that we can sustain our current ready now culture and posture to our maximum abilities to enable the future Army, in partnership with others, to be ready for accelerating change, and for our people to achieve thier personal, professional and cultural potential.

The Forces Command Plan 2020-2028, is in three Parts:

  • Part 1 – Mission Analysis, Course of Action Development, Analysis and Selection (only accessible via the DPN). Conducted to:
    • Analyse Army’s strategic direction to Forces Command – to understand our role and requirements to support Army’s Contribution to Defence Strategy, enable Army in Motion, master Accelerated Warfare and uphold Good Soldiering.
    • Reflect upon the ten year history of Forces Command – to comprehend our past achievements in order to sustain success and address persistent challenges.
    • Inform our current and future operating framework – by aligning the findings of our analysis and fusing them with our operating framework of force generation, modernisation and the main effort of transformation. This operating framework under-pins and guides the annual Forces Command Operational Order that synchronises our directed tasks and resource plan.
  • Part 2 – Response for 2020-2028 (only accessible via the DPN). Developed to inform our command team of their mission, specified tasks and priorities of effort in response to the findings of Part 1. Each task is assigned to the 2nd Division, Brigades, Training Centres, the Knowledge Centre and Headquarters. These tasks are designed to achieve a specified purpose within the overall effect of unifying Forces Command’s operating framework for the Army Objective Force (AOF) 2028 and the Australian Defence Force Integrated Investment Plan (IIP).
  • Part 3 – Forces Command 2020-2028 (accessible on The Cove). Developed to offer a concise summary of our plan for all audiences and articulates how Forces Command is supporting Army’s Contribution to Defence Strategy, enabling Army in Motion, mastering Accelerated Warfare and upholding Good Soldiering.

What we must do next. We are, as a team, responding to the Forces Command Plan 2020-2028 by assessing responsibilities to identified tasks in order to unify our efforts. The outcomes of the execution of these tasks, including enhancing leadership, standardising Human Performance, upholding Good Soldiering and assuring Land Range Safety, Land Vehicle Safety, and Cyber Worthiness, will be measured for effectiveness over the next eight years as we support the achievement of Army Objective Force (AOF) 2028 and the Australian Defence Force Integrated Investment Plan (IIP).

All my best regards to you and your families for your future service.

Good Soldiering.



Chris Field

Major General Chris Field is Deputy Commanding General, Operations, US Army Central.


The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the position of the Australian Army, the Department of Defence or the Australian Government.

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