Work-Breakdown Structure

A method for creating a hierarchical structure of work activities that provides an overview of all the necessary steps to complete a project.


The Hierarchical Structure of Work is a model that organizes work tasks and activities into different levels of complexity and abstraction. By categorizing work from operational tasks to strategic goals, it provides insights into how various functions align and contribute to overall objectives. This hierarchical approach is valuable in organizational design, process improvement, and strategic planning, where understanding the interplay of tasks, roles, and goals guides alignment and efficiency.

Suitable for

  • project managers who want to launch a new service,
  • project planning with a clear goal,
  • basis for planning costs, time, and human resources.


Project Scope

Define the project goals, objectives, and stakeholders, including user groups, and boundaries of the project.

User Research Plan

Develop a comprehensive plan to gather and analyze user data, including research methodology, timeline, and resources needed.

Recruitment Strategy

Identify the appropriate user demographics and create a detailed plan to recruit participants for the user research activities.

Ethics & Consent Forms

Create ethical guidelines and consent forms for participants to ensure data privacy and ethical research practices are maintained during the study.

Research Material Development

Prepare all necessary research materials, such as surveys, interview scripts, and usability tasks, to gather data from the user research activities.

User Data Collection

Conduct user research activities, such as interviews, surveys, and usability tests, to collect qualitative and quantitative data from participants.

Data Analysis & Synthesis

Analyze the collected data using various data analysis techniques and synthesize findings to identify patterns, trends, and insights.

Persona Development

Create user personas based on the synthesized user data to represent different user groups and their specific needs, behaviors, and motivations.

User Journey Mapping

Create detailed user journey maps to visualize the step-by-step process users go through when interacting with the product and identify pain points and opportunities for improvement.

Design Recommendations

Develop actionable design recommendations based on the synthesized user data and identified opportunities for improvement.

UX Research Report

Compile all findings, insights, and recommendations into a comprehensive UX research report to share with project stakeholders and decision-makers.

Stakeholder Presentation

Present the key findings and recommendations from the UX research report to the stakeholders and decision-makers to drive informed design decisions.

Post-Implementation Evaluation

Conduct a post-implementation evaluation to measure the impact and effectiveness of the implemented design recommendations, and identify any further areas of improvement.



Identify the main goal

Define the main goal or objective of the project that will be broken down into smaller tasks. This could be developing a new product or improving an existing one.


Break down the main goal

Divide the main goal into major sub-goals or deliverables. These will represent the higher level of the work-breakdown structure and should be broad enough to cover every aspect of the project.


Decompose sub-goals

Further break down each sub-goal or deliverable into smaller, more manageable tasks or sub-tasks. Ensure that each task is clearly defined and can be assigned to appropriate team members.


Estimate effort and duration

Determine the necessary effort and time required to complete each task. Use previous projects or industry benchmarks as reference points for accurate estimation.


Assign resources

Assign the required resources, including personnel, equipment, and budget, to each task. Make sure the resources are sufficient to complete the tasks within the estimated timeframe.


Establish dependencies

Identify the interdependencies between tasks and establish the sequence in which they should be completed. This will help define the critical path and project timeline.


Create a visual representation

Develop a visual representation of the work-breakdown structure, such as a hierarchical chart, a tree diagram or a Gantt chart. This will help all stakeholders to get a clear understanding of the project scope and structure.


Review and refine

Review the work-breakdown structure with stakeholders and team members to ensure it is accurate and comprehensive. Incorporate any feedback and make adjustments as necessary.


Monitor progress

As the project progresses, regularly check each task's status and compare it to the estimated duration and effort. Use this information to update the work-breakdown structure and make any necessary adjustments to the project plan.


Update and maintain

Continuously update and maintain the work-breakdown structure throughout the project, incorporating any changes or new tasks as they arise. This will help keep everyone informed and ensure the project stays on track.

Support the project

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