Implementation of 3-Dimensional Work Breakdown Structure in Engineering Design


By Yosep Asro Wain, CCP

Jakarta, Indonesia



Work breakdown structure (WBS) is a hierarchical decomposition of the scope of work, with the lowest element is a word package, which can be scheduled, estimated, monitored and controlled. WBS is important matter in planning a project.

There are many work breakdown structures i.e. product based work breakdown structure (PBS), activity based work breakdown structure (ABS), zone based work breakdown structure (ZBS), functional based work breakdown structure (FBS), etc. To mix these structures, it is developed 3-dimension of work breakdown structure (3D-WBS), which could be represented by one cube, with three sides.

In a project, engineering design is activities to produce deliverables in the form of engineering documents, which will be used as the basis for project implementation. Engineering design activities are carried out throughout phase of the project. So that, engineering design has product dimension that contains deliverables, and activity dimension which is phase of the project.

This paper describes implementation of 3-D WBS in engineering design. The 3D-WBS of engineering design using deliverables as PBS side, project phase as ABS side and project area as ZBS side.

Keywords: Work Breakdown Structure (WBS), 3-Dimension Work Breakdown Structure (3-D WBS), Engineering Design, Project Phase.

  1. Introduction

Project objectives and the scope of work form a basis of a project. Project objectives, that address technical, schedule and cost aspects of the project, are the key parameters that must be achieved for the project to be considered successful. While scope of work is the written definition of the project’s technical parameter, that can be included technical specification, statement of work, project plan, and combinations of document.

An effective project management system uses project objectives and scope of work as the foundation of the planning process. Conversion of the project objectives and scope of work into logical and manageable units of work constitutes the work definition process. The work definition process consists of 3 steps, namely: 1) creation of technical statement of work; 2) developing of work breakdown structure (WBS); and 3) preparation of WBS dictionary.


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About the Author

Yosep Asro Wain

Jakarta, Indonesia



Yosep Asro Wain
is a professional in oil and gas, especially in refinery fields with 20 years experiences. The most of his job are in the project management field, namely project engineering design, project budgeting, project cost estimating, project cost control, project scheduling and contract engineering. He is currently a cost engineering specialist at Engineering Center, Refinery Directorate of Pertamina. Yosep holds a bachelor degree in Electrical Engineering (in Control Engineering field) from Bandung Institute of Technology (ITB), and is a Certified Cost Professional (CCP-AACEI). He is also a senior process control and instrumentation engineer. He lives in Jakarta, Indonesia and can be contacted at [email protected].