A JADC2 framework to unite US armed forces

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With its JADC2 (Joint All-Domain Command and Control) initiative, the US Department of Defense wants to set up fully integrated, fast, scalable and secure networks.

The JADC2 brings together communities

Today, most businesses face intense competitive pressure to understand faster, decide faster, and act faster in an increasingly dynamic environment. For companies, this environment is economic. But for the US Department of Defense (DoD), the environment in which it must operate technology and tactics against ruthless adversaries is more like a battlefield. And all but the most arrogant sales managers will admit that the stakes on the battlefield are considerably higher than growing revenue and capturing market share. Which does not mean that they are insignificant!

To achieve its goal of “integrated deterrence”, the US Department of Defense (DoD) relies on a framework called “Joint All-Domain Command and Control” (JADC2). But military jargon aside, this concept of fully integrated, fast, reliable, flexible, scalable, and secure networks is familiar to enterprise IT professionals. To create these integrated networks, the DoD and non-defense companies must rely on edge computing, connected devices, artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning , predictive analytics, enterprise cloud, automation and identity management if they want to succeed in a world of ever-shorter time to decision and action.

Acquire and analyze data

All of these interconnected technologies have one primary purpose: to enable the sharing of information. As Lt. Gen. Dennis Crall, Director of Command, Control, Communications, and Computers (C4), J-6 Joint Chiefs of Staff Cyber ​​and DSI Officer, told a recent Pentagon press briefing. , “it’s all about data”. According to Mr. Crall, the challenge that the Joint All-Domain Command and Control (JADC2) framework attempts to meet is well known to IT professionals: it is to find a balance between the need to secure data “and that of sharing this information quickly”, two constraints which are sometimes “in contradiction with each other”.

Security and speed, sometimes “in contradiction”? The Lieutenant General of the Marine Corps is a champion understatement. Any IT professional can testify that the search for a balance between the need for security and the imperatives of competitiveness in the real time of the digital age is a constant and stressful challenge. It’s the eternal trade-off between productivity and risk, which has intensified during the pandemic as tens of millions of employees suddenly had to work remotely and needed access to network data and resources. with unsecured personal devices.

Gather all the strengths of the company

For CIOs and other IT managers, the Department of Defense’s JADC2 initiative has provided two important lessons. The first is that effective integration of network technologies to improve operational efficiency and achieve competitive goals requires a strategic framework. And this cannot be improvised. Deployment should be tied to organizational goals. The second lesson is that it is imperative to involve and gain buy-in from stakeholders across the enterprise. If you fail to get this membership, you risk wasting money and opportunities, but also ruining your efforts. According to Crall, JADC2 “brings together rather disparate communities within the department and makes them work together for a common cause. And it is necessary, because, as one can imagine, the OSD (Office of the Secretary of Defense), the services, the joint staff, the combatant commands, and still others are all involved in actions.

So, if the JADC2 framework manages to bring the Marines, the Army, the US Air Force and the Navy together, there is no reason for a CIO not to be able to agreement with its chief commercial officer, chief financial officer and chief operating officer on how to lead the digital transformation of the company. The best way to do this is to agree on a common goal. For the military, the common goal is to develop superior combat capabilities at the ranged battlefield level. For the company, the common goal could be to launch a new product line, enter a new market or reduce operating expenses. “Put simply, the JADC2 strategy allows us to organize our actions at the command and control level to sense, make sense and act at the speed of relevance,” Crall said. The “speed of relevance”. All is said.

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