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Integrating load-based order release and priority dispatching

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article

Published
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>2014
<mark>Journal</mark>International Journal of Production Research
Issue number4
Volume52
Number of pages15
Pages (from-to)1059-1073
Publication statusPublished
Early online date16/09/13
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

Workload control (WLC) is a well-established production control concept for job shops that put primary emphasis on load-based order release. Recent advances in load-based order release research have led to an improved delivery performance at reduced shop floor workloads. But although order release is the primary focus of WLC research, it must be coupled with priority dispatching on the shop floor if order progress is to be regulated. Prior simulation research suggests that load-based order release methods should only be coupled with simple dispatching rules because other, more powerful rules can conflict with the functioning of the release method. Yet, recent empirical research suggests that powerful priority dispatching rules – such as due date-oriented dispatching rules – are in fact needed for a high level of delivery performance to be obtained in practice. This paper focuses on overcoming the conflict between order release and dispatching, so load-based order release can be combined with due date-oriented dispatching. Preliminary analysis reveals that part of the conflict is because existing due date-oriented dispatching rules overcompensate for schedule deviations that occur when orders are either released earlier or later than planned. Two alternative new dispatching rules based on an improved method of determining operation due dates are then developed to better account for schedule deviations and overcome the conflict with load-based order release. Further improvements in delivery performance are obtained, while the large workload reductions achieved by recently developed load-based order release methods are retained.