PROVE THE VALUE
Faster Crew Recovery at Continental Airlines
Even before the September 11 terrorist attacks, Continental Airlines executives asked themselves how the major airline could prepare a crisis plan to respond to emergencies. Airlines face schedule disruptions, flight delays, and cancellations daily because of unexpected events, including inclement weather, aircraft mechanical problems, and crew unavailability. As a result, crews may not be in position to service their remaining scheduled flights. Airlines must reassign crews quickly to cover open flights and to return them to their original schedules in a cost-effective manner while honoring government regulations, contractual obligations, and quality-of-life requirements. Solving these problems called for operations research expertise in complex modeling and balancing multiple factors simultaneously.
The O.R. Solution
CALEB Technologies, working with Continental, developed the CrewSolver decision support system to generate globally optimal or near optimal crew recovery solutions.
After every significantly disruptive event since implementation, Continental recovered quickly and obtained overall benefits worth millions of dollars. Continental estimates that in 2001 the CrewSolver system helped it save approximately $40 million for major disruptions alone. And thanks to the system, Continental led the American airline industry in recovering operations after September 11, 2001. Since then, five airlines have implemented similar O.R.-based software for rescheduling aircraft, pilots, and flight attendants after a disruption.
Go to the complete case study >>