The work breakdown structure (WBS) forms the basis for subsequent scheduling, estimating, and monitoring/controlling activities. It is critical, therefore, that the work breakdown structure clearly communicate the project manager’s intent with respect to how the project is to be structured.
Some of you may have had the opportunity to develop a work breakdown structure in your professional careers; some may have had the opportunity to develop a work breakdown structure in the PMAN fundamentals class. In this review assignment, you will have an opportunity to brush up on your WBS knowledge and skills. Based on the scope description provided herein:
• Create and present a work breakdown structure down to the work package level – do not decompose work packages into component activities. The WBS may be presented in either a graphical or tabular format.
• Decompose products/outcomes as far as possible without breaking individual components apart (for example, if a toilet were to be replaced, you would not decompose the toilet into a bowl, a tank, and a seat). Product/outcome decomposition should be sufficient to insure all elements of the project scope are included and non-scope elements are excluded.
• Include at least two work packages for each lowest level product/outcome. Remember that a work package applies to only one organizational entity and typically addresses only one type of work. For example, digging a ditch and paving a section of road would be two separate work packages. Each of these work packages could be further decomposed into component activities. For example, digging a ditch could be further decomposed into component activities like: (1) clearing trees and shrubs; (2) marking underground utilities; (3) renting the ditch digging machinery; etc. As noted above, do not decompose work packages into their component activities.
• Include a WBS numbering system; ensure all WBS elements are properly identified in accordance with this system.
• The WBS must clearly communicate your intent with respect to how the project is to be structured. Work packages must be clearly distinguishable from products/outcomes.
Scope Description: You’ve purchased a previously-owned home with an outdated three-piece bathroom (toilet, vanity, and shower/tub). Renovations are to include:
• New tile floor
• New tile tub/shower surround; the existing tub will be reused
• New vanity
• New mirror
• New lighting above the vanity (assume lighting circuits do not require modification)
• New towel bars
• New paint
• New shower head and faucets for the tub and vanity (assume plumbing lines do not require modification)
• There is evidence that removing the tile in the tub/shower area will damage the substrate (i.e., wall board), which will also have to be replaced.
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