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Article
Publication date: 9 January 2019

Amir Hossein Hosseinian, Vahid Baradaran and Mahdi Bashiri

The purpose of this paper is to propose a new mixed-integer formulation for the time-dependent multi-skilled resource-constrained project scheduling problem (MSRCPSP/t…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to propose a new mixed-integer formulation for the time-dependent multi-skilled resource-constrained project scheduling problem (MSRCPSP/t) considering learning effect. The proposed model extends the basic form of the MSRCPSP by three concepts: workforces have different efficiencies, it is possible for workforces to improve their efficiencies by learning from more efficient workers and the availability of workforces and resource requests of activities are time-dependent. To spread dexterity from more efficient workforces to others, this study has integrated the concept of diffusion maximization in social networks into the proposed model. In this respect, the diffusion of dexterity is formulated based on the linear threshold model for a network of workforces who share common skills. The proposed model is bi-objective, aiming to minimize make-span and total costs of project, simultaneously.

Design/methodology/approach

The MSRCPSP is an non-deterministic polynomial-time hard (NP-hard) problem in the strong sense. Therefore, an improved version of the non-dominated sorting genetic algorithm II (IM-NSGA-II) is developed to optimize the make-span and total costs of project, concurrently. For the proposed algorithm, this paper has designed new genetic operators that help to spread dexterity among workforces. To validate the solutions obtained by the IM-NSGA-II, four other evolutionary algorithms – the classical NSGA-II, non-dominated ranked genetic algorithm, Pareto envelope-based selection algorithm II and strength Pareto evolutionary algorithm II – are used. All algorithms are calibrated via the Taguchi method.

Findings

Comprehensive numerical tests are conducted to evaluate the performance of the IM-NSGA-II in comparison with the other four methods in terms of convergence, diversity and computational time. The computational results reveal that the IM-NSGA-II outperforms the other methods in terms of most of the metrics. Besides, a sensitivity analysis is implemented to investigate the impact of learning on objective function values. The outputs show the significant impact of learning on objective function values.

Practical implications

The proposed model and algorithm can be used for scheduling activities of small- and large-size real-world projects.

Originality/value

Based on the previous studies reviewed in this paper, one of the research gaps is the MSRCPSP with time-dependent resource capacities and requests. Therefore, this paper proposes a multi-objective model for the MSRCPSP with time-dependent resource profiles. Besides, the evaluation of learning effect on efficiency of workforces has not been studied sufficiently in the literature. In this study, the effect of learning on efficiency of workforces has been considered. In the scarce number of proposed models with learning effect, the researchers have assumed that the efficiency of workforces increases as they spend more time on performing a skill. To the best of the authors’ knowledge, the effect of learning from more efficient co-workers has not been studied in the literature of the RCPSP. Therefore, in this research, the effect of learning from more efficient co-workers has been investigated. In addition, a modified version of the NSGA-II algorithm is developed to solve the model.

Details

Journal of Modelling in Management, vol. 14 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1746-5664

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 23 July 2019

Claretha Hughes, Lionel Robert, Kristin Frady and Adam Arroyos

Many factors may influence the training and development of middle-skill, low-skill, and disadvantaged workers. Within the United States and worldwide there are many middle…

Abstract

Many factors may influence the training and development of middle-skill, low-skill, and disadvantaged workers. Within the United States and worldwide there are many middle-skilled, low-skilled, and disadvantaged workers whom training and development professionals must consider as organizations seek to expand their workforce and increase productivity using technology. Temporary agencies employ many middle-skilled, low-skilled, and disadvantaged workers; however, there is very little information regarding how effective these agencies are in developing these workers beyond the skill level with which they enter the agency.

Details

Managing Technology and Middle- and Low-skilled Employees
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78973-077-7

Article
Publication date: 23 March 2012

Mohd Adam Suhaimi, Muhammad Rabiul Hasan, Husnayati Hussin and Asadullah Shah

The purposes of the study are to understand ICT workforce employability in Malaysia, to identify the causes that influence the growth of skill gaps in the ICT workforce

2571

Abstract

Purpose

The purposes of the study are to understand ICT workforce employability in Malaysia, to identify the causes that influence the growth of skill gaps in the ICT workforce, and to determine ways to reduce these gaps.

Design/methodology/approach

The methodology of the study comprised project reports and a literature review.

Findings

The findings show that not only Malaysia but also Australia and India are facing the challenges of demand‐supply gap as regards a quality ICT‐related workforce. The study also indicates that these countries do have similar obstacles and issues of sufficiently trained and experienced ICT graduates.

Practical implications

This study suggests that in the light of the skills demanded by industries and organizations, ICT workers could be trained through an updated course curriculum in line with the needs of industry.

Originality/value

The employability of the workforce in general has been discussed in many papers. This paper specifically discusses employability issues of the information and communication technology (ICT) workforce, and provides values to ICT educators and employers, as well as to potential ICT graduates.

Details

Campus-Wide Information Systems, vol. 29 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1065-0741

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 20 August 2018

Robert W. Robertson

The purpose of this paper is to provide an overview of the “skills gap” concerns that are increasingly prevalent in the USA and globally. In particular, the paper explores…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to provide an overview of the “skills gap” concerns that are increasingly prevalent in the USA and globally. In particular, the paper explores the current skills gap debate as a component of the American economy. This is an important issue as there is an increased economic uncertainty and global competition impacting many sectors. The paper specifically defines the current skills gap dilemma with respect to the USA and uses the Tampa, FL example of the practical implications of these concerns using recent survey and focus group data.

Design/methodology/approach

The research for this paper includes an outline of the economic development structures in place in Tampa, FL, a description of the existing mandate(s) to improve workforce training; the review of a key recent, public record report on workforce skills; and, the results of a focus group developed using key stakeholders. Initially, a public record document report titled Clarus Corporation (2013) “Hillsborough Community College: Workforce Development Scan” was reviewed to provide context and preliminary data to guide the research. In the second phase, a survey was conducted to develop a focus group of 18 key stakeholders in Hillsborough County. Nine of these stakeholders represented the education sector. These were purposefully selected from the Tampa Bay Higher Education Alliance (TBHEA) which represents approximately 30 regionally accredited academic institutions in the Tampa community (TBHEA, n.d.). In addition, another nine respondents were selected by purposeful selection representing employers who had experience with workforce training and development initiatives.

Findings

The group survey conducted for this paper confirms concerns by both employers and educators with respect to the existing and the future skill sets of employees. In particular, respondents note that basic skills such as communication and technical skills need more attention. Also, the focus group respondents confirm the importance of technical service certification. Fundamentally, economic development professionals, educators and employers need to develop and implement strategies and action plans to ensure that the skills gap be identified correctly and properly addressed. These initiatives must be developed with broad stakeholder input and these initiatives must be viewed as dynamic reflecting changing circumstances.

Research limitations/implications

This research should be viewed as exploratory in nature. The research could serve as a template to develop and track the concerns and issues of key stakeholders in the economic development process with respect to skills in the workforce on a regional or indeed a statewide basis.

Practical implications

Nations, states and local governments are more active in structuring workforce development support mechanisms and specific training opportunities to assist employees and businesses. All levels of government highlight the fact that they have skilled, competitive employees to assist in recruiting new companies to consider locating in their respective jurisdictions and in retaining companies.

Social implications

Having a clear understanding of the skills being demanded by employers as they strive to remain globally competitive is important. Local economic development officials, academicians and employers must be on the same page. Although relationships between these sectors are critical flexibility and adaptability are key to reflect changing demands.

Originality/value

The paper provides empirical evidence of the perceptions employers and educators have with respect to the skills gap issue in a fast growth jurisdiction. This jurisdiction promotes itself as having an abundant and skilled labor force. Data suggest that there are some concerns emerging from stakeholders.

Details

Higher Education, Skills and Work-Based Learning, vol. 8 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-3896

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 February 2001

Martin Falk and Katja Seim

This paper analyses the link between educational qualification structure and information technology (IT) in the service production process. The analysis is based on 1996…

1240

Abstract

This paper analyses the link between educational qualification structure and information technology (IT) in the service production process. The analysis is based on 1996 cross‐sectional data for approximately 1,000 West German firms. The empirical evidence indicates that IT capital and high‐skilled labor are complements in the production process: firms with higher IT investment output ratios employ a larger fraction of high‐skilled workers at the expense of unskilled workers. To a lesser extent, the positive IT effect carries through for workers with vocational degrees including masters and technicians. Furthermore, we find that firms’ expectations of the future size of their high‐skilled workforce are positively related to their initial IT investment output ratio. To account for censoring in the employment variables, the empirical analysis uses Powell’s Censored Least Absolute Deviations estimators as well as standard Tobit estimators.

Details

International Journal of Manpower, vol. 22 no. 1/2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-7720

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 23 July 2019

Claretha Hughes, Lionel Robert, Kristin Frady and Adam Arroyos

A majority of human resource executives report that their inability to attract and retain middle-skills talent frequently affects their firm’s performance. Middle-skills

Abstract

A majority of human resource executives report that their inability to attract and retain middle-skills talent frequently affects their firm’s performance. Middle-skills jobs, those that require more than a high school diploma, less than a four-year college degree, and pay above the national living wage, account for nearly half of labor demanded in the United States. As technology transforms the workplace, digital skills are becoming increasingly important and in higher demand. In today’s dynamic workforce, managers are facing managing and developing interdisciplinary and multilevel teams while combating a technical skills divide (lack of qualified workers), making it difficult to recruit and retain a high-technology, middle-skill-level workforce. This chapter focuses on addressing unique challenges relevant to recruitment, upskilling, and management best practices as they relate to the integration of technology and middle-skill-level workers in a highly successful workplace.

Details

Managing Technology and Middle- and Low-skilled Employees
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78973-077-7

Article
Publication date: 1 September 2000

Jonathan C. Morris

Looks at the 2000 Employment Research Unit Annual Conference held at the University of Cardiff in Wales on 6/7 September 2000. Spotlights the 76 or so presentations within…

29846

Abstract

Looks at the 2000 Employment Research Unit Annual Conference held at the University of Cardiff in Wales on 6/7 September 2000. Spotlights the 76 or so presentations within and shows that these are in many, differing, areas across management research from: retail finance; precarious jobs and decisions; methodological lessons from feminism; call centre experience and disability discrimination. These and all points east and west are covered and laid out in a simple, abstract style, including, where applicable, references, endnotes and bibliography in an easy‐to‐follow manner. Summarizes each paper and also gives conclusions where needed, in a comfortable modern format.

Details

Management Research News, vol. 23 no. 9/10/11
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0140-9174

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 3 July 2017

F. Jordan Srour, Issam Srour and M. Ghayth Lattouf

The construction industry is dynamic and often unregulated due to its complex, project-based nature. This makes the task of implementing human resource management (HRM…

1379

Abstract

Purpose

The construction industry is dynamic and often unregulated due to its complex, project-based nature. This makes the task of implementing human resource management (HRM) functions more difficult than in other economic sectors. This is particularly the case for developing countries which rely on a migrant, casual, and transient workforce. Despite offering flexibility, a transient workforce can lead to unpredictable rates of absenteeism and unsatisfactory productivity. This paper links HRM practices in the construction industry of the developing world to rates of absenteeism across three segments of the construction workforce – foremen, skilled workers, and unskilled workers. The paper aims to discuss these issues.

Design/methodology/approach

A survey targeting 60 construction sites in Beirut, Lebanon form the basis of the analysis. Within each site, measures of absenteeism for foremen, skilled, and unskilled workers were solicited along with other data on HRM onsite.

Findings

The results suggest a regression model for worker absenteeism based on tenure of work as well as the absenteeism of workers at the next hierarchical level onsite.

Originality/value

This study is among the first to show a link between the mechanisms by which construction workers are employed (contract-based foremen vs daily/weekly labourers – both skilled and unskilled) and the rate of absenteeism seen onsite. Given the role of absenteeism in construction productivity, having a good understanding of the underlying causes of absenteeism is critical to the design of mitigating policies.

Details

International Journal of Manpower, vol. 38 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-7720

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 21 September 2018

Mohsen Sadeghi-Dastaki and Abbas Afrazeh

Human resources are one of the most important and effective elements for companies. In other words, employees are a competitive advantage. This issue is more vital in the…

Abstract

Purpose

Human resources are one of the most important and effective elements for companies. In other words, employees are a competitive advantage. This issue is more vital in the supply chains and production systems, because of high need for manpower in the different specification. Therefore, manpower planning is an important, essential and complex task. The purpose of this paper is to present a manpower planning model for production departments. The authors consider workforce with individual and hierarchical skills with skill substitution in the planning. Assuming workforce demand as a factor of uncertainty, a two-stage stochastic model is proposed.

Design/methodology/approach

To solve the proposed mixed-integer model in the real-world cases and large-scale problems, a Benders’ decomposition algorithm is introduced. Some test instances are solved, with scenarios generated by Monte Carlo method. For some test instances, to find the number of suitable scenarios, the authors use the sample average approximation method and to generate scenarios, the authors use Latin hypercube sampling method.

Findings

The results show a reasonable performance in terms of both quality and solution time. Finally, the paper concludes with some analysis of the results and suggestions for further research.

Originality/value

Researchers have attracted to other uncertainty factors such as costs and products demand in the literature, and have little attention to workforce demand as an uncertainty factor. Furthermore, most of the time, researchers assume that there is no difference between the education level and skill, while they are not necessarily equivalent. Hence, this paper enters these elements into decision making.

Details

International Journal of Intelligent Computing and Cybernetics, vol. 11 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1756-378X

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 1 December 2014

Debra D. Bragg

President Obama positions community colleges as a linchpin of federal policy on education and training for citizens adversely affected by the recession. Chief among…

Abstract

Purpose

President Obama positions community colleges as a linchpin of federal policy on education and training for citizens adversely affected by the recession. Chief among recommended reforms is the notion of career pathways that enable students, especially non-traditional age adults, to participate in postsecondary education directed at employment.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper reviews the literature on career pathway reforms to describe these programs and the students who enroll in them. It also presents evidence from two third-party evaluations of federal grants supporting career pathway implementation.

Findings

Results suggest career pathway programs are spreading throughout the United States through unprecedented levels of federal funding. Adult learners are a primary target group, but more data are needed to determine on a deeper level who these students are and whether they are being well served.

Originality/value

This paper offers new information to help readers consider whether President Obama’s agenda will achieve its goals and positively impact college completion and economic recovery.

Details

The Obama Administration and Educational Reform
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78350-709-2

Keywords

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