Cost Unit Leader*
COST Incident Position Description
The Cost Unit Leader (COST) is responsible for collecting all cost data, performing cost-effectiveness analyzes, and providing cost estimates and cost-saving recommendations. The COST reports to the Finance Section Chief (FSC). The COST works in the Finance/Administration functional area.
Leadership Level 3, Leader of People (Develop Intent)
Prepare and Mobilize
- Ensure individual readiness.
- Obtain and assemble information and materials needed for kit.
- Gather critical information pertinent to the assignment.
- Travel to and check in at assignment.
- Obtain briefing, objectives, and intent from the incident supervisor.
Build The Team
- Assemble and validate readiness of assigned personnel and equipment.
- Coordinate with Finance/Administration Section Chief and other functional areas to obtain resources.
Supervise and Direct Work Assignments
- Establish and communicate objectives, priorities, work assignments, and performance expectations.
- Identify, analyze, and use relevant situational information to make informed decisions and to take appropriate actions.
- Ensure daily objectives and performance standards are met.
- Monitor performance and provide immediate and regular feedback to assigned personnel.
Perform Cost Unit Leader-Specific Duties
- Obtain local administrative guidelines, payment procedures, or other agency-specific requirements.
- Utilize incident time/cost system program to analyze and manipulate data and to create outputs.
- Provide information to the Incident Management Team (IMT), the incident agency, and the agency responsible for payment, as requested.
- Ensure cost management measures are in place as outlined in the NWCG Standards for Interagency Incident Business Management, PMS 902.
- Analyze incident resource cost information, including the evaluation and tracking of inefficient and uneconomical operations, and communicate information to the IMT through the Finance Section Chief.
- Track costs in accordance with established cost-share agreements.
- Verify incident resources and furnish updated cost data on a daily basis to the Planning Section for the inclusion in the Incident Status Summary, (ICS 209).
- Coordinate with incident cost centers to gather on- and off-site cost information.
Communicate and Coordinate
- Follow established processes and chain of command for collecting, producing, and distributing information.
- Coordinate with other units and sections to complete work assignments.
- Report all accidents or injuries to the incident supervisor.
- Account for the location, health, safety, and welfare of assigned personnel.
- Ensure compliance with all safety practices and procedures for yourself and those around you.
- Document incident costs according to direction, timeframes, and regulations.
- Ensure the Incident Finance Package follows the guidelines outlined in the NWCG Standards for Interagency Incident Business Management, PMS 902.
- Provide cost-saving measures identified or implemented by the IMT for the incident agency after the IMT is released and the incident is completed.
- Ensure financial documentation packages are submitted to the processing agency.
- Crew Time Report (CTR), SF-261 (Watch: How to correctly fill out a CTR).
- Coordinate an efficient transfer of position duties and complete the transition document or the closeout report for the Cost Unit at the end of the assignment.
- Complete the demobilization checkout process before being released from the incident.
- Upon demobilization, report your status to your home unit, including a reassignment or the estimated time of arrival (ETA) to your home unit.
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