An AAR is a structured discussion focusing on drawing learning from an event/process. It looks at the divergence between the planned and the actual, and then identifies what went well or ill. The aim of an after-action review is to improve performance in the future by reflecting on the work of a group and identifying strengths, weaknesses, and areas for improvement. Simplicity is at the heart of the AAR, offering considerable flexibility on how it is applied. The tool is centered on bringing the relevant group together and the following themes:
What was expected or supposed to happen?
What actually occurred?
What did and did not go well and why?
What can be improved and how?