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Quantitative methods :Staff scheduling

Currently: employees are working Monday to Friday, 8 hours daily. No-one works Saturday and Sunday.

Proposed: employees should be scheduled to work 4 days per week - 10 hour shifts - in a six day work week (closed on Sundays). Employees have two consecutive days off (excluding Sunday).

Forecasted service calls for the next several weeks are estimated to be:

Day of the Week Mon Tues Wed Thur Fri Sat Total
No. of Requests 29 25 19 30 33 40 176

Each service request is expected to average 2 hours of service time. The company wants to plan work shifts to approximately match the requests for service, but is concerned about how this will affect the utilization of personnel time, group morale and time required to perform customer service.

1. What is the minimum number of service personnel required?

2. Use a work shift heuristic procedure to develop work shift schedules for the service personnel. Work shift heuristic rule: choose 2 consecutive days with least total number of work shifts required. In the case of ties, arbitrarily select a pair and continue.

3. How much slack per week is present in the work shift schedules?

4. What ways could be used to reduce the amount of slack in your work shift schedules?

5. What factors should be considered in changes in work schedules such as the one under consideration? Which of these factors are most important? Can you suggest how one should go about making the schedule changes being considered?

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