Report And Excel Modelling

1 General Restriction
Visual Basic for Application (VBA) code should NOT be used for solving the problem.
2 BackgroundThe Students’ Union Shop is trying to work out how many cashiers it needs to employ inorder to provide an adequate service level. Customers at the shop line up in a single queueand are called forward to pay for their purchases when a till becomes free. To help determinethe busy times of the day, the shop has recorded the number of customers arriving at the tillsin each 5-minute interval during the shop’s opening hours, from 8am until 6pm (N.B. thisis the number who actually make a purchase and does not include customers who are justbrowsing). Records for a period of 5 weeks are available. All the data were collected duringterm time.The shop usually functions with just three cashiers but it has the capacity to support up to6. An extra cashier costs £20 an hour. The shop is open for approximately 50 weeks eachyear. The management has also collected data about the time it takes for cashiers to takepayment. These data come from term time and 1000 records are available. Management areconcerned that customers wishing to buy food, in particular, may be going to other outletswithin the university such as the Big Ears Sandwich Shop or the Noddy Bar. Management arealso concerned about the turnover of their staff and would like to reduce their stress and alsostop them getting bored. They would be interested to hear about any innovative operatingstrategies for doing this.You have been employed as a consultant for the Students’ Union Shop and should• Report on their current business, pointing out any existing problems;• Suggest improvements to their current strategies;• Provide them with an efficient tool for easily evaluating their current performance usingthe data provided or new data in a similar format.3 DataThe data on customer arrivals and cashiers’ service times are available on the module siteunder Assignment, Business Analytics.
4 What You Should Produce4.1 Main ReportYour report should review the current situation of the Students’ Union Shop queueing systemand suggest ways of improving the service level. You must give a convincing argument tosupport the improvements you are suggesting, e.g. by showing the cost-benefit of adding anextra cashier in terms of staff utilisation and customer waiting time.4.2 Technical Report and Spreadsheet ModelProduce a multi-server queueing model using Excel, which could be used by the Students’Union Shop management team for evaluation of their performance using the data providedor any new data that becomes available in a similar format. The model should be supportedby technical documentation, which should give details of the analysis method used, include adescription of how it was implemented in a spreadsheet and a brief description of how to usethe spreadsheet.If there is any further information you believe to be essential, make a realisticassumption and explain clearly what you have done.4.3 Length of ReportsThe Students’ Union Shop management team are very busy and so value concise reports. Eachreport should be no more than 10 pages and the total number of pages should not exceed 15.Marking:Note that this assignment is deliberately open-ended and initiative will be rewarded. Theassignment will be marked out of 100, with the marks allocated as follows:• 35 marks are available for the main report, broken down as follows:– Clarity (15 marks)– Accuracy (10 marks)– Technical content (10 marks)• 65 marks are available for the technical report and spreadsheet, broken down as follows:– Report (technical content and documentation) (20 marks)– Usability, data input validation (15 marks)– Functionality (20 marks)– Initiative/creativity (10 marks)

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