Manpower Scheduling System

Technology Overview

This technology helps to automate shift scheduling and manpower allocation process to improve labour productivity. An effective manpower scheduling is crucial, yet many industrial practitioners are still executing the scheduling process manually. Manual scheduling consumes a significant amount of time. Even when the schedule has been planned, it does not necessarily guarantee the quality of the solution. On the other hand, the majority of commercial manpower scheduling software available in the market is not specifically customized according to the business unit’s unique requirements. This may cause frustration to some employers who are too much reliant on the software without understanding the underlying mechanisms behind it.   

Manpower scheduling is a process of constructing a shift schedule and allocating manpower to the shift schedule, such that customer demands are satisfied. Efficient scheduling decision is crucial as allocating manpower excessively results in excess labour cost, while allocating less manpower than required results in lost sales, dissatisfied customers, or overstretched manpower.

The system is developed based on aggregated requirements from various companies in Singapore. It is implemented as a web-based system that will help users to automatically generate shift schedules and allocate manpower resources to reduce labour cost and maximize customer service level, without violating employee’s welfare.

Technology Features & Specifications

The system consists of:

  • Web-based user interface, that allow users to input task details (schedule, skill-set requirement, manpower requirement, etc.), employee details (salary, skill-sets, availability, etc.); call the scheduling engine, and view the shift schedule, allocation, and assignment.
  • Database system, that allow scheduling system to seamlessly store and access data to be processed.
  • Scheduling engine, which an in-house developed scheduling algorithm is embedded within to ensure the results provided is close enough to the optimal solution within practical computation time. 

Key features include:

  • Shift schedule generation
  • Manpower allocation
  • Manpower assignment
  • Drag-and-drop Gantt Chart
  • Assignment locking
  • Dashboarding

Potential Applications

This technology is particularly relevant to service-related sectors, such as:

  • Logistics
  • Engineering Services
  • Aerospace Maintenance, Repair, and Operations (MRO)
  • Retail
  • Healthcare
  • Hotels & Restaurants
  • Others

Market Trends and Opportunities

Manpower shortages due to slow growth of resident labour and recent tightening of foreign labour inflows have further increase the urgency for Singapore to improve labour productivity in order to sustain its economic growth. It has been observed that Singapore’s employment growth has been mainly contributed by the service industry for the past many years. Currently, more than 70% of Singapore's gross domestic product is provided by service industry, and they also account for approximately 70% of all employment.

Customer Benefits

Some of the expected productivity gains are:

  • Reduced scheduling effort
  • Optimized use of labour
  • Increased customer service levels
  • Increased employee's welfare

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