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In this paper, an effective artificial bee colony (ABC) algorithm is proposed for solving the flexible job shop scheduling problems. The total flow time criterion was considered. In the proposed algorithm, tabu search (TS) heuristic is introduced to perform local search for employed bee, onlookers, and scout bees. Meanwhile, an external Pareto archive set is employed to record enough non-dominated solutions for the problem considered. Experimental results on five well-known benchmarks show the efficiency of the proposed hybrid algorithm. It is concluded that the proposed algorithm is superior to the very recent algorithms in term of both search quality and computational efficiency.