In support of the Department of Homeland Security’s Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program (HSEEP), we developed 12 animated videos to highlight key components of the exercise process to empower viewers with the tools and knowledge to build their own exercise programs. Exercises are a key component of national preparedness — they provide the whole community with the opportunity to shape planning, assess and validate capabilities, and address areas for improvement. HSEEP provides a set of guiding principles for exercise and evaluation programs, as well as a common approach to exercise program management, design and development, conduct, evaluation, and improvement planning.
Given that adult learning now occurs through many modes and platforms, custom videos hosted on YouTube provide an additional way to reach the broadest national audience. Animated videos allowed FEMA to elevate the impact of its HSEEP messaging and communicate doctrinal language in a dynamic and engaging way. Animation breaks down complex topics and makes them easy to understand.
SOLUTION & RESULTS
We collaborated on the development of scripts and storyboarding of animation, consistent with instructional design principles and adult learning best practices. By coordinating with subject matter experts from FEMA’s Emergency Management Institute and Booz Allen’s Experiential Analytics exercise capability, narration professionals, 508 compliance specialists, and video development subcontractors, we ensured multiple perspectives were considered. In order to ensure the videos were developed according to established timelines and consistent with budget and scoping requirements, the team employed a variety of program management measures.
We held weekly Agile-style sprint meetings with the clients and a separate weekly sync with the subcontractor team. We also developed and regularly updated a Project Management Professional (PMP)-based dashboard that displayed the status and progression of video production. Moreover, we developed a feedback template to streamline feedback received from FEMA staff across the country. This template allowed us to receive timely and actionable feedback that could be quickly adjudicated and incorporated into future iterations of the videos.
The videos have been very well received by the FEMA client team. One FEMA client stated, “You have done a great job with the videos. Everyone that has viewed them has liked them, so thank you for the hard work on them and being part of the team.” A key National Exercises Division (NED) client stated, “I greatly appreciate all your support during this project; we could not have gotten it accomplished in the amount of time we did without you.”