Class-based storage has been studied extensively and proved to be an efficient storage policy. However, few literature addressed how to cluster stuck items for class-based storage. The purpose of this paper is to develop a constrained clustering method integrated with principal component analysis (PCA) to meet the need of clustering stored items with the consideration of practical storage constraints.
In order to consider item characteristic and the associated storage restrictions, the must-link and cannot-link constraints were constructed to meet the storage requirement. The cube-per-order index (COI) which has been used for location assignment in class-based warehouse was analyzed by PCA. The proposed constrained clustering method utilizes the principal component loadings as item sub-group features to identify COI distribution of item sub-groups. The clustering results are then used for allocating storage by using the heuristic assignment model based on COI.
The clustering result showed that the proposed method was able to provide better compactness among item clusters. The simulated result also shows the new location assignment by the proposed method was able to improve the retrieval efficiency by 33 percent.
While number of items in warehouse is tremendously large, the human intervention on revealing storage constraints is going to be impossible. The developed method can be easily fit in to solve the problem no matter what the size of the data is.
The case study demonstrated an example of practical location assignment problem with constraints. This paper also sheds a light on developing a data clustering method which can be directly applied on solving the practical data analysis issues.
The authors would like to thank reviewers’ comments for improve this work. The authors also appreciate the financial support from National Science Council of Taiwan, ROC (Contract No. NSC 102-2622-E-011-009-CC3) and Hong-Yu Industrial Company. Particularly, authors thank the sharing of domain knowledge and storage requirement from Hong-Yu Industrial Company which provide practical managerial insights to contribute this research work.
Yang, C. and Nguyen, T. (2016), "Constrained clustering method for class-based storage location assignment in warehouse", Industrial Management & Data Systems, Vol. 116 No. 4, pp. 667-689. https://doi.org/10.1108/IMDS-09-2015-0361Download as .RIS
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