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Working Information Systems to Determine Optimal Management Training

The Working Information Systems to Determine Optimal Management course provides guidance for MHS managers, data analysts and policy makers in the use of MHS data in support of operational questions, management decisions and corporate goals. Using a mix of instructive briefings and hands on exercises, WISDOM strives to provide these analysts and decision-makers with tools they need to support data-driven analysis and decision-making—keys to successful organizational performance. In general, WISDOM is the educational vehicle that can translate the widespread availability of corporate data through the MHS Management Analysis and Reporting Tool (M2) into improved MHS operations.

>>View WISDOM Course Schedule


Attendees consist of all levels of MHS managers and analysts from stand-alone clinics to offices of the Surgeons General and Assistant Secretary of Defense (Health Affairs), as well as contractors and other users of MHS data. While the target audience is assumed to be entry-level with no presumed knowledge in any of the major competencies, actual attendees often have skills in one or more of the instructional areas, and the course is sought even by some considered to be advanced analysts.  

  • For questions regarding the WISDOM course, please send an email message to DHA NCR J-5 A&E List
  • To obtain a M2 account please send an email to the MHS Help Desk.


The faculty consists of individuals with expertise encompassing:

  • MHS systems and data
  • Data manipulation and analysis tools
  • Management science of decision-making
  • Administration of MHS health care organizations
  • Formulation of policies and plans

MHS data experts are versed in the specifics of MHS data and present the material specific to each data type in the WISDOM data blocks. Business Objects and Excel experts have extensive experience using the tools for data extraction and analysis. Doctoral-level management science experts integrate the MHS corporate goals, the decision-making processes, the appropriate analyses, and the available tools and data. They provide instruction through lectures, demonstrations, and hands-on exercises using Business Objects and Microsoft Excel.


The course reviews the basic processes of data-driven decision-making, with emphasis on the use and limitations of contemporary MHS data and data systems in evaluating alternatives or answering operational questions. WISDOM strives to guide course participants in combining decision-making and technical skills to work towards more efficient and effective management. Recognizing that not all attendees are decision-makers and many are called upon to support informational data requests not directly related to decision-making, the course also emphasizes the importance of analysts’ interactions with those requesting data to effectively facilitate providing just the right data to answer operational questions. The majority of class time is devoted to the following two competency areas with additional instruction in decision-making and analysis to provide operational context.

>>Download a Sample Agenda

Using Software

The WISDOM course provides full instruction on the use of Business Objects and focused instruction on exploiting Microsoft Excel for analysis purposes. Attendees are required to be Excel-literate prior to attending the course. Demonstrations and exercises allow participants to gain hands-on experience with the tools in a classroom/learning environment, using real-world data and issues. WISDOM emphasizes using the software for accurate information, with less emphasis on using the software to create presentations or visual aids.

MHS Data

The course provides both an overview of different types of business and information systems used by the MHS (to include information systems, operational systems, corporate data warehouses and data marts), and specific detail on available data coming from those sources and accessible through the M2 data mart. Each data type has a block addressing its timeliness, characteristics, weaknesses, and proper use. Included are blocks on:

  • Data about beneficiaries and enrollees
  • Direct care encounters
  • Workload
  • MTF staffing and expenses
  • Purchased care (claims) data
  • Pharmacy data

Attendees learn to select the best data from the best source for a particular information purpose, and to beware of data characteristics that could warp understanding of the real world situation.

Last Updated: October 25, 2023
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