Managing Service Systems with an Offline Waiting Option and Customer Abandonment
Many service providers offer customers the choice of either waiting in a line or going offline and returning at a dynamically determined future time. The best-known example is the FASTPASS ® system at Disneyland. To operate such a system, the service provider must make an upfront decision on how to allocate service capacity between the two lines. Then, during system operation, he must provide estimates of the waiting times for both lines to each arriving customer. The estimation of offline waiting times is complicated by the fact that some offline customers do not return for service at their appointed time. We show that when demand is large and service is fast, for any fixed-capacity allocation decision, the two-dimensional process tracking the number of customers waiting in a line and offline collapses to one dimension, and we characterize the one-dimensional limit process as a reflected diffusion with linear drift. The analytic tractability of this one-dimensional limit process allows us to solve for the capacity allocation that minimizes average cost when there are costs associated with customer abandonments and queueing. We further show that in this limit regime, a simple scheme based on Little's Law to dynamically estimate in line and offline wait times is effective.
Volume (Year): 11 (2009)
Issue (Month): 4 (November)
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: 7240 Parkway Drive, Suite 300, Hanover, MD 21076 USA|
Web page: http://www.informs.org/
More information through EDIRC
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Ali K. Parlaktürk & Sunil Kumar, 2004. "Self-Interested Routing in Queueing Networks," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 50(7), pages 949-966, July.
- Ward Whitt, 1999. "Improving Service by Informing Customers About Anticipated Delays," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 45(2), pages 192-207, February.
- Parlakturk, Ali & Kumar, Sunil, 2004. "Self-Interested Routing in Queueing Networks," Research Papers 1782r, Stanford University, Graduate School of Business.
- Walter Y. Oi, 1971. "A Disneyland Dilemma: Two-Part Tariffs for a Mickey Mouse Monopoly," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 85(1), pages 77-96.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:inm:ormsom:v:11:y:2009:i:4:p:644-656. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Mirko Janc)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.