Moving Toward an Integrated Decision Support System for Manpower Planning at Continental Airlines: Optimization of Pilot Training Assignments

  • Gang Yu
  • Stacy Dugan
  • Mike Argüello
Part of the Applied Optimization book series (APOP, volume 16)


Manpower planning and deployment is one of the most important and challenging issues faced by management in today’s industry. This is particularly true in technology-driven industries such as the airline industry. Optimal long-term planning and daily management of crew resources are critical to the operational success of airlines. Due to the complexities associated with generating staffing plans which comply with business requirements and the multitude of data processing necessary to determine compliance with revenue-enhancing business opportunities, the application of an integrated decision support system is paramount to attain optimal operational and financial performance. In this paper, we discuss an integrated decision support system for manpower planning, and in particular, we layout a mathematical framework for a pilot training assignment module. A prototype based on heuristic solutions of this model has demonstrated over $6 million in annual savings for Continental Airlines due to better pilot training assignments alone. Based on a conservative estimate, an integrated DSS will save Continental over $10 million annually.


Business Plan Destination Position Limit Version Training Schedule Flight Attendant 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gang Yu
    • 1
  • Stacy Dugan
    • 2
  • Mike Argüello
    • 2
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Management Science and Information Systems and Center for Management of Operations and LogisticsThe University of Texas at AustinAustinUSA
  2. 2.CALEB Technologies Corp.AustinUSA
  3. 3.Center for Management of Operations and LogisticsThe University of Texas at AustinAustinUSA

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