To Pioneer or Follow?: Strategy of Entry Order

Publication Type

Book Chapter

Publication Date



In this paper, we consider a truck dock assignment problem with an operational time constraint in crossdocks where the number of trucks exceeds the number of docks available. The problem feasibility is affected by three factors: the arrival and departure time window of each truck, the operational time for cargo shipment among the docks, and the total capacity available to the crossdock. The objective is to find an optimal assignment of trucks that minimizes the operational cost of the cargo shipments and the total number of unfulfilled shipments at the same time. We combine the above two objectives into one term: the total cost, a sum of the total dock operational cost and the penalty cost for all the unfulfilled shipments. The problem is then formulated as an integer programming (IP) model. We find that as the problem size grows, the IP model size quickly expands to an extent that the ILOG CPLEX Solver can hardly manage. Therefore, two meta-heuristic approaches, Tabu Search (TS) and genetic algorithm (GA), are proposed. Computational experiments are conducted, showing that meta-heuristics, especially the Tabu search, dominate the CPLEX Solver in nearly all test cases adapted from industrial applications.



Research Areas

Strategy and Organisation


Handbook of Business Strategy






Warren, Gorham, and Lamont