Duty Schedule Optimization (not only) in Times of Crisis
Winterthur Bus Company (CH) transports per year over 30 million passengers with its approx. 90 vehicles. Since the first quarter of 2020, the CH, which is integrated into the Zurich Transport Authority (ZVV), has been using MENTZ’s GENiOS duty schedule optimization. This choice was a wise decision – and its timing even better – in retrospect. Only four months after GENiOS was introduced, the corona crisis kept the world firmly in its grip, which required a rapid response by the timetable and duty schedule planners in “Winti”, as the Swiss affectionately call their city.
Winterthur-born Andreas Marthaler, a project manager at MENTZ, is proud that his work and the excellent cooperation paid off so quickly for the bus company. “The crisis has hit all aspects of life significantly. I am pleased that we were able to support Winterthur Bus during this time. The company was able to quickly react to the current situation”, said Marthaler.
“We were very fortunate to have the optimization software in these times of crisis”, added Matjas Hess, duty and personnel planner at Winterthur Bus Company (CH), about the MENTZ optimizer. Within a very short amount of time, CH was able to adapt duty schedules to this unusual situation, which also needed to meet the Swiss company’s high standards of quality: optimal duties, no long breaks between shifts, not too many mixed duties with urban/rural routes, enough early duties for the roster and many duties times that have longer working hours that are popular with drivers.
Meinrad Schmid, Head of Operations at CH also expressed his satisfaction, “the corona crisis is an unusually stressful situation. During this quite particular stress test, the GENiOS duty schedule optimizer immediately proved its value. Schedule changes had to be made on short notice and deployment with reduced driver personnel became necessary. Using the optimizer, we were able to take some acute pressure off and significantly relieve our planners”.