Title: Characteristics and classification of the annualised working hours planning problems

Authors: Albert Corominas, Amaia Lusa, Rafael Pastor

Addresses: IOC Research Institute/Engineering School (ETSEIB), Universitat Politecnica de Catalunya, Av. Diagonal 647, 11th floor, 08028 Barcelona, Spain. ' IOC Research Institute/Engineering School (ETSEIB), Universitat Politecnica de Catalunya, Av. Diagonal 647, 11th floor, 08028 Barcelona, Spain. ' IOC Research Institute/Engineering School (ETSEIB), Universitat Politecnica de Catalunya, Av. Diagonal 647, 11th floor, 08028 Barcelona, Spain

Abstract: Annualising working hours (i.e., the possibility of irregularly distributing the total amount of the employees working hours throughout the year) is one of the means to face the seasonal nature of the demand. Annualising working hours provides much flexibility to the production system (which is one of the main principles of lean production), so the company is allowed to plan the staff working time more efficiently. However, irregular working weeks implies a worsening of the working conditions that could be compensated by reducing the workers| annual working time. On the other hand, conditions are provided in order to avoid an excessive workers| overburden in long periods of strong demand. This paper introduces Annualised Hours (AH) as a means to achieve production flexibility and proposes a classification scheme of the annualised working hours planning problems that arise in services and in manufacturing, as well as an approach for solving them by using mixed and integer linear programming and assessing the benefits of introducing AH.

Keywords: annualised hours; production flexibility; lean production; manpower planning; service industry; integer programming; working hours.

DOI: 10.1504/IJSTM.2004.006276

International Journal of Services Technology and Management, 2004 Vol.5 No.5/6, pp.435 - 447

Available online: 13 Feb 2005 *

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