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Labor Scheduling, Part 2: Knowing How Many On-duty Employees to Schedule

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[Excerpt] You've figured out how many customers to expect, and now you need to decide how many employees to schedule. Alas, to do that well is more complicated than you might think. Labor scheduling constitutes a large portion of the costs under the control of front-line managers in service organizations. Scheduling too few employees can result in poor service, overworked employees, and lost sales. Scheduling too many employee hours can reduce operating margins. Moreover, one needs to schedule employees who have the necessary skills and to try to honor employees’ requests for specific work hours. The manager has to take into account customer demands, employee skills, and employee work-hour requests-not to mention government regulations, company policies, and contractual obligations-while keeping an eye on profits.

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1998-12-01

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schedules; service systems; queuing models; staffing levels

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Government Document

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Required Publisher Statement: © Cornell University. Reprinted with permission. All rights reserved.

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