The Amazing WBS

Work Break Down Structure – The Keystone of Project Management.


Course No: AWBSPM01
Duration: 2 Days
Credits: 16 PDUs

Basic understanding of Project Management
Course Level

Intermediate to Advanced
Course Overview
It’s amazing how there is fire at the end of every single project, every single time, by each and every Project Manager and Project Leader. There is scientific reason whey this is so but few are aware of the perfect solution to it. This solution is known as “Work Breakdown Structure” (WBS) and this tool lets the project team identify all the work and only the work that is applicable to the project well in advance. Inability to identify all the work upfront, results in lesser resources, lesser cost estimate and hence lower budget than the project actually requires. 

The other aspect of work identification is the granularity of the work. Either too micro or too macro level of work is identified and both are very difficult to manage. Even things like a “Change” are very hard to understand and manage without a WBS. As you can see WBS is the very Foundation on which the entire project and the world of project management stands. This engagement is highly practical and hands on with real world case study thrown in for good measure and practice. 
Who should attend?
You should attend this workshop if you manage single and/or multiple projects within your organization. Members of the Project Management Office, project and resource managers, team leaders and executives will benefit from the program.
Performance Focus
The goal of the course is to equip you with the necessary knowledge, skills and techniques so you can develop an effective WBS for use in planning, executing and controlling your next project and to provide the basic tools to enhance efficient re-use of key information in future project. This would be done through a “Realistic Case study”.
What You Will Learn
  • Describe the need for a project WBS
  • Construct a WBS
  • Determine the appropriate level of detail in the WBS
  • Describe the WBS role in the project
  • Gain practical experience in the development, decomposition and use of the WBS
  • Know how the WBS supports and integrates with project requirements, risk, procurement, estimating, scheduling, and overall project execution
Training Content and Basic Outline of the course

Getting Started

  • Introductions
  • Course Structure
  • Course goals and objective


  • Key definitions
  • History of the WBS
  • Importance of the WBS
  • Overall structure
  • Terminology
  • Other breakdown structures
  • WBS tools

WBS and Requirements

  • Project scope management processes
  • Specify the project objectives
  • WBS design based on project deliverable
  • WBS decomposition process
  • The “100% rule”
  • The WBS and activity definition

WBS and Risk

  • Using risk identification to enhance the WBS
  • Risk at the project or overall requirements level
  • Risk breakdown structure or taxonomies
  • Risk management plan – risk components and work packages

WBS and Estimating

  • Use of WBS in the estimating process
  • Components and work packages
  • Sizing and algorithmic estimates
  • Estimating types and usages

WBS and Scheduling

  • Component Scheduling – high-level milestones
  • Dependencies between work packages
    • Mandatory (Hard)
    • Discretionary (Soft)
    • External
  • Work package level schedules

WBS and Execution and Control

  • Responsibility Assignment Matrix (RAM) chart used to clarify work package responsibilities
  • Earned Value Management and tracking of work performance
  • Progress reports, forecasts and corrective and preventive actions used to manage work performance