Handbook Collection

Managing Exercises Handbook

Image: Kim White

An exercise is a controlled, objective-driven activity used for testing, practising or evaluating processes or capabilities.

Exercises are an essential component of preparedness and should be used to enhance capability and contribute to continuous improvement. An exercise can be as simple as a planning group discussing an emergency plan, or as complex as a major multi-agency event involving several organisations and participants. Regardless of size, exercises are useful to:

  • evaluate plans
  • explore issues
  • evaluate equipment, techniques and processes
  • develop or assess competence
  • demonstrate capability
  • practise interoperability
  • validate training
  • identify gaps
  • promote awareness

Exercising is integral to the development of capability, as well as to the preparation of personnel to carry out their functions during actual events. This handbook is designed to offer a series of checklists and prompts for exercise managers and provides a number of examples to illustrate different aspects of the exercise management process. This handbook provides guidelines and a national reference for the design, planning, conduct and evaluation of exercises.