Work Breakdown Structure - Essay Example

“Failing to plan is planning to fail,” goes an old saying. Whereas the benefits of planning vary from circumstance to circumstance, they are assured. The detail and extent of planning vary from project to project depending on the size and timeline. A small project requires a relatively detailed plan as compared to a big one. Similarly, a project with a fixed schedule needs a comprehensive plan to cut on time wastage. Each minute should be accounted for and utilized to the maximum potential. The WBS (Work Breakdown Structure) is n useful planning tool that has been adopted and used by many organizations and with great success (Haugan, 2002). This paper is going to explore a high-level Work Breakdown Structure (WBS) required for identifying, procuring, implementing and maintaining an informatics system at Hebrew Home of Greater Washington Rockville MD.

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To come up with the best informatics system, the following Work Breakdown Structure should be followed. Starting from WBS Level 1 which is the object of project attention, EHR, its importance in the hospital setting will be evaluated. Why does the organization need an informatics system? What are the advantages of an EHR? What are its limitations and shortcomings? How can they be fixed? The project manager will oversee the process of understanding the EHR and its need in the organization. At this point, he/she liaises with other departments by incorporating departmental heads such as Human Resource, Information Technologist, and Finance Manager. 

Their roles in identifying and procuring an informatics system are imperative. The Human Resource manager has to understand the effect that the system will have on the employees. In case any prior training or orientation is needed, it should be made known to the Human Resource so that he/she can make all the necessary arrangements in the name of time, orientating team, equipment and all oversee all other protocols.

On the second WBS level, the following matters will be discussed: 

1.    Identification requirements.

2.    Procurement

3.    Implementation

4.    Maintenance (Miller, 2009).

Concerning identification requirements, the informatics systems had to be in line with hospital requirements. Hebrew Home of Greater Washington Rockville MD is a very busy facility punctuated with patient overload and emergencies. In selecting a good informatics system, detail should be paid to speed. A system that frequently lags and buffers before responding to the prompts and commands it has been given is not a suitable option. Medical decisions, especially in emergency situations, are made in split seconds. Clinical history and personal details are crucial in the making of such decisions. Therefore, an efficient informatics is one that can access these details in time. About procurement of the software, the purchasing price and maintenance expenses need be evaluated. The finance department should be consulted before making such a decision to communicate their budget. The informatics system should not be too expensive to buy and maintain as it will put a stress on the organization’s budget and running it may prove to be impossible. 

When selecting an EHR, attention should be paid to presentation, compatibility, and user friendliness. These three factors are to see to the smooth use of the system by the staff. A standard informatics system should be relatively easy to use, clear presentation and compatible with the hospital computer’s hardware and software. The system should also assure privacy, protection, and confidentiality of the patients’ information. There should be comprehensive maintenance plans for the hospital system and emergencies numbers in case of a breakdown (Norman, Brotherton, & Fried, 2008).  


Haugan, G. (2002). Effective work breakdown structures (1st ed., pp. 8-10). Vienna, Va.: Management Concepts.

Miller, D. (2009). Building a project work breakdown structure (1st ed., p. 21). Boca Raton: CRC Press.

Norman, E., Brotherton, S., & Fried, R. (2008). Work breakdown structures (1st ed., p. 15). Hoboken, N.J.: John Wiley & Sons.