William Hakes- Interfaces Summary III



1)      “Using Simulation to Increase the Effectiveness in an Army Recruitment Office” Interfaces; Ofer Shrtrichman, Rami Ben-Haim and Moshe A. Pollatschek. Interfaces, Vol. 31, No. 4 (July-August). 

2)      Ofer Shrtrichman, Department of Computer Science and Applied Mathematics- Weizmann Institute of Science; Rami Ben-Haim, Israeli Defense Forces; Moshe A. Pollatschek, Department of Industrial Engineering and Management- The Technion. ofers@wisdom.weizmann.ac.il

3)      Can simulation, queuing analysis, and decision support create a more efficient means of (Army) personnel recruitment?

4)      Applied Statistical:  This article directly applies statistical techniques to a real-world case, the Israeli Army recruitment office.

5)      Service in the Israeli Army is compulsory at age 18.  Candidates for service are required to undergo a multi-stage examination, primarily for placement purposes, one year before service actually begins.  This process consists of physical, medical, and psychometric examinations.  The process, though, is terribly inefficient, not only from the standpoint of needless waiting by the candidates, but also by the dollar cost induced by such waiting times and inefficient allocation of resources.  Simulation analysis was used to replicate the processes and establish a more efficient aggregate process.  Numerous changes were implemented which dramatically increased the efficiency of the program.  Specifically, waiting times decreased by 40% and overall exam time decreased by 75%.  Moreover, due to the changes, some testing offices were closed as they became “redundant”.  The implementation costs were $3.6 million, but the initial savings were approximately $3.3 million, plus an estimated $350,000 in savings annually.

6)      The article will have appeal to practitioners as well as academics interested in the study of simulation, queuing, and decision support systems, as well as military operations and service-oriented industries.

7)      As this article integrates some practical statistical methods with an existing real-world case, I see this method of paper as one that I will replicate.