The Product Breakdown Structure (PBS) identifies and defines all the products (deliverables) that the project has to produce. The product breakdown structure will show the scope broken down in a hierarchical manner and at its lowest level each product (deliverable) will be identified. It is an effective tool that details the physical components of a particular product or system under consideration. The structure serves to reduce a complex project, or product into manageable components. As a result, teams can obtain a clear understanding of a product, its components and what is required to provide those components.
EXAMPLE OF A PRODUCT BREAKDOWN STRUCTURE (PBS)
Although the PBS is created at the primary stages of a project, it is important that it is reviewed and revised at each stage of the project. The PBS can then be adjusted accordingly. When creating a PBS use the following guidelines:
- The top level represents the final product/project
- Sub-deliverables contain sub components of the final product
- Identify product components through group collaboration
- Product descriptions can be a useful component of the PBS