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Difference between project schedule and project WBS

What is the difference between a project schedule and the WBS? Aren't they more or less the same thing? If there is a difference, then is that difference subtle or are these two completely unrelated to each other?
asked 4 years ago by anonymous edited 4 years ago by me

1 Answer

The project schedule and the WBS are both part of the project plan, but they are different things. The WBS is a hierarchical view of the work to be done - it contains different levels of work, and at the leaves it consists of work packages (here's a sample WBS in a construction project: http://www.projectmanagementquestions.com/6122/sample-work-breakdown-structure-for-construction-project ).

Usually, the WBS is developed first, and then the project schedule is developed based on the WBS as each task in the project schedule is actually a work package in the WBS (read more about work packages here: http://www.projectmanagementquestions.com/2608/work-package-example ). As the project progresses and change requests are "accepted", the project manager should update his project schedule and his WBS accordingly (note that rare are those project managers who actually go back to the WBS and update it).
answered 4 years ago by MaplePM (46,940 points)

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