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NWS OWA Resources

OWA Catalog
OWA Catalog
White Paper
White Paper
OWA Briefings to Leadership and Congress; OWA Deliverables Slide DeckĀ 
OWA Briefings to Leadership and Congress;
OWA Deliverables Slide Deck 

The National Weather Service is in the initial stages of evolving to meet society’s growing demands for more timely, nimble, accurate, and consistent forecasts and warnings. The goal is to better connect these products and services to decision makers at the local, state, tribal, and federal levels so they not only have the information, but can act on it to protect the public. However, NWS’ current operations are based on decades-old tools and workflows that are not designed to meet today’s demands.

In 2015 and 2016, an Operations and Workforce Analysis (OWA) was conducted to generate findings and ideas to help the NWS move toward the vision of providing Impact-based Decision Support Services (IDSS) to build a Weather-Ready Nation, and to address recommendations from external reviews of NWS operations. When NWS completed the two-year OWA project last year, it began cataloging all the data, analysis and options that were produced as part of the review. Through this website, NWS is making key documents related to this project available to employees, Congress, and other interested parties.

The OWA project provided a large number of findings and ideas on how to move the NWS forward. In general, the analysis noted the high level of partner support for the NWS, its products and services, and the concept of IDSS. It noted the NWS professional workforce is highly skilled, trained, and motivated in their mission delivery. But it also noted the NWS structure, workflow, and operational processes may not be ideally suited for providing the level of IDSS core partners need.

The OWA formed the basis for Evolve NWS initiatives and activities currently being managed by the Evolve Program Management Office (PMO) within the NWS. A subset of the OWA recommendations have been transitioned to the testing and evaluation phase, which is being led by the PMO.

The NWS is excited about the ideas and actions generated by the OWA that will help it evolve and improve the National Weather Service as it builds a Weather-Ready Nation.

Please click on the links below:

OWA Catalog -- Documents the data, analysis, and findings of the completed OWA project, and introduces the next steps in the evolution of the National Weather Service. Intended for public reference, note that the Catalog does NOT reflect NWS leadership's decisions about what findings would move forward to the testing and evaluation phase, nor is it an implementation plan.

Additional Reference Documents:

OWA White Paper -- This document details the findings and ideas generated by the OWA project from May 2015 to August 2016. This document was intended for internal discussion by National Weather Service leadership. Key findings and ideas are captured and explained with project methods and the breadth of options/data considered by the OWA teams. This document served as final deliverable for the OWA project.

OWA Briefings to Leadership and Congress; OWA Deliverables Slide Deck -- This comprehensive document includes high level briefing summaries of each of the OWA phases for NOAA and NWS leadership and Congressional audiences, along with the full working slides for phases 1-3. These internal documents were pre-decisional in nature but are included in the interest of transparency.