I just updated to 10.6 and found the optimization tool. This would be a great tool to solve some scheduling problems but I am not quite sure about the input format required....Maybe because I am not a R user?
I have created a sample with excel to solve a scheduling question as reference.
Imagine that a restaurant has the following forecast for demand (customer groups) for each hour of the day:
This data might be represented by an array variable D, where Dt is the forecasted demand for period t in number of groups of customers. (For clarity, we will use t=1 for the 11:00 a.m. hour, t=2 for the noon hour, etc.)
If each server can handle 4 customer groups per hour, how many employees will we need during each hour. This question is complicated by the fact that our employees either work part-time 4 hours per day or full-time 8 hours per day. (For simplicity we will not presently consider break times, which is an interesting problem in itself.) Imagine that full-time employees are paid $6 per hour, and part time employees are paid $8 per hour, according to union rules.
Let us define a decision variable set Ft which tells how many full-time employees will start at period t. Also, let us have a decision variable set Pt that will tell the number of part-time employees starting at period t.
Our objective function will be to minimize the total cost of labor (to have enough for demand). This is as follows (since full-time employees work 8 hours at $6 per hour and part-time employees work 4 hours at $8)
@kennethli we just posted some samples on the Predictive District. Check those out, and if you still need guidance, I bet the author @KuoL would love to help you out when she gets back from the R conference.