Infantry Drills

A-86: Analysis of Time Available

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A-86. The fifth mission variable of METT-TC is time available. Time refers to many factors during the operations process (plan, prepare, execute, and assess). The four categories the leader considers include:

  • Planning and preparation.
  • Operations.
  • Next higher echelon’s timeline.
  • Enemy timeline.

A-87. During all phases, leaders consider critical times, unusable time, the time it takes to accomplish activities, the time it takes to move, priorities of work, and tempo of operations. Other critical conditions to consider include visibility and weather data, and events such as higher headquarters tasks and required rehearsals. Implied in the analysis of time is leader prioritization of events and sequencing of activities.

A-88. As addressed in step 1 of the TLP, time analysis is a critical aspect to planning, preparation, and execution. Time analysis is often the first thing a leader does. The leader must not only appreciate how much time is available, but he also must be able to appreciate the time/space aspects of preparing, moving, fighting, and sustaining. He must be able to see his own tasks and enemy actions in relation to time. Most importantly, as events occur, he must adjust the time available to him and assess its impact on what he wants to accomplish. Finally, he must update previous timelines for his subordinates, listing all events affecting the platoon and its subordinate elements.

Next: A-89: Analysis of Civil Considerations

Go Back To: U.S. Army FM 3-21.8: The Infantry Rifle Platoon and Squad