Generalizing earlier work on staffing and routing in telephone call centers, we consider a processing network model with large server pools and doubly stochastic input flows. In this model the processing of a job may involve several distinct operations. Alternative processing modes are also allowed. Given a finite planning horizon, attention is focused on the two-level problem of capacity choice and dynamic system control. A pointwise stationary fluid model (PSFM) is used to approximate system dynamics, which allows development of practical policies with a manageable computational burden. Earlier work in more restrictive settings suggests that our method is asymptotically optimal in a parameter regime of practical interest, but this paper contains no formal limit theory. Rather, it develops a PSFM calculus that is broadly accessible, with an emphasis on modeling and practical computation.

Achal Bassamboo, J. Richard Harrison, and Assaf Zeevi
Journal Article
Publication Date
Manufacturing & Service Operations Management

Full Citation

Bassamboo, Achal, J. Richard Harrison, and Assaf Zeevi
. “Pointwise stationary fluid models for stochastic processing networks.”
Manufacturing & Service Operations Management
, (January 01, 2009):