Interaction of Vehicle Routing and Production Planning
In just-in-time production, supply and production dates are coordinated. Thus, production, loading and delivery are closely linked. Despite this fact, however, the planning of each of the three steps is usually done separately and without direct synchronization. In many cases, route planning, which is carried out first, indirectly determines what needs to be manufactured on which day. However, this planning step often only considers vague capacity potentials and ignores other framework conditions that can guarantee a smooth production process (e.g., product mix). As a result, there are frequent disruptions during the production process, which, in turn, affect loading and delivery. Within the OptiCap research project, we combined the three planning levels for production, loading and vehicle routing in order to better harmonize production and shipping, thus achieving optimal use of capacities.