The Work Breakdown Structure (WBS), subdivides project work into smaller components. This makes it easier to manage the project. The fourth process in the Scope Management knowledge zone is to create WBS. After creating the WBS, it is essential to create a WBS dictionary. We will now explore the WBS dictionary’s purpose. You can also find a brief description of WBS Dictionary in the free online PMP training.
What is the WBS Dictionary?
There are different levels in the WBS process. The WBS dictionary is associated to the work packages level of the work breakdown structure. The third level of the WBS is the work packages. They are very small parts within the WBS. They must be explained to project stakeholders. The WBS dictionary can be used to explain these work packages in greater detail.
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The WBS Dictionary describes the work required for each WBS package. Because it is the third level, each package is represented only as nouns or with a few words in the WBS. The project stakeholders must understand the scope of the project in order to properly complete it. The WBS dictionary outlines the steps required to complete a work program.
What is the objective?
WBS Dictionary defines the details of each work package to help prevent scope creep. The WBS dictionary outlines the work packages and helps project team members understand the scope. This helps to prevent unnecessary work or work that is not part of the project scope.
WBS Dictionary is one the project documents. It is the result of the Create WBS process. Each work package is associated to a WBS dictionary after it has been created. This dictionary describes what will be done within the scope of the work package.
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What is included?
Let’s now look at a sample WBS dictionary.
As you can see, the top-level of the WBS dictionary is high-level information about a work package. Control Account ID that the work packages belongs
Work Package ID
Date of last update
Responsible Organization or Individual who will complete the work package during project.
The WBS Dictionary’s Work Package Description section will detail what needs to be done. It is the actual scope of work required to complete the work package.
The Acceptance Criteria will explain under what conditions or circumstances the work package will accept. These criteria are usually derived from the project requirements. Login mechanism work package is accepted if it takes less than 2 seconds to log in a member. This is an example of acceptance criteria.
WBS Dictionary defines deliverables under this work area as the smaller pieces of deliverable that will be produced.
Assumptions are things that are believed to be true but may not be. This area must contain any assumptions regarding the work package.
The area of resources assigned shows the individuals or organizations that will be performing the work package activities. This area can have a department, an individual, supplier, or all of them.
The WBS Dictionary’s Duration section shows the time it will take to complete and deliver a work package.
Schedule milestones are the key points that must be met when delivering a work pack. Milestones for a work package could include installation completion, configuration completion, and customer acc.