The Work Breakdown Structure (WBS) is among the first tasks that any project manager does when preparing to start a new project.
What you need is a WBS template that can help decompose the total scope of the project, helping achieve its objectives and develop the deliverables as per the brief.
But before we get into why WBS is important, let’s define it, learn how to design one, and understand how the best WBS templates can help you get done faster and more efficiently.
What is WBS or a Work Breakdown Structure?
WBS is one of the most common and effective project management tools. It’s a graphic that assists in dividing up big projects into relatively smaller, easier-to-manage chunks that comprise the project’s goals or results that they will require to finish.
It is a deliverables-focused breakdown of projects that separates project deliverables into sub-deliverables and work packages that specify the work, timeframes, and expenses for all the tasks that must be completed. You can collaborate with colleagues by sharing, exporting, and editing them as pictures and SVGs.
It is organized hierarchically. Typically, a WBS should include three layers of decomposition. You can add a 4th or 5th level if the project is more complicated.
How Does WBS Help Project Managers in their Work?
To plan and carry out a WBS, project managers use PMS (project management software).
The planning, scheduling, and execution of a project become all the more efficient when you bring project management software into the mix. Use it in tandem with a network diagram or a Gantt chart that includes WBS tasks and levels hierarchies to enhance speed and efficiency further.
Online job management programs offer cutting-edge resources such as sheets, Kanban boards, and Gantt charts. Utilize our tool’s WBS layers to plan and collaborate with your group to complete tasks using simple task lists and Kanban boards.
Why Use a WBS in Project Management?
The first step in creating a project schedule is making a WBS. It outlines every task that must be carried out (and in what order) to accomplish the project’s goals and objectives. Using this type of project visualization, you can determine the allocation of resources and project scope for each activity.
Process knowledge and groups domains, like the following, benefit from a well-designed WBS or work breakdown structure:
- Project budgeting, project planning, and project scheduling
- Resource management, team management, risk management, and task management
A WBS also aids in avoiding typical project management problems, including missed scope, cost overrun, and deadlines.
Smaller phases or sub-projects may be part of your project’s objectives, and even these can be divided into responsibilities, work packages, and deliverables. You may handle such things and clearly understand the specifics required to complete each aspect of the project you are working on with the assistance of WBS. In simpler words, WBS acts as your road map through challenging tasks.
How to Use a WBS?
It’s critical to first determine your project scope by speaking with all team members and stakeholders before developing a task breakdown structure.
As a project manager, you must make sure that all critical deliverables and input are acquired and prioritized openly. You can use flow charts, Gantt charts, lists, or spreadsheets to display the hierarchical framework of priority and interconnectivity between the activities required to accomplish the project.
You may then allocate each job to a project team member after detailing the tasks and deliverables in the completion sequence. Distribute responsibilities and duties across the members to ensure no one person is responsible for the bulk of the overall project’s weight. To manage the project effectively, it is essential to note all the data on a sheet or template.
Ready To Try WBS Templates That Empower Your Processes?
The right templates can be your guide to all the tasks, features and aspects required to break down work structures effectively. From Gantt charts to flow charts, it consists of everything in various ways to provide you with options that suit you best.
These WBS charts can be customized depending on the urgency and complexity of the project. And you can use them every step of the way – at launch, planning, execution, control, and finally, closeout.