Ready Forces

Description

Field combat ready forces able to succeed in an unpredictable and complex security environment in the conduct of concurrent operations associated with all mandated missions.

Planning highlights

Our success in achieving the missions assigned by the Government of Canada is directly related to our ability to provide first-class training and capabilities to our Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) members.

Readiness begins with the issuance of the Chief of the Defence Staff (CDS) Directive for CAF Force Posture and Readiness. This is the mechanism by which the CDS directs the CAF to organize, train and equip personnel to be ready to respond to Government of Canada direction and execute concurrent operations as outlined in Strong, Secure, Engaged: Canada’s Defence Policy (SSE).

Force Posture and Readiness direction ensures force elements (individual or collective units or capabilities) are trained in accordance with established readiness levels. Readiness levels will be achieved in accordance with the managed readiness plan through individual training (training individual CAF members), collective training (training teams to work together), validation activities (assessments), equipment servicing and readiness management. Together, this will allow the CAF the flexibility to respond to various mission sets. Mission sets include defence diplomacy, collaborating with other government departments and agencies in support of domestic defence and security, rapid provision of humanitarian assistance and disaster relief, peace support operations and combat operations.

Our managed readiness programs are deliberately organized to ensure the CAF is trained and adequately equipped as a scalable, agile, responsive and interoperable force both domestically with civil authorities and other government departments and internationally with allies and partners.

The CAF Joint Readiness Authority organizes and manages joint exercises and training to advance interoperability. It manages the Joint Managed Readiness Program which ensures the readiness of the CAF to conduct concurrent operations through the participation and execution of specific Canadian and international exercises and training events.

To further test responses, systems and equipment, the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) regularly conducts exercises with a variety of scenarios. These exercises ensure the CAF is able to respond to a variety of threats.

Gender-based analysis plus (GBA+)

The department will continue to work with partners to ensure that Gender Advisors and Gender Focal Points are trained in order to perform their roles while deployed. The CAF will continue to send deploying Gender Advisors and Gender Focal Points to the Nordic Centre for Gender in Military Operations, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) department head for the gender discipline. Internally, the department is continuing to progress towards the development and fielding of a Department of National Defence (DND)/CAF specific course for Gender Focal Points, with a greater emphasis on GBA+. Providing enhanced training in addition to the Women and Gender Equality online GBA+ course will enhance the department’s collective understanding of GBA+, encourage all members to apply it in their daily work and result in policies and programs that are better able to meet the needs of the diverse Defence team population.

Experimentation

In FY 2020-21, DND/CAF will continue experimentation in the development of Joint Ready Forces through three key initiatives: Joint Arctic Experiment 2020, Bold Quest and Responsive Limited eXperiments. The Joint Arctic Experiment 2020 includes equipment trials and capability development initiatives, leveraging joint experience in support of overcoming operational challenges in the Arctic environment. Bold Quest is a Coalition Capability Demonstration and Assessment series, in which nations, services and programs pool their resources, facilitating the interoperability of joint capabilities in their final stages of development. The Responsive Limited eXperiments initiative is designed to address short-term problems and is intended to work across all domains, with current experimentation in Joint Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance and Information Operations. Combined, the three initiatives will assist with meeting the responsibility for the development of concepts, organizational designs and doctrine for assigned joint challenges.

Additional Defence related experimentation activities are outlined in this report under Core Responsibility 4 – Future Force Design.

Key Corporate Risk(s)

There are many risks associated with the Ready Forces Core Responsibility. Two of the Key Corporate Risks directly associated with operations are articulated below:

Military Competencies – There is a risk that DND/CAF will not have the right military personnel, with the right competencies, at the right place and at the right time.

Materiel Maintenance – There is a risk that DND/CAF may have difficulty maintaining its materiel capabilities at the right level to support operations.

The risks above can affect the department’s ability to achieve the Departmental Results of the Ready Forces Core Responsibility.

As the Defence Departmental Results Framework reflects a chain of delivery from conceiving of the required armed forces, to developing them and then executing operations, the activities to mitigate the risks to the Ready Forces Core Responsibility can also be found in other Core Responsibilities which deliver building blocks that enable the results of Ready Forces.

Departmental Result 2.1 – Canadian Armed Forces are ready to conduct concurrent operations

The CAF will generate and sustain high readiness naval, land, air, space, cyber and special operations forces and joint capabilities to meet Force Posture and Readiness levels directed by the CDS and the concurrent mission requirements of SSE. Throughout FY 2020-21, we will progress a number of initiatives to improve readiness, including:

  • Conduct joint and combined exercises to enhance integration and interoperability in 2020-21 including:
    • Operation NANOOKFootnote lxiii: with a planned exercise as well as a presence operation;
    • Exercise TRADEWINDSFootnote lxiv: an annual United States Southern Command exercise aimed at promoting regional security cooperation in the Caribbean region by involving security forces and disaster response agencies to focus on countering threats and Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief;
    • Exercise JOINTEXFootnote lxv: which will involve four activities during 2020-21: the Joint Operations Symposium, a Joint Experimentation Series, a Joint Training Activity and a deliberate feedback loop to inculcate institutional change to evolve the way Canada conducts operations around the world;
    • Exercise RIMPACFootnote lxvi: aimed at providing capabilities to a complex multi-national, joint environment in order to ensure interoperability with Pacific partners and will be used to trial new capabilities, practice advanced force integration training and evaluate force structures in order to advance CAF preparedness for future operations around the world;
    • Exercise MAPLE RESOLVE 20Footnote lxvii: as the premier Canadian Army training event of the year, this exercise validates the leaders and soldiers of a Brigade Group in the contemporary operating environment using live simulation in a force-on-force exercise. During the exercise, approximately 5 500 soldiers will test their abilities to integrate with allies, within a whole-of-government approach to include non-governmental organizations, while operating within a realistic, complex and challenging combat environment. The exercise, designed and developed by the Canadian Manoeuvre Training Centre, provides Canadian Army leaders, soldiers, other CAF personnel and allies with a unique opportunity to validate their combat readiness to support concurrent operations; and
    • Exercise VIGILANT SHIELD: an annual Tri-Command (NORAD, the United States Northern Command (USNORTHCOM) and the Canadian Joint Operations Command) exercise focused on the defence and security of North America.
  • Additional joint and combined exercises include: NORTHERN VIKING 20, SCHRIEVER WARGAMES 20, COALITION VIRTUAL FLAG, JOINT WARRIOR 20 (NATO), RED FLAG ALASKA, AMALGAM DART, GLOBAL THUNDER, UNIFIED RESOLVE, CUTLASS FURY, CYBER FLAG, DEFENDER 20 and GLOBAL ARCHER 2020, working with other government departments and multinational allies to enhance integration and interoperability.
  • Integrate Command and Control, Communications, Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance within the Five Eyes environment.
  • Command and Control (C2) and cooperation with Arctic nations, including the United States through NORAD and USNORTHCOM, in the conduct of Arctic missions or operations.
  • Enhance the preparedness of the CAF by assessing technology trends, threats and opportunities and by exploiting emerging technologies to include virtual Air, Maritime, Space and Cyber warfare environments for CAF, NORAD and coalition combat training, testing and experimentation towards Multi-Domain Command and Control (C2)/Operations.
  • Participate in several CAF and other Government of Canada department's cyber training activities to support Canadian and Continental Defence and to protect international interests from Cyber threats:
    • Ensure the Information Technology infrastructure enables efficient and effective Cyber Operator training and support to key cyber training exercises;
    • Implement capabilities that will improve the resiliency and integration of DND/CAF Command and Control networks and the applications that need to communicate over them;
    • Enhance communication and information exchange capabilities within a Five Eyes environment; and
    • The Canadian Space Operations Centre will be testing and fielding a capable, robust and Canadian Space Operations interoperable Command and Control (C2) system in order to employ, defend and protect space capabilities in support of operations described in SSE.

This photo shows a Canadian solider spotting for two African snipers in what looks like a training session. The snipers have their rifles resting on their helmets and are looking through the optical scopes.

Canadian Special Operations Forces Command

A member of Canadian Special Operations Forces Command assists partner force members during a shooting event as part of Exercise FLINTLOCK 2019. Along with allies, Canadian Special Operations Forces Command remains committed to its African nation partners through participation in security cooperation exercises, such as Exercise FLINTLOCK, as well as other training and capacity-building activities in other locations across the region.

Photo Credit: Master Corporal Mohamed Anis Assari, CSOR Imagery Technician
©2019 DND/MDN


  • Advance the integration of our space-based capabilities. With the RADARSAT Constellation MissionFootnote lxviii (RCM) satellites becoming operational, the CAF will be able to share and leverage satellite imagery, as well as ship identification capabilities, with other government departments and Canada’s allies. The security of the RCM networks is paramount and continually advanced by incorporating the latest protective measures. The CAF is striving towards automating processes that can highlight changes and differences between satellite images in order to reduce the work load for human analysts.

The RADARSAT Constellation Mission (RCM)

The RCM builds on Canada’s expertise and leadership in Earth observation from space and is critical to Canada. Over a dozen departments already use RADARSAT data to deliver services to Canadians, including the CAF. The CAF’s space-related activities are critical for the defence of Canada and North America and enable operations both at home and abroad.

This photo shows two scientists in clean gear observing an experiment.

  • The Royal Canadian Navy (RCN) will integrate Her Majesty’s Canadian Ship Harry DeWolf, the first Arctic and Offshore Patrol Ship, into the fleet. The Arctic and Offshore Patrol Ship will be capable of navigating in sea ice up to one metre thick and will extend the RCN’s ability to operate in the Arctic. This will enhance the CAF’s situational awareness and contribute to asserting and enforcing Canadian sovereignty in the North. The Arctic and Offshore Patrol Ship will also be capable of operating with CH-148 Cyclone helicopter and will be used on a variety of missions at home and around the globe. The Arctic and Offshore Patrol Ship will contribute to coastal surveillance, search and rescue, drug interdiction, humanitarian assistance and disaster relief operations and will be capable of integrating with a range of international partners.
  • The acquisition of six ships will greatly increase the capacity of the RCN’s ability to deploy its vessels simultaneously, both at home and abroad. Acquiring six ships will also enable the Navy to use its fleet more effectively.
  • The Canadian Army (CA) is a soldier-centric, professional and integrated force made up of our Regular Force personnel, Primary Reserves, Canadian Rangers and civilians. Throughout FY 2020-21, the CA will posture for concurrent operations by training and generating combat effective, multi-purpose land forces to deliver decisive land power to meet Canada’s defence objectives. Specifically:
    • The CA’s Managed Readiness System will be refined in order to better enable readiness in support of concurrent operations. This will allow the CA to enhance the execution of national training and education programs, support institutional tasks and achieve force posture and readiness requirements; and
    • Continue the integration of the Primary Reserves, with the Regular Force to reinforce the CA team. This integration will enhance Command and Control relationships and training opportunities, which will ensure that all CA units are prepared to meet assigned tasks and support concurrent operations. To carry out assigned mission tasks, the Primary Reserves, will maintain an agile and responsive force through attraction and retention initiatives in order to support SSE obligations.
  • The Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) will integrate new and replacement capabilities into its existing structure, including the interim fighter fleet and the CC-295 fixed-wing search and rescue aircraft. Aircrew, search and rescue technicians and maintenance personnel will be able to train in a new Search and Rescue Training Centre that will be established at 19 Wing Comox, British Columbia. The RCAF will also implement Future Aircrew TrainingFootnote lxix (FAcT) as a long term training solution to replace the NATO Flying Training in Canada and Contracted Flying Training and Support services contracts as they expire. FAcT will encompass all aspects of training, support and infrastructure for Pilots, Air Combat Systems Officers and Airborne Electronic Sensor Operators.
  • Continued focus will be placed on implementing measures to enhance the retention of experienced RCAF personnel, as outlined in Operations TALENT and EXPERIENCEFootnote lxx.
  • The Canadian Special Operations Forces Command remains at a very high readiness level to disrupt or respond to emerging crisis situations or threats to Canadians and Canadian interests. Further, the Canadian Special Operations Forces Command will contribute to the CAF’s ability to anticipate threats through the generation of forces designed to conduct discreet intelligence collection, surveillance and reconnaissance activities.

For more information, refer to the following websites:


Exercise Maple Resolve

The photo shows four tanks on a hill that seem to be in camouflage.

Members of the Canadian Army conduct a combined arms attack during Exercise MAPLE RESOLVE 19, held May 2019 at 3rd Canadian Division Support Base Edmonton (Detachment Wainwright).

Photo: Private Jordyn Anderson, 3rd Canadian Division Support Base Edmonton (Detachment Wainwright) Imaging.


Planned results

Departmental Results Departmental Result Indicators Target Date to achieve target 2016–17
Actual results
2017–18
Actual results
2018–19
Actual results
2.1 Canadian Armed Forces are ready to conduct concurrent operations % of operations that are capable of being conducted concurrently 100% 31 March 2025 Not Available
New indicator as
of 2018-19
Not Available
New indicator as
of 2018-19
100%
% of force elements that are ready for operations in accordance with established targets 100%
31 March 2025 Not Available
New indicator as
of 2018-19
Not Available
New indicator as
of 2018-19
79%

Financial, human resources and performance information for the Department of National Defence and the Canadian Armed Forces’ Program Inventory is available in the GC InfoBaseFootnote lxxix.

Departmental Result 2.2 – Military equipment is ready for training and operations

  • Equipment is made available to support CAF training and operational requirements through the National Procurement Program. In particular, National Procurement is the term given to DND Corporate accounts aligned to the in-service sustainment and disposal of aerospace, land and maritime equipment, as well as ammunition and common use materiel such as uniforms and test equipment. In-service sustainment includes maintenance, engineering support, engineering changes and inventory replenishment. The department’s materiel group is responsible for the execution of the National Procurement Program (located in this report under Core Responsibility 5 – Procurement of Capabilities) which is expected to expend over $3 billion in FY 2020-21.
  • The department’s materiel group will continue to provide equipment support to maritime, land and aerospace equipment, as well as ammunition and common use materiel such as uniforms and test equipment. Equipment support includes maintenance, engineering support, engineering changes and inventory replenishment necessary so that equipment is available to support CAF training and operational requirements. Serviceability of equipment is ensured by the CAF undertaking repair activities within their formations.
  • To achieve an 80% serviceability rate of its 13 key fleets for 2023, the CA will continue with the implementation of the Canadian Army Equipment Readiness Plan which was established in FY 2017-18 to ensure the serviceability of CA equipment is maintained to support readiness and operational outputs. Specifically, during FY 2020-21 the Canadian Army Equipment Readiness Plan will be updated to encapsulate the lessons learned since its implementation and the CA will improve its current Serviceability and Sustainment Dashboard to better track, monitor and predict maintenance needs and improve readiness.

Planned results

Departmental Results Departmental Result Indicators Target Date to achieve target 2016–17
Actual results
2017–18
Actual results
2018–19
Actual results
2.2 Military equipment is ready for training and operations % of maritime key fleets that are serviceable to meet training and readiness requirementsy At least 90%* 31 March 2021 89% 95% 91.40%
% of land fleets that are serviceable to meet training and readiness requirements At least 70%*
31 March 2021 Not Available
New indicator as
of 2018-19
Not Available
New indicator as
of 2018-19
72%
% of aerospace fleets that are serviceable to meet training and readiness requirements At least 85%*
31 March 2021 Not Available
New indicator as
of 2018-19
Not Available
New indicator as
of 2018-19
79.10%

Notes:

* A portion of the fleet will normally be subject to repairs due to the use of fleets and thus not be serviceable. As such, a target of 100% would not reflect a realistic goal. A healthy fleet should, however, reflect a low proportion of the fleet that is unserviceable in order to ensure that the appropriate level of training and readiness can be provided. Note that the concept of “serviceable” differs significantly between military environments due to the inherent differences across types of equipment.

The RCN does not include vessels that are unavailable due to a scheduled maintenance period (such as Short Work Periods and Docking Work Periods) when calculating the percentage of vessels that are ready for training and operations. The indicator is calculated with the following formula: Total number of vessels in a key fleet x 365 days (minus all days spent in a scheduled maintenance period) divided by actual number of days those vessels were serviceable.

In the Maritime context, the indicator refers to the aggregate number of serviceable vessels that comprise the key fleets. These fleets are the Halifax, Victoria, Kingston and Harry DeWolf classes.

In the army context, the indicator refers to the aggregate number of equipment that comprise the land fleets.

In the air force context, the indicator refers to the aggregate number of equipment that comprise the aerospace fleets.

Financial, human resources and performance information for the Department of National Defence and the Canadian Armed Forces’ Program Inventory is available in the GC InfoBaseFootnote lxxx.

Planned budgetary financial resources

2020–21 budgetary spending (as indicated in Main Estimates)
2020–21 Planned spending
2021–22 Planned spending 2022–23 Planned spending
9,716,036,927 9,760,714,328 9,789,287,544 10,003,032,978

Financial, human resources, and performance information for the Department of National Defence and the Canadian Armed Forces' Program Inventory is available in the GC InfoBaseFootnote lxxxi.

Planned human resources

2020–21 Planned full-time equivalents 2021–22 Planned full-time equivalents
2022–23 Planned full-time equivalents
46,489 46,917 47,280

Financial, human resources, and performance information for the Department of National Defence and the Canadian Armed Forces' Program Inventory is available in the GC InfoBaseFootnote lxxxii.

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