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Dynamic control of skilled and unskilled labour task assignments

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5 Author(s)
Vu Thanh Le ; Centre for Intelligent Systems Research, Deakin University, Pigdons Rd, Waurn Ponds, Victoria, Australia ; James Zhang ; Michael Johnstone ; Saeid Nahavandi
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Efficient allocation of skilled and non-skilled workers allow a company to improve productivity and usually requires an understanding of personnel capability, operating conditions and resource availability. This paper examines a labour control strategy that optimises labour skill level, utilisation, task execution time and processing error. The proposed controller manages different labour groups in a multiple work cell environment, providing real-time job assignment, as well as guiding and navigation features. These features can be used to enhance the performance of existing MRP-based or Just-In-Time production systems. A discrete event simulation-based manufacturing model has been developed to assess the performance of the labour controller. Experiments conducted for the selected production scenarios have demonstrated a productivity improvement when using the proposed control. A second experiment has shown that when a skilled labour uses the labour controller to guide them through the job, their utilisation also increases. The proposed controller also has potential application in other domains, such as minimising the shopping time at a supermarket.

Published in:

2013 IEEE/ASME International Conference on Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics

Date of Conference:

9-12 July 2013