SCHEDULING

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AXCEL.SCHEDULING function

Scheduling is a powerful task and project management optimizer which plans the task based on prerequisites tasks and budget. It also optimize the process if there is any costs associated with early or overdue implementation of a process.

Syntax

AXCEL.SCHEDULING(Tasks, [Budget], [ShowBalance])


The AXCEL.SCHEDULING function syntax has the following arguments:

Tasks Required. This is the table of Tasks with corresponding duration, precedences, implementation costs, and penalties per period for early or overdue implementations. Please note for all following examples, you should provide the rows only not the column names. The column names are for reference only. There are several ways which user can define task table explained as follows:

Duration and precedence

This is the simplest type of task input. It consists of Tasks, Duration and Precedence. The goal of this optimization is to minimize the duration of the project. Here is an example of building a house:

TasksDurationPrecedence
Walls45
Roof30Walls
Painting40Roof, Walls
Plumbing16Roof, Walls
Floor10Plumbing, Painting
Electricals35Walls, Roof, Painting
Moving in5Electricals

As shown, Precedence tasks should be defined comma separated and the names should be matched with those defined in Tasks column otherwise you get an error. In this scenario, Axcel optimizes your process to minimize the duration of the whole project, i.e. building a house in this example.

Duration and precedence with costs

This is similar to previous process with an additional columns for the cost of the task. The goal is to minimize the duration of the project with budget constraints. As a result a separate table of budget must be provided. Here is an example:

TasksDurationPrecedenceCost ($000)
Walls45100
Roof30Walls50
Painting40Roof, Walls5
Plumbing16Roof, Walls3
Floor10Plumbing, Painting8
Electricals35Walls, Roof, Painting2
Moving5Electricals1

As shown, we have additional column for cost of each task. As mentioned before, you need to provide the budget table as a separate input which consists of a list of the period of availability and amount of allocated budget. Please see Budget in the next section.

Duration and precedence with penalties

You can also define a penalty per period for tasks start early or are overdue to be considered. The goal in this scenario is to minimize the duration of the project with minimizing the penalty charges. Here is an example:

 TasksDuration Precedence  Released Earliness Cost Due Date Delay Cost
Walls45 1010  
Roof30Walls  601
Painting40Roof, Walls  308
Plumbing 16Roof, Walls  704
Floor10Plumbing, Painting    
Electricals 35Walls, Floor, Roof    
Moving5Electricals  18010

As presented above, the table consists of Tasks, Duration, Precedence and additional columns to define Released period, which mean the period that we can start the task without penalty (Earliness Cost per period) and Due Date which is the time that the task should be completed without penalty charges (Delay Cost per period).

Duration and precedence with penalties and budget constraints

The last setup is a combination of all. It means that we have both penalties and budget constraints. The goal here is to minimize the duration and penalties subject to budget constraints. Here is an example:

 TasksDuration Precedence  Released Earliness Cost
($000)
Due Date Delay Cost
($000)
Cost
($000)
Walls45 1010   100
Roof30Walls  60150
Painting40Roof, Walls  3085
Plumbing 16Roof, Walls  7043
Floor10Plumbing, Painting    8
Electricals 35Walls, Floor, Roof    2
Moving5Electricals  180101

As you can see, we have an additional column of Cost compare to previous setup. As previously noted, when you define project cost, you should provide a table of budget. Please see Budget section below.

As noted before, you should provide the rows only not the column names. The column names are for reference only.

Budget Optional. When you define task costs in your scheduling plan, you must provide a separate budget table which consists of a list of the period of availability and amount of allocated budget. Here is an example:

Period Budget
1100
1050
50100

ShowBalance Optional. Default is FALSE. If set TRUE and you have budget and task costs in your optimization, the function shows you the balance of your budget at each period instead of task planner.

when you type =AXCEL.SCHEDULING in an Excel cell, the IntelliSense guides you through required and optional (shown in [] brackets) inputs:

In the example above, we have:

=AXCEL.SCHEDULING(A2:D8, F2:G4)

Which means that our tasks are located at cells A2 to D8 and our budget is defined in a table from cell F2 to G4. We do not want to see budget balance. So, we skipped this entry for its default FALSE value. Here is the result:

In another example, we also provide penalties and the result would be like this example:

In both examples, tasks with corresponding start and end periods are provided.