High-Quality Multi-Hazard Emergency Operations Plan (EOP) Toolkit

2.3 Determining Goals and Objectives

Developing clear goals and objectives will help the district clarify problems, issues, and opportunities related to each hazard. Well-developed goals and objectives support the plan and the desired result. Developing effective and achievable goals and objectives ensures that the planning team has a mutually accepted direction in which all participating members can work together to accomplish the appropriate tasks.

Goals are broad, general statements that indicate the intended solution to problems identified by the planning team. Goals state what is to be accomplished. Goals should be developed to identify actions needed for all phases (prevention, preparedness, response, recovery, and mitigation) of emergency management.

Possible goals for flooding (hazard) may include:

  • Before: Prevent buildings from flooding.
  • During: Monitor buildings for situational awareness.
  • After: Inspect buildings for damage.

Goals that are to broad or overreaching are often not completed. Develop SMART goals by breaking them down into objectives.

Establishing SMART goals helps to ensure that the goals developed by the planning team are indeed achievable. The acronym SMART reflects the considerations that must be made for a goal to effectively lead the planning team to a desired outcome.

Possible SMART goals for flooding (hazard) may include:

  • Before: The maintenance department will place sandbags along the exterior of buildings that are known to flood prior to the onset of a rain event to prevent buildings from flooding.
    • - Specific: The maintenance department will place sandbags along the exterior of buildings that are known to flood prior to the onset of a rain event.
    • - Measurable: Where will the sandbags be placed?
    • - Achievable: Can the maintenance department accomplish this task?
    • - Realistic: Do they have the necessary staff, the sandbags, the sand, and the ability to transport the sandbags.
    • - Timely: Did it take place prior to the onset of a rain event?
  • During: The maintenance department will continuously monitor buildings using internal cameras systems (if available) to pre-identify locations that need restoration and devise a plan for when it is safe to access areas.
  • After: The maintenance department will deploy crews to inspect buildings for damage following the rain event and report findings every hour.

Objectives are specific and identify actions taken before, during, and after the incident to achieve the goals. They achieve the goals and determine actions that individuals should accomplish. Multiple objectives may need to be developed to support a goal. Many of the objectives developed will apply to more than one hazard.

Possible objectives for flooding (hazard) may include:

  • Before:
    • - Store sandbags on site at locations prone to flooding.
    • - Provide flood prevention training to administration and staff who can distribute sandbags.
  • During:
    • - Store sandbags on site at locations prone to flooding.
    • - Provide flood prevention training to administration and staff who can distribute sandbags.
  • After:
    • - Safely sweep the building to ensure evacuation of all individuals.
    • - Deploy maintenance crews to safely inspect each facility and district property for damage.

Clearly defining the goals and objectives enables unity of effort and consistency of purpose across a district’s departments and campuses. The goals and objectives should determine the desired outcome before, during, and after the emergency. The outcomes must be realistic, school centric, valid and obtainable. The multi-hazard EOP should reflect the overall missions of:

  • Reducing risk.
  • Protecting lives and property.
  • Sustaining operations.