Column generation based approaches for a tour scheduling problem with a multi-skill heterogeneous workforce

Matthieu Gérard 1 François Clautiaux 2 Ruslan Sadykov 2, 3
1 DOLPHIN - Parallel Cooperative Multi-criteria Optimization
LIFL - Laboratoire d'Informatique Fondamentale de Lille, Inria Lille - Nord Europe
2 Realopt - Reformulations based algorithms for Combinatorial Optimization
LaBRI - Laboratoire Bordelais de Recherche en Informatique, IMB - Institut de Mathématiques de Bordeaux, Inria Bordeaux - Sud-Ouest
Abstract : In this paper, we address a multi-activity tour scheduling problem with time varying demand. The objective is to compute a team schedule for a fixed roster of employees in order to minimize the over-coverage and the under-coverage of different parallel activity demands along a planning horizon of one week. Numerous complicating constraints are present in our problem: all employees are different and can perform several different activities during the same day-shift, lunch breaks and pauses are flexible, demand is given for 15 minutes periods. Employees have feasibility and legality rules to be satisfied, but the objective function does not account for any quality measure associated with each individual’s schedule. More precisely, the problem mixes simultaneously days-off scheduling, shift scheduling, shift assignment, activity assignment, pause and lunch break assignment. To solve this problem, we developed four methods: a compact Mixed Integer Linear Programming model, a branch-and-price like approach with a nested dynamic program to solve heuristically the subproblems, a diving heuristic and a greedy heuristic based on our subproblem solver. The computational results, based on both real cases and instances derived from real cases, demonstrate that our methods are able to provide good quality solutions in a short computing time. Our algorithms are now embedded in a commercial software, which is already in use in a mini-mart company.
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Contributor : Ruslan Sadykov <>
Submitted on : Monday, December 19, 2016 - 9:42:19 AM
Last modification on : Thursday, May 16, 2019 - 3:54:04 PM



Matthieu Gérard, François Clautiaux, Ruslan Sadykov. Column generation based approaches for a tour scheduling problem with a multi-skill heterogeneous workforce. European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, 2016, ⟨10.1016/j.ejor.2016.01.036⟩. ⟨hal-01419205⟩



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