Process to Obtain Approval of a DoD Internal Information Collection and a Report Control Symbol

All DoD internal information collections must be approved and assigned a report control symbol in accordance with the procedures in Directive-type Memorandum 12-004 and as outlined on this website.

In accordance with the policy in DoD Instruction 8910.01 and the procedures in Directive-type Memorandum 12-004, DoD and Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD) Components must not respond to DoD internal information collections that do not have a valid report control symbol.

Download the DoD Internal Information Collections Approval Process Generator to create a custom list of the procedures required to approve and license your DoD internal information collection. Download a list of the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD) and DoD Components.

Action Officers seeking approval for collections internal to the Office of the Director of Administration and Management (DA&M): visit the DA&M guidance and process webpage.

Expand each section below to review the steps to obtain a report control symbol for a DoD internal information collection.


Overview of the Process to Obtain a Report Control Symbol

Download the DoD Internal Information Collections Approval Process Generator to create a custom list of the procedures required to approve and license your DoD internal information collection.

The process to obtain approval of an information collection and a report control symbol ensures that:

  1. The information collection is vetted by the DoD.
  2. The cost of the information collection has been coordinated with and approved by the respondents to the collection.
  3. Personally identifiable information is appropriately safeguarded.
  4. The information collected is stored and recorded by DoD personnel for official DoD purposes.
  5. The information is collected in accordance with all policies, procedures, and statutory guidance that govern information collection.

Step 1: Contact your Component Information Management Control Officer (IMCO)

Contact your Component Information Management Control Officer (IMCO) (DoD personnel only; CAC validation required) to ensure that your information collection is not duplicative and to verify the processes that are required to obtain approval for your collection. Your Component IMCO confirms the collection requires a report control symbol, ensures against duplication and advises on the approval process that is outlined on this website.

Step 2: Draft the DD Form 2936, obtain a cost summary with the DoD Cost Guidance Portal and obtain Component Approval

Draft the DD Form 2936 and complete a cost summary with the DoD Cost Guidance Portal. Download an Example DD Form 2936 Action Package.

The requesting Component’s action officer must complete all sections of the DD Form 2936 with the exception of sections:

  • 11. Coordination
  • 12.a, 12.b., 12.c., 12.d., and 12.e. Respondent’s Coordination (the requesting Component’s action officer must select the respondents in section 12 and provide the cost information for each responding Component)
  • 13. DoD Component Information Management Control Officer (IMCO)
  • 14. For Use by DoD Internal Information Collections Officer Only


If the collection is being routed via the issuance process, Requesting Component Approving Official signature is not necessary in sections 12.a, 12.b., 12.c., 12.d., and 12.e. of the DD Form 2936; however, the requesting Component’s action officer must select the respondents in section 12 and provide the cost information for each responding Component. Download a list of the OSD and DoD Components.

The justification statement (see section 6 of the DD Form 2936) should include:

  • A detailed description of how the information will be used, by whom and the purpose. Does the information collection involve the use of technological collection techniques? Describe efforts made to reduce the burden and cost on the respondents.
  • A list of risks or penalties associated with not having the information collection request approved.

If the information collection is a survey, attach the package sent to the Defense Manpower and Data Center (DMDC) to include the justification statement. See Step 3 for more information on surveys and coordination with DMDC.

If the internal information collection is also a collection of information from the public, attach the justification statement submitted with the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Form 83-I. For more information on public collections, visit the DoD Public Information Collections Website.

Complete a cost summary at the DoD Cost Guidance Portal (DoD personnel only; CAC validation required). Download training on the using the Cost Guidance Portal to cost a DoD internal information collection from our FAQ and Training Webpage.

  • Instructions for completing the Cost Guidance Portal are located to the right of the tool. The cost summary should include costs to the owner of the information collection as well as costs to the respondents. The cost summary should reflect estimated costs for one year of the information collection (e.g., if the information collection will be conducted once, then the cost summary will reflect a onetime cost; if the information collection will be conducted monthly, then the cost summary will reflect each collection over a twelve month period).
  • The costs listed on the DD Form 2936 must match the cost on the cost summary.
  • Cost summaries must be completed before the DD Form 2936 to the requesting Component’s Senior Executive Service (SES) member for signature.

All requests for report control symbols must include a cost summary methodology statement; a statement that explains how the costs are captured on the cost summary. Cost summary methodology statement template:

This information collection will cost the Department of Defense [total cost from the cost summary (e.g., $7,690.00)] per year. The information collection will be administered to [list the responding Components (see a list of DoD and OSD Components) ] [frequency of the collection (e.g., four times each year)]. [Describe the number of individuals from which information will be solicited and how much time the collection will require from those individuals (e.g., we will solicit information from 10 individuals in each DoD Component and it will take each respondent approximately 30 minutes to complete the information collection request)]. [Describe any costs to the requesting Component (e.g., the cost to the requesting Component to develop and administer this survey is $100 each time the survey is administered. The initial contract cost to develop the survey is a onetime cost of $1000)].

Have the DD Form 2936 signed by a Senior Executive Service (SES) member in the requesting Component. The requesting Component’s SES signature is not necessary if coordinating via the DoD issuance process though the collection’s cost information must be listed on the SD Form 106, “DoD Directives Program Coordination Record.” See Step 4 for more information on coordinating a collection with its prescribing DoD issuance. See the DoD Issuances Website for more information on DoD issuances.

Step 3: Obtain mandatory coordination and special instructions for surveys

The Component action officer submits the DD Form 2936, the collection instrument, and a supporting statement to mandatory coordinators as applicable.

Component Forms Manager: Information collections involving the use of a form must be coordinated with the requesting Component’s Forms Manager to determine if the form should be controlled in accordance with DoD Manual 7750.07. The Component Forms Manager assists the action officer throughout the report control symbol process with the DD Form 67 approval process. Visit the DoD Forms Management Officers Website for a list of Component Forms Managers. If coordination with a Components Forms Manager is required, the Forms Manager must sign the DD Form 2936 in section 11.

Director, Defense Manpower and Data Center (DMDC): All surveys must be submitted to the Director, DMDC for review. The action officer must create an account through the DMDC Data Request System (DRS). The action officer is contacted directly by DMDC. The action officer drafts a DMDC supporting statement, and submits the collection instrument, the DD Form 2936, and the DMDC supporting statement via email to DMDC. DMDC conducts a review and assists the action officer directly. DMDC forwards coordination requests to the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD) Privacy Official and the Office of the Human Research Protection Program (HRPP) as necessary. If coordination with DMDC is required, a DMDC official must sign the DD Form 2936 in section 11.

Component or Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD) Privacy Official: All information collection requests must be coordinated with the requesting Component’s Privacy Official or the OSD Privacy Official to ensure compliance with privacy policies. Coordination with the OSD Privacy Official is mandatory if the information collection is a survey. If coordination with the OSD Privacy Official is required, the survey will be forwarded automatically to the OSD Privacy Official for coordination after coordination with DMDC is complete. If the collection is not a survey, the action officer submits the collection instrument and DD Form 2936 to their Component Privacy Official via email. Visit the Defense Privacy and Civil Liberties Office Website for a list of Component Privacy points of contact. A Privacy Official must sign the DD Form 2936 in section 11.

Human Research Protection Program (HRPP) Manager: Information collections involving focus groups or the gathering of information on human subjects must be coordinated with the HRPP Manager and must comply with HRPP policy. DMDC submits the DD Form 2936, collection instrument and supporting statement to the Office of the HRPP; HRPP provides review and assists the action officer directly. If coordination with HRPP is required, an HRPP official must sign the DD Form 2936 in section 11.

Component Chief Information Officer (CIO): All requests for collection of information via computer systems or in electronic format must be coordinated with the requesting Component’s CIO to ensure that the information will be appropriately safeguarded. The action officer submits the collection instrument and DD Form 2936 via email to the Component CIO. The Component CIO provides a review of the information collection and assists the action officer directly. See DoD Instruction 8550.01 for more information on the collection of non-public information via internet-based capabilities. If coordination with the Component CIO is required, a the Component CIO must sign the DD Form 2936 in section 11.

Component Records Manager: All information collection requests must be coordinated with the requesting Component's Records Management Official as required to ensure that the appropriate records disposition schedule has been identified in accordance with the respective Component's records disposition schedules. The action officer submits the collection instrument and DD Form 2936 to the Component Records Manager via email; the Component Records Manager provides a review of the information collection and assists the action officer directly. Visit the National Archives Federal Agency’s Records Officers Website for a list of Component Records Management Officials. The Component Records Manager should sign the DD Form 2936 in section 11.

Component Office of General Counsel: DoD Components must consult with their Office of General Counsel if planning to provide gifts or payments to Federal employees for participation in an information collection. The action officer submits the collection instrument and DD Form 2936 to the Component General Counsel via email; the Component General Counsel provides review of the information collection and assists the action officer directly. If coordination with the Component’s General Counsel is required, the General Counsel must sign the DD Form 2936 in section 11.

Step 4: Coordinate your collection

The DD Form 2936 must be submitted to each responding Component for coordination. Each responding Component provides coordination and Senior Executive Service (SES) member (or equivalent) signature on the DD Form 2936 and returns the form to the requesting Component’s action officer.

Steps 1 through 3 must be completed before the DD Form 2936 is submitted to responding Components for coordination.

Information collections prescribed by statute, law, Federal regulation, or Executive Order are not optional and may be approved without the concurrence of all respondents as long as the respondents are given the opportunity to coordinate.

Responding Components must be given a minimum of 15 working days to coordinate on the information collection and its cost.

Contact your Information Management Control Officer (IMCO) (DoD personnel only; CAC validation required) for assistance with routing the DD Form 2936 for respondent coordination.

or Step 4: Coordinate your collection with its prescribing DoD issuance

All information collections prescribed in a DoD issuance (to include those also prescribed by statute, law, Federal regulation, or Executive Order) may be coordinated with the issuance as one action in accordance with DoD Instruction 5025.01. See the DoD Issuances Website for more information on DoD issuances.

The respondents’ signatures and your Component’s approving official’s signatures (sections 9 and 12) are not required on the DD Form 2936 if the DD Form 2936 is routed on the Directives Division Portal with its prescribing issuance.

Template for SD Form 106 purpose statement including the cost of a DoD internal information collection: This issuance prescribes the [title of the collection], a DoD internal information collection. This information collection will cost the Department of Defense [enter total cost from the cost summary obtained on the DoD Cost Guidance Portal] per fiscal year. This information collection will be administered to [list DoD and OSD Components ] and it will cost each Component [list cost] to respond. This information collection will cost the requesting Component [list cost] to administer.

Example SD Form 106 purpose statement including the cost of a DoD internal information collection: This issuance prescribes the quarterly example survey, a DoD internal information collection. This survey will cost the Department of Defense $7,690.00 per fiscal year. The survey will be administered to Army, Navy, Air Force, the Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness, and the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition Technology and Logistics and it will cost each Component $1,600 to respond. This survey will cost the requesting Component $1,400 to administer.

See the DoD issuance templates and standards for example information collections requirements paragraph in DoD issuances and for example required bullets in DoD issuances action memorandums.

Step 5: Submit the DD Form 2936 action package to your Component Information Management Control Officer (IMCO)

Submit the DD Form 2936 approval package to your Component Information Management Control Officer (IMCO) (DoD personnel only; CAC validation required) for review, approval, signature, and routing to the DoD Internal Information Collections Officer.

The DD Form 2936 approval package must include:

  • The DD Form 2936. The DD Form 2936 must be signed at the Senior Executive Service (SES) level or equivalent by the requesting Component and each responding Component (unless routed with the prescribing issuance).
  • All cost summaries associated with the information collection and the CAPE methodology statement.
  • Copies of coordination with the Component or OSD Privacy Official, the Component Records Management Official, the Component Chief Information Officer (CIO), the Director, Defense Manpower and Data Center (DMDC), the Human Research and Protection Program (HRPP) Manager, and the Component Forms Manager as applicable.
  • A copy of or a detailed description of the proposed collection instrument.
  • A copy of the prescribing document.
  • The justification statement.


The Component IMCO will review the DD Form 2936 action package, sign the DD Form 2936, and forward the final package to the DoD Internal Information Collections Officer (IICO). The DoD IICO will approve the information collection and assign it a report control symbol.

Once the report control symbol is activated, the information collection may commence. The active report control symbol will be listed in the DoD Internal Information Collections System for verification.


Changes to and transfers of DoD internal information collections

Reinstatement: The information collection was approved previously but the report control symbol (RCS) has expired. Submit a new DD Form 2936 approval package by following steps 1-5 above.

Revision: The RCS has not expired and the requesting Component wishes to make changes to the information collection. For minor changes, contact your Component Information Management Control Officer (IMCO) (DoD personnel only; CAC validation required). Sections 1through 9 and 13 of the DD Form 2936 are mandatory for revision requests. Complete the remaining sections as applicable. Justification statement for revision requests: Select “Explanation of Revisions to Information Collection” in section 6 of the DD Form 2936. Include a detailed description of the revision instead of composing a new justification statement.

Transfers of Responsibility: To transfer responsibility for an internal information collection and the ownership of the associated report control symbol, the new responsible OSD or DoD Component must submit a DD Form 2936 requesting a revision (see procedures for revisions on the DD Form 2936). The DD Form 2936 must be signed by the new requesting OSD or DoD Component at the SES level. A new cost summary must be submitted with the revision request and the previous responsible Component must approve the transfer at the SES level by either signing the DD Form 2936-1, "Request for Sponsorship Transfer of a DoD Internal Information Collection" or by signing a memorandum requesting the transfer.

Extension: There are no revisions to the collection and there is no change in the cost of the information collection. Extensions are granted for a maximum of two years. Do not complete sections 10, 11, and 12 of the DD Form 2936. Complete all other sections. Justification statement for extension requests: Select “Explanation of Request for Extension” in section 6 of the DD Form 2936. Explain why an extension to the information collection is necessary instead of composing a new justification statement.

Emergency approval procedures

Insufficient planning or administrative oversight do not warrant emergency approval.

The DoD Internal Information Collections Officer (whs.mc-alex.esd.mbx.dd-dod-internal-information-collections@mail.mil) will determine if an information collection warrants emergency approval.

Emergency approvals receive an expiration date of 180 days.

Submission of all remaining documentation is required before the 180 day expiration date.

The DD Form 2936 must be signed by the OSD or DoD Component Head of the requesting Component.

Collections from an entity external to DoD

Another Federal agency or entity external to DoD requests information from the DoD: Your Component may serve as the official DoD sponsor for the collection and your Component will complete the DD Form 2936 process on behalf of the Federal agency.

Your Component requests information from another Federal agency: Complete the DD Form 2936 process as well as any additional procedures required by the other Federal agency.

DoD public and internal information collections

Begin the process to obtain an Office of Management and Budget (OMB) control number for the public part of the collection.

Some coordination obtained during the public collections clearance process will be submitted during the DD Form 2936 process.

The cost information prepared for the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) 83-I Form does not include the cost to the DoD and OSD Components to respond to the internal information collection.

See the DoD Public Information Collections Website for more information on obtaining an OMB control number.