Document Type


Publication Date

Fall 2017


Timothy Anderson

Course Title

Operations Research

Course Number

ETM 540/640


Mathematical optimization -- Applications to shift scheduling, System analysis -- Mathematical models, Portland State University. Office of Information Technology -- Management, Operations research


A significant challenge for businesses of any size, is generating a work schedule that ensures adequate personnel coverage to ensure all aspects of the business are properly staffed, while preventing waste produced from having an excess number of employees working at a given time. The decision to manually create spreadsheets and work schedules that take into account availability, staffing requirements, and cost efficiency can become overwhelming and labor intensive. For Portland State University's Office of Information Technology (OIT), there is a significant challenge in scheduling student workers, while ensuring staffing requirements are met, student work hour restrictions are observed, and class schedules are accounted for. In order to better facilitate the scheduling and organization of work schedules for OIT, we have created a schedule optimization model, which will improve schedule generation efficiency, ensure staffing needs are met, allow for staff members to set their availability based on class schedules, and optimize the staffing costs of the OIT department. This model is intended to improve the flexibility, accuracy and efficiency in managing the OIT workforce and identify methods to reduce operating costs for the OIT department.


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