The NRCS uses a nine step planning process whenever it begins a project. The purpose of the steps is to develop and implement plans that protect, conserve, and enhance natural resources within a social and economic perspective.
Step 1: Identify
Planners take into account the current issues of the clientsâ€™ area and as planning continues, other problems and opportunities may be identified.
Step 2: Determine Objectives
A conservationist guides the process so that it includes the clientsâ€™ needs, values, resources used, and on-site and off-site ecological protection.
Step 3: Inventory Resources
An inventory of local resources is collected. (soil, water, animals, social and economical)
Step 4: Analyze Resource Data
After taking inventory, the resource data is studied to better understand the natural resource conditions.
Step 5: Formulate Alternatives
During this step multiple alternatives are considered to provide the client with the chance to consider several possibilities.
Step 6: Evaluate Alternatives
After planning alternate solutions, their effectiveness is determined in addressing the clientâ€™s current problem.
Step 7: Making Decisions
The landowner chooses which project or plan will work best for their situation. The planner prepares the documentation.
Step 8: Implement the Plan
The landowner carries out the conservation treatments that make up the planned conservation system.
Step 9: Evaluate the Plan
Follow up with the client is performed to evaluate operation and maintenance needs.