Saturday, July 4, 2009

Word Breakdown Structure

work breakdown structure (WBS) in project management and systems engineering, is a tool used to define and group a project's discrete work elements (or tasks) in a way that helps organize and define the total work scope of the project.

A work breakdown structure element may be a product, data, a service, or any combination. A WBS also provides the necessary framework for detailed cost estimating and control along with providing guidance for schedule development and control. Additionally the WBS is a dynamic tool and can be revised and updated as needed by the project manager.

The Work Breakdown Structure is a tree structure, which shows a subdivision of effort required to achieve an objective; for example a program, project, and contract. In a project or contract, the WBS is developed by starting with :

  • the end objective and
  • successively subdividing it into manageable components
  • in terms of size, duration, and responsibility (e.g., systems, subsystems, components, tasks, subtasks, and work packages)
  • which include all steps necessary to achieve the objective.


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