Unique Scheduling Solutions

Handling Large Data Sets

When you schedule activities using the FAST system, the Activity IDs are moved from the “Not Scheduled List” to the “Scheduled List”.  When doing this, the system updates all resources assignments and remaining availabilities.   Unscheduling reverses this process.  If you have a large number of activities, these two lists can become long.  To facilitate […]

Handling Off Hours, Weekends, Holidays

The FAST system easily handles times when you want nothing to schedule.  One straight forward way to do this is to define the original availability for all resources to exclude times like overnights, weekends, holidays, or other times when there should be no activity.  This is done in the resource editor when the resources are originally defined. […]

Customizing the Scheduling Objective

The FAST system allows you to build your own scheduling objective.  It does this by calculating several different metrics and then makes the scheduling decisions based on how you have weighted the various metrics.  Here are the details: When processing an activity to schedule, the FAST logic finds all possible combinations of resources (specified plus […]

Manual and Automated Batch Scheduling

FAST supports both manual and fully-automated batch scheduling.  If you want to schedule just one activity and choose its resources and start time yourself,  you merely select (or create) the activity and ask the system to show you all the possibilities for scheduling it.  You do this by clicking on the “Possibilities” button in the […]

Capacity Plannimg; Enforce, Track or Ignore Constraints

The FAST scheduler enforces all resource constraints as the normal default situation.  However, in some cases you may want to see what happens if a constraint is ignored.  So instead of having to erase the constraint, you can merely turn it off.  Then you can turn it back on at any time without having to re-enter data. […]

Predecessors

FAST does Predecessors!  In fact, FAST does entire precedence networks like those found in project scheduling, PERT, and CPM schedulers.  A precedence network is formed when an activity has several predecessors (activities that must be finished before it can start) and each of those predecessors has multiple predecessors and so on.  These networks are usually seen in […]

Priorities

The FAST system allows users to specify any priority value from 1 to 999.  Many other systems ignore priorities and some others mistake priorities for predecessors.  Those systems ask the user to specify a “Priority” and the system uses the number supplied as the timeline sequence, earliest to latest.  By contrast, the FAST system interprets the priority […]

Alternative Resource Selections

Suppose you were scheduling a task that required Joe Jones and one other programmer.  There are three other programmers  who are qualified.  To find the scheduling possibilities you must consider all combinations of Jones and each of the others. Now if each programmer already has multiple assignments of different lengths, finding the possible schedule times […]

Time Specification

Many (most) scheduling applications chop up the timeline into discrete intervals that last for one hour, thirty minutes, or some other per-determined length.  This means that an activity that lasts for 20 minutes cannot be modeled accurately.  If you round down, you can easily produce an unworkable schedule.  If you round up, you are obligating resources for […]

Pooled Resources

Suppose you are scheduling training sessions and each session requires a room, an instructor, and a laptop for each student.  You want to assign the rooms and instructors by name, but you don’t care which laptops are assigned to the trainees.  The laptops are a “pool” of resources. Or suppose you are scheduling an auto repair facility.  Each […]