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  2. Joint Capabilities Integration and Development System (JCIDS) Documentation

Joint Capabilities Integration and Development System (JCIDS) Documentation


Supports the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (CJCS) and the Joint Requirements Oversight Council (JROC) in identifying, assessing, and prioritizing joint military capability requirements.

General Information

The JCIDS process provides the baseline requirements for documentation, review, and validation of capability requirements, at all classification levels, across the Department. JCIDS is the process used by the Joint Requirements Oversight Council (JROC) to fulfill its statutory responsibilities to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (CJCS), including but not limited to identifying, assessing, validating, and prioritizing joint military capability requirements.

General Document Guidance

Capability requirements documents and validation memorandums serve as the enduring artifacts to identify exactly what has been validated, support capability requirement portfolio management, enable acquisition of capability solutions, and inform many other processes and activities across DOD. Therefore, it is critical that documents are robustly written and in compliance with JCIDS guidance.

The JCIDS Manual provides the documentation content requirements/formats and outlines an iterative staffing and validation process. The manual specifies that document content should be sufficiently conveyed so that the document can be read and understood in a stand-alone manner. Additional documents may be referenced in the document and included in the Knowledge Management/Decision Support (KM/DS) system. 

Categories of Capability Requirement Documents

The three categories of capability requirement documents specified by the JCIDS are:

  • Initial Capabilities Document (ICD) (including Information Systems Initial Capabilities Document (IS-ICD))
  • Capability Development Document (CCD) (including Information Systems Capability Development Document (IS-CDD))
  • Doctrine, Organization, Training, materiel, Leadership, and Education, Personnel, Facilities, and Policy (DOTmLPF-P) Change Recommendation (DCR)

The identification of capability requirements with significant capability gaps typically leads to an ICD that can then drive development of capability solutions that are materiel, non-materiel, or a combination of both. As a capability solution progresses to a CDD, the level of discussion and analysis in CDDs and is more refined than the information in ICDs. CDDs should be tailored toward a particular materiel approach for a capability solution.

Joint DCRs are tailored toward a particular non-materiel approach for a capability solution where coordination is required between more than one DoD Component.

Initial Capabilities Document (ICD) (including the IS-ICD)

The purpose of an ICD is to document capability requirements and associated capability gaps in cases where the Sponsor deems the operational risk of unmitigated capability gaps to be unacceptable. The ICD provides traceability to the operational context and other relevant factors for the capability requirements, quantifies any associated capability gaps and operational risks across the joint force based upon the identified capability requirements, and proposes materiel and/or non-materiel approaches to closing or mitigating some or all of the identified capability gaps.

Capability Development Document (CDD) (including the IS-CDD variant)

The purpose of a CDD is to propose development of a specific materiel capability solution intended to wholly or partially satisfy validated capability requirements and close or mitigate associated capability gaps. The CDD is system specific and applies to a single increment of capability in an evolutionary acquisition program. Each increment of a program will either have its own CDD or a separate annex in a master CDD. Key Performance Parameters (KPPs) are introduced in the CDD. Cost will be included in the CDD as life-cycle cost or, if available, total ownership costs.

Doctrine, Organization, Training, materiel, Leadership and Education, Personnel, Facilities, and Policy (DOTmLPF-P) Change Recommendation (DCR)

The purpose of a DCR is to propose non-materiel capability solutions as an alternative to, or complement of, materiel capability solutions and is one of two possible outputs of solutions analysis. DCRs may also be used to validate capability requirements where service contracting provides the most appropriate capability solution. A DCR recommends changes to existing joint elements when changes are not associated with a new defense acquisition program. The DCR process is the method DOD uses to mitigate capability gaps using non-materiel approaches.