Cross-trained worker assignment and comparative analysis on throughput of divisional and rotating seru

Lang Wu, Felix T.S. Chan, Ben Niu, Li Li

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: Seru (cell) manufacturing system has achieved huge success in production. However, related research is limited, especially, the problem of cross-trained worker assignment. The purpose of this paper is to solve this problem for two representative seru types, divisional and rotating seru, and subsequently, compare throughput performance between the two seru types under reasonable worker-task assignment. Design/methodology/approach: For the cross-trained worker assignment problem, this research presents new models aiming at maximum throughput of seru and workload balance of workers under considering skill levels (SLs) and several practical constraints. Furthermore, factorial experiments that involve four factors, the number of tasks (NT), gap of task time, SL and gap of SL, are performed to compare throughput performance between divisional and rotating seru. Findings: First, the maximum throughput of the divisional seru is better than that of the rotating seru under suitable worker assignment. Second, in the seru which has less difference of task time, throughput performance of the rotating seru is better than the divisional seru when the NT is close to the number of assigned workers. Moreover, the influence tendency of the four factors on throughput gap between the two seru types is significant. Originality/value: This research addresses the worker-task assignment for divisional and rotating seru based on their characteristics. Several findings can help decision maker select more applicable seru type according to various production environments from the perspective of optimum throughput.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1114-1136
Number of pages23
JournalIndustrial Management and Data Systems
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 11 Jun 2018


  • Divisional seru
  • Rotating seru
  • Seru manufacturing system
  • Throughput
  • Worker assignment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Management Information Systems
  • Industrial relations
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Strategy and Management
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering

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