How To Build Your Own Work Breakdown Structure Dictionary, And What You Should Include In It.
A Work Breakdown Structure Dictionary is a complement to your WBS that provides more information about every component and activity in your project, making the project less painful to work on for everyone involved due to the common language being shared in the WBS Dictionary.
The fourth process in the Scope Management knowledge category is the Create a Work Breakdown Structure process. Following its establishment, the WBS dictionary should always be created. The purpose of the WBS dictionary will be discussed in this article.
What Is A Work Breakdown Structure Dictionary?
There are several levels to the Work Breakdown Structure process and the WBS dictionary is related to the work packages one. The work packages are located on the 3rd level of every Work Breakdown Structure and are extremely minor components of it. As a result, they must be explicitly and directly explained to all project stakeholders so that they can be fully understood despite their more intricate nature. A WBS dictionary can be used to help you explain the concept of work packages in depth.
To put it simply, having a WBS Dictionary will aid you in describing the work that must be completed for every WBS work package. Because it’s the 3rd level, each work package in the WBS is only represented by nouns or a few words, which can cause some confusion if there is no WBS Dictionary to explain the items. The relevant parties in the project should have a thorough understanding of the project scope to be able to finish it successfully, and understanding the wording being used in the work package is an integral part of that.
To recap, a step of scope management is to create a Work Breakdown Structure process, which includes a WBS Dictionary that will help you:
- Have a summary and explanation of all the tasks and actions that need to be taken for every WBS work package.
- Reduce scope creep by specifying the elements of the work package.
- Finalize the documentation for the WBS and the WBS dictionary
Why Do You Need A WBS Dictionary?
By outlining the specifics of the work package, the WBS Dictionary aims to mitigate scope creep. Because the scope of everything that has to be done inside a work package is specified within the WBS dictionary, all resources and team members will be aware of the scope, therefore helping them avoid doing superfluous, duplicate or out-of-scope work.
The Create WBS procedure yields the WBS Dictionary, which is one of the project deliverables. Every work package is linked to a WBS dictionary when the WBS is created to indicate what should be accomplished in the scope of that work package.
This Is What To Add To Your WBS Dictionary
And now that we have a definition and you know everything you can gain from having a WBS Dictionary, and why it’s important to make one as you follow the create WBS procedure, let’s hash out the details of what makes up a WBS dictionary so you can learn what you should include in yours.
Every piece of relevant and important information about the work package should be added, including the control account ID to which the work package belongs to, a work package ID, the date of update, and the accountable institution or person who will finish this work package while the project is active.
Detailed Descriptions Of Each Task
The WBS Dictionary’s Work Package Description section outlines what has to be done in complete detail. Basically, it is the scope of work that must be completed in order to finish the work package.
The acceptance Criteria section of your WBS Dictionary explains the terms and criteria under which the work package would be approved or rejected. These are usually deduced from all project specifications. For example, if a member’s login takes less than a couple of seconds, the user access mechanism work package is sure to be authorized and the work package completed. This is an example of a set of criteria for approval.
Deliverables And Goals
WBS Dictionary defines deliverables in this work stage as the smaller sections of goals and deadlines that will be created from the work package.
Any And All Assumptions
Things that are technically supposed to be true yet might end up not being as accurate are known as assumptions. This section must be filled out with all and any assumptions about the job package.
Name Your Resources
The companies or personnel who will carry out the work package activities are listed inside the Resources Assigned section of your WBS Dictionary. This field can contain the names of a department, employees, suppliers or even all of them depending on how your project is being organized.
Work Package Timeline
The duration part of your WBS Dictionary will mention the time it will take for the work package to be completed successfully from start to finish, a key part of scope management.
Detailed Schedule For Each Item On Your Work Package
The crucial points that must be passed when delivering a work package are included in the timeline objectives. Things like installation fulfillment, finalizing configurations, and customer satisfaction are examples of benchmarks for a work package.
Budget And Costs
The overall budget needed for the whole work package to be successfully finished should be allocated inside the cost area of your WBS Dictionary. The expenses of work packages are added together to determine the cost of control accounts, and the entire project budget is determined by adding the expenditures of control accounts.
Final Due Date
One of the last pieces of information you need to fill out in your WBS Dictionary is the scheduled date for the final deadline when your work package will need to be finished and delivered.
List All Interdependencies
Your work package’s precursors and descendants are listed in the Interdependencies section of your WBS Dictionary. When creating the project’s network diagram, these interrelations will become crucial. If a work package has any predecessors, you won’t be able to start the new one until the past ones are finished. In a building project, for example, you wouldn’t be able to paint the inside of the structure without having completed the main foundations, erected the frame, and built the structural wall itself first. This type of dependency should always be recorded inside your WBS dictionary.
All Accepted Details
At the end of your WBS Dictionary, you’ll add the details that have been approved by your customer once the work package is done and presented, along with the date it was accepted.