A master scheduling model with skilled and unskilled temporary workers

Atthawit Techawiboonwong, Pisal Yenradee, Sanchoy K. Das

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

38 Scopus citations


A new model called MPS-T is presented for the scheduling of temporary workers in mixed model flow lines with both skilled and unskilled workstations. We classify workers in two dimensions: (i) permanent or temporary, and (ii) skilled or unskilled. While all permanent workers are skilled, temporary workers can be either skilled or unskilled. Two workstation restrictions are modeled in the MPS-T: (i) some workstations may be limited to only skilled workers if there is a significant operational complexity, (ii) each workstation is limited to a minimum ratio of permanent to temporary workers. Such workforce models are commonly seen in labor intensive export oriented factories located in the Far East. These factories experience an order behavior that is characterized by high variance and short lead times. Distinguishing between worker types, permits management to limit their fixed workforce costs and also rapidly access a cheaper labor pool to meet demand surges. MPS-T is modeled as a mixed integer program and the key decisions are: (i) What type of temporary workers to hire or layoff in each period, (ii) the number of workers to hire or layoff in each period, (iii) the assignment of the work time of workers to the work stations, and (iv) the usage of overtime hours. A case study example to study model behavior under different parametric conditions is reported.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)798-809
Number of pages12
JournalInternational Journal of Production Economics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Oct 2006

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Business, Management and Accounting
  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Management Science and Operations Research
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


  • Flow lines
  • Master scheduling
  • Temporary workers


Dive into the research topics of 'A master scheduling model with skilled and unskilled temporary workers'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this