A WBS is a deliverable-oriented grouping of the work involved in a project that defines the total scope of the project. A WBS is a foundation document that provides the basis for planning and managing project schedules, costs, resources, and changes.

Decomposition is subdividing project deliverables into smaller pieces.


Approaches to Developing WBSs

  • GuidelinesSome organizations, such as the DOD,provide guidelines for preparing WBSs.
  • Analogy approach: Review WBSs of similar projectsand tailor to your project.
  • Top-down approach: Start with the largest items ofthe project and break them down.
  • Bottom-up approach: Start with the specific tasks androll them up.
  • Mind-mapping approach: Write tasks in a non-linear,branching format and then create the WBS structure.