[Status: Backburner ⌛️] New feature - WBS

Hi,

I am missing the possibility to create, oversee and work with a WBS directly in wrike.

For me this is a very important feature to have when planning a project. I often start by making a wbs and then create my project, folders and tasks in wrike.

It would make a lot of sense if I would create my WBS directly in Wrike.

Thanks

//Oskar 

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80 comments
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Pawan Dwivedi  just a thought, and I don't know what plan you are on, but you could leverage the API's of Wrike and MS Project and build a bridge to do just that.  API's are great ways to customize any application without needing to customize the application code.  They also normally don't break when the applications update either.

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John Rakoczy a little more light on the APIs? I mean how to use them here?  Any documentation or video or examples? Need to maintain the WBS structure here.

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Just a thought... what is now a modern buzzword "WBS" is actually nothing new.  We can thank the explosion of Project Management as a career for this one.  That being said... WBS is nothing more than being organized.  Having a well thought-out plan of attack.  Finding a way to document your process in a logical and concise manner.  WBS is nothing more than the instructions, step-by-step, to complete any task.

Have you ever hung a picture on a wall?  You've used a WBS:

1) Get Hammer, 2) Get Nail, 3) Find placement, 4) Strike Nail, 5) find picture, 6) hang picture, 7) level picture

The problem is, whatever you think works as a WBS... may not be the way someone else would do it.  The rough tools to organize your work are in WRIKE already.  They may need some tweaking, but there are so many ways to organize your work in WRIKE off the shelf... if you can't figure out how to do it and need someone else to figure out how to organize your tasks... then maybe you need to give the task to someone who can organize it?

WRIKE does not need to do anything special for you to use a WBS.  Why do you want them to re-invent the wheel?  Any visual/graphical flow that you need to see your work is easily done in a simple indented list.  Or get Visio (or Excel?) and make a flowchart there from what you've already put into Wrike.

It's not rocket science, though the PMI would have you believe it is.

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Pawan Dwivedi  To use an API, you will either need to be technically adept, or have your IT department dive into the API and build your bridge.  API's are nothing more than taking data from one source and migrating it automatically into another, with no re-formatting needed.  The API does all the mapping and translation behind the scenes.  There is probably a ton of things on the web to learn about API's and how to use them, but again, this might be something for your IT department.  If you don't have one, be prepared to spend some time learning how to build and use them but it will be worth the effort in the end.

 

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John Rakoczy i don't think i'll be the first to take exception to your explanation of what a WBS is, but you appear to have confused it with simplistic task decomposition. Please don't confuse the discussion here for our Wrike product folks - there are a wide number of professional project managers who recognize the value of a WBS structure and expect it to be available in a professional grade project management tool.  For hobbyists who only deal with simple transactional work sequencing, you're right - you probably don't need a WBS.  But for those managing large projects with significant scope and complexity, the WBS is a critical dimension to support effective planning and scope management.

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The WBS helps keep things organized as noted.  Try doing a sort on your task column without any WBS numbering and then try to get them back in the original order.  Can't do that without WBS numbering or labeling.  Putting a WBS number in the task description sort of works but when you rearrange during planning or add a task in the middle that work around falls apart as you have to change all the numbering in the task description..  We dropped Wrike and went back to MS Project for this among other project management shortcomings in Wrike.

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Sidebar:  Well, I've been in IT for 35 years, long before "project managers" were an actual distinct thing.  IMO, they are also not really needed and tend to make a complete disastrous MESS of any project.  (Especially the large ones).  Back when we did it all... so yes, from my perspective I find it amusing that modern methods have over-complicated this thing called "work" that humans have been doing for thousands of years.  It all falls down to organizational ability, and what tools you choose to use to do that. 

I don't care if you use a chalkboard (those still work), or a spreadsheet, or paper and pencil lists, or fancy new WBS software.  The point is you are using whatever tool makes sense to you, is comfortable to you, and that works for you.

Screaming at Wrike to create a WBS view, when there is already other software out there just for that, is a waste of resources.  Use the Wrike API and go to your WBS software.  If your WBS software doesn't have an API... then hey, Wrike is way ahead of your other fancy WBS software...

 

So back to Wrike and WBS... if one doesn't understand the concept of using WRIKE to build a project and tasks, then EXPORT it via the API into a WBS software so it can build pretty flowcharts and visual aides... then one really needs to re-think one's career.

There are far more other useful features that will enhance Wrike than building an entire section for creating WBS pictures.

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Project management and project managers go back to well before World War II.  The advent of WBS approaches began just after World War II as countries began to rebuild and previous techniques were improved upon.  A WBS is a tool to improve efficiency and organization just like the pen and paper except that it is easier and quicker to adapt to changes in the project.  That said, if Wrike can't keep up with the competition, then there are competitive opportunities out there for those that need them..  The community here is trying to help Wrike improve its product for use in the industries it serves and WBS is an important part of that.  By the way, it is a requirement in structured planning on government projects.  I have 50 years experience in all aspect of engineering, IT, manufacturing and quality systems.  I have been doing project management all my life and using "numbered" lists (WBS) all that time.

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Meh.  That argument is moot because technically we've had "project managers" since the freemasons, pyramids, the great wall of China, going all the way back to Sumerian times.  It's the modern equivalent that tries to validate the role of "project manager" as a legitimate career and needing "certifications".  WBS software is a new gimmick now also.  A crutch for those who can't cook for themselves ;).  Is the requirement to use certified "WBS" solutions why big government projects are always wasting taxpayer money, being over-budget, and over-managed?  If I had 50 years of work experience and still had to work...

And you made my point precisely:  "I have been doing project management all my life and using "numbered" lists (WBS) all that time".   All modern "WBS" is... is numbered lists.  This is exactly what you can do with Wrike.  So you just confirmed they don't need to add superfluous flow-generating plugins to their sleek and responsive product.  But then again, isn't it in the best interest of big government to bog things down, fill them with red tape, and make them overly complicated?

Respectfully, It's my opinion that Wrike is a product that knows what it wants to be, and that is definitely not another glorified WBS software app.  If you aren't smart enough to use an API to bridge it to your existing solution... then you shouldn't be an engineer, IT, manufacturing and quality system worker.  I'm entitled to voice my opinion that Wrike shouldn't be wasting their money on this endevor.

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Guys (John Rakoczy and Larry Davidson): Kindly do not get into a argument about what is right or what is wrong here. Wrike is no individuals property and similarly Project Management is not done in one way only. Every one has a different approach and different way of managing things, which one is right or wrong, no one can decide (or should argue).

The requirement of WBS was given on similar lines to what we have in every aspect of life, whether its a House (One House  > Many Rooms > Each Room with Many Almira's etc), or our Computers (C Drive > Users > User Name > Desktop/Documents .....) or our Addresses (Country Name, Pin Code/City Name, Street & then House no.). Grouping (Logical or Physical) is always beneficial and if someone says its not required, I would agree to that, but if someone says its not beneficial at all, Sorry, I do not agree to that statement and its my prerogative or decision to not agree to that. It does not make me right or the other person wrong. Its my choice, liking and my way of managing projects.

This is my last post on this topic and I would expect people to respect that and close this taking sides immediately. We need all school of thoughts and not just one.

Thanks.

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Anyway, you are right that you are entitled to your opinion but please don't belittle their views, experience, and needs of others and don't tell them they aren't smart because they express their opinions.

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Ditto and back at you.  (Btw my company eliminated all "project management" positions 3 years ago and (gasp)... we're just fine.  Even better actually.  Just saying.)

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Please add the WBS feature to the product. Thank you!

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I experimented and created an umbrella project, which contains 6 main sub-projects (i.e. stages/divisions) within, and within each subproject are many folders, which also contain subfolders, tasks and sub-tasks.  Some sub-projects also have sub/sub-projects within them.  Each project is tagged with a unique space for the department responsible, and the main umbrella (and all sub-items) in an administrative space.  It is a massive, complicated layout with over 100 distinct tasks in it, and I successfully made it into a blueprint.  Depending on  the space you are in, you only see the portion of the project that applies to you.  So... yes, you can do WBS within Wrike, just not like MS Project would have you do it.  Why people who have used that tool forever expect other software to do it exactly the same way is beyond me... are they complaining because they don't want to pay for MS Project and expect less-expensive software to do the same thing?  Speak to your customer success coach and get some help on how to structure and build complex, multi-layer, multi-task, multi-folder projects.  All the tools to do WBS are in Wrike exactly as it is now, you just have to learn how to construct your project within Wrike, how it needs to be done in Wrike.  The concept of using traditional auto-numbered WBS items is NOT compatible with Wrike.  If you want to work that way, MS Project (with all its limitations) is your winner.  Or maybe build your project using the table view in Wrike.  I have a power-user who created in-depth WBS-style project tables so even without auto-renumbering it still can be done.   If you want complete flexibility, with the power of multi-tagging/multi-referential integrity and all the other agile planning that Wrike offers, and the ability to instantly translate any gigantic project into a list view, table view, gantt chart, etc... Wrike is the winner hands down.

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Please give us a status update on this feature. community team

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Hey Fabian Huck! We don't currently have one, but we'll share as soon as we do. For now, this suggestion isn't on the short-term roadmap. 

Lisa Community Team at Wrike Wrike Product Manager Become a Wrike expert with Wrike Discover

Lisa Wrike Team member Become a Wrike expert with Wrike Discover

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Lisa Thank you for the fast response. I hope that you will consider this feature again. Since Wrike is perfect for business projects an fast and easy reporting of underlying structure would help a lot. As I am in restricted IT environment I cannot rely on third party and the api.

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Thanks for getting back to me Fabian Huck! Definitely, we'll continue to keep this suggestion on the team's radar. 

Lisa Community Team at Wrike Wrike Product Manager Become a Wrike expert with Wrike Discover

Lisa Wrike Team member Become a Wrike expert with Wrike Discover

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Gosh this was a fun thread to read through!  I'd like to add my vote to the 'WBS Please' camp .. and wandering through the various other posts - could we combine all the 'autonumbering' type requests into one?  I suspect there are many more votes for an auto-numbering / WBS feature in a consolidated view.

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Malcolm McDonald Thank you for reaching out and supporting this suggestion!

Unfortunately, we can't technically merge threads on the Community, but please be assured all of the feedback gets to the Product team. 

Lisa Community Team at Wrike Wrike Product Manager Become a Wrike expert with Wrike Discover

Lisa Wrike Team member Become a Wrike expert with Wrike Discover

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