Work Breakdown Structure (WBS): A hierarchical decomposition of the total scope of work to be carried out by the project team to accomplish the project objectives and create the required deliverables.
According to the PMBOK® Guide, “The WBS organizes and defines the total scope of the project and represents the work specified in the current approved project scope statement. The planned work is contained within the lowest level of WBS components, which are called work packages. A work package can be used to group the activities where work is scheduled and estimated, monitored, and controlled. In the context of the WBS, work refers to work products or deliverables that are the result of activity and not to the activity itself.”
Project Management Institute, A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge, (PMBOK® Guide) – Sixth Edition, Project Management Institute Inc., 2017, Page 157.
The WBS is used to create the project schedule based on the activities needed to complete the work of the project.
Based on the selected project of interest create a WBS. Among other things, be sure to:
- Identify and analyze the project deliverables
- Develop the structure and organize the WBS
- Decompose the upper WBS levels into detailed components
- Determine identification codes for the WBS components
- Verify the degree of decomposition is appropriate