IMT Transition to CIM

Lots of changes coming.

NMAC Correspondence M2022-09
July 27, 2022

To: Geographic Area Coordinating Group Chairs

From: National Multi-Agency Coordinating Group

Subject: Complex Incident Management Transition Strategies for 2022

With the 2022 wildfire year well underway, the National Multi-Agency Coordinating Group (NMAC)
is relying on the Geographic Area Coordinating Groups to capitalize on opportunities to implement
transition strategies for Complex Incident Management (CIM). Although 2023 will also be a
transition year, with full implementation completed in spring 2024, Geographic Area Coordinating
Groups, Operations Groups, Incident Management Teams (IMTs), and individuals must take
advantage of opportunities to transition also in 2022 to alleviate missed opportunities and potential
delays as we work towards full implementation.

NMAC’s expectation is that all Geographic Areas (GAs) actively seek opportunities to transition
Type 1 and Type 2 IMTs to Complex Incident Management Teams (CIMTs). This begins with the
transition of currently qualified Type 1 and Type 2 Command and General Staff (C&G) personnel to
Complex C&G following the guidance provided by National Wildfire Coordinating Group (NWCG)
Memorandum 22-002, Transition Plan for Complex Incident Management Pilot Phase, Each agency may certify their
C&G responders who meet the requirements without further coordination with GAs or IMTs.

All GAs need to support responders seeking assistance in completing evaluations and provide flexible
options for doing so. Utilize transition strategies such as:
• Including Complex C&G positions in priority trainee programs,
• Identifying field evaluators to assist IMTs/responders,
• Providing flexible opportunities and assignments for IMTs and members seeking evaluation,
• Prioritize personnel for attendance at required courses, and
• Creating assignment opportunities for C&G members and/or IMTs that need field evaluation.

As implementation of CIM progresses, NMAC also wants to address common questions received by
NMAC representatives to provide consistent information.

Common Questions:
Question: Should qualified Type 1 C&G responders get the CIM qualification this year in
their respective qualification systems?
Answer: Yes, current responders certified in a Type 1 C&G position should be
granted Complex position competency in the associated position by their Certifying
Official. This will also allow them to conduct field evaluations for other responders.

Question: Should qualified Type 2 C&G responders that have completed Type 1 C&G courses
get the Complex qualification added in their respective qualification systems?
Answer: Yes, if a responder is certified in a Type 2 C&G position (this includes Type 1
trainees) and has successfully completed S-520, Advanced Incident Management or the
Complex Incident Management Course (CIMC), the responder should be granted
Complex position competency in the associated position by their Certifying Official.

Question: What should responders qualified as Type 2 C&G who have not had S-520 or
CIMC do this year?
Answer: Current responders certified in a Type 2 C&G position (this includes Type 1
trainees) that have not successfully completed S-520 or CIMC can attempt to gain
acceptance into a scheduled S-520 or CIMC course or the responder may have an
NWCG 2022 CIM Field Evaluation Form (NWCG Position Catalog | NWCG)
completed by a qualified evaluator. Both pathways are considered equivalent.
Responders DO NOT need to complete both.

Question: Do field evaluations need to be conducted on Type 1 incidents?
Answer: No, field evaluations are independent of current incident typing. Evaluations
may be conducted on Type 1, Type 2, or Complex incidents. Incidents must have
sufficient complexity to perform the evaluation.

Question: Who can do field evaluations?
Answer: Per NWCG direction, the field evaluator must be either qualified in a
Complex C&G position in the functional area being evaluated or a qualified Incident
Commander Complex (ICCI). This requirement is inclusive of Type 1 qualified C&G
and ICs, even if they have not yet been certified as Complex C&G or ICCI by their
agency. Additionally, it is not required that a full CIMT or C&G group collectively evaluate
another IMT. The field evaluation is individual in nature and should not evaluate any
team’s processes or standard operating procedures.

Question: Do field evaluations require a full 14-day assignment?
Answer: No, the length of an evaluation should be as short as practicable depending
upon the proficiency of the responder. One evaluation is sufficient unless the responder does not meet the competencies.

Question: Will there be additional training opportunities (S-520, CIMC) this training season?
Answer: The Geographic Area Training Representatives (GATRs) and S-520 and
CIMC course steering committees are working to identify needs for additional
courses. If additional course presentations are required, NMAC strongly encourages
attendance at these courses.
Question: Will the NWCG Wildland Fire Risk and Complexity Assessment (RCA), PMS 236,
and the Wildland Fire Decision Support System (WFDSS) be updated to reflect Complex
Answer: Yes, NWCG is updating the RCA. A draft will be available for use in 2023,
with a final version released early in 2024, replacing the current RCA. WFDSS will
also be updated accordingly.

For additional questions, please contact the Incident Workforce Development Group (IWCG)
Coordinator, Jesse Bender.

/s/ Ken Schmid, Chair, NMAC