At the risk of alienating any animal lovers, the only way to eat an elephant, is one bite at a time. The only way to come up with a manageable project schedule is to divide the project work into manageable tasks that can be assigned, implemented and monitored. The representation of the decision of the project work into manageable tasks is called the work breakdown structure, WBS.
The WBS is a critical part of the project. It provides an overview of the entire project, sometimes in a pictorial format and a common reference for everyone involved in the project. The intuitive nature of the WBS makes it easily understandable by everyone involved in the project. Even high-level non-technical management can obtain a high-level overview of the project, by looking at the WBS.
The WBS is a tool that defines the project and includes the following:
- The tasks and sub-tasks that need to be perfumed.
- The resources that are needed to complete the tasks.
- The task organization and sequence.
- The task duration.
- The task cost.
- The task scope.