Postdoc in Technician Routing and Dispatching

Wednesday 14 Sep 22

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Are you interested in developing ground-breaking algorithms for technician routing to save driving costs and energy? At DTU Management you will have the chance to develop your optimization skills, and to work with leading experts in transportation and algorithms.

Field service technicians at TDC NET drive approximately 80,000 kilometres every day, the equivalent of circling the Earth twice. Project GREENFORCE will improve the efficiency of field service, by developing a software platform that will optimize demand management, remote resolution, and routing. The platform will decrease kilometres driven by technicians, thus decreasing cost and CO2 emissions. GREENFORCE is a partnership between DTU Management, DTU Compute, Softwarehouse Qampo, and TDC NET, Denmark’s biggest supplier of digital infrastructure.

The project will use a combination of Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML), and Operations Research (OR), which is denominated as Decision Science. The objectives are: (1) Improved predictive maintenance by using ML to forecast component lifetime, (2) Enhanced remote resolution using AI to identify problem and chat-bots to support diagnostics and self-resolution, and (3) Optimal route planning and task scheduling to reduce driving time and increase service level.

Responsibilities and qualifications
We are looking for an ambitious candidate for a PostDoc project (17 months, full-time) to focus on development of a technician routing and dispatching algorithm that can handle a much longer time horizon than currently manageable. The task is a question of matching the technician with the right skill set to solve the problem within a given timeframe, while minimizing driving distance. Planning with a long time horizon generally leads to more efficient schedules, and a higher service level for the customers. However, in order to handle the big data in real-time, it is necessary to develop fast and robust algorithms. The algorithm should also provide feedback to the prediction part and remote resolution part. Focus will be on fast prototyping approaches, and efficient solution methods. The PostDoc will be hosted at DTU Management.

  • You will be responsible for developing a fast technician routing and dispatching algorithm, enabling real-time planning of tasks over a multi-day horizon.
  • The goal is to extend technician routing to handle uncertainty, dynamic changes, and optional tasks.
  • Your solution methods could include (meta)heuristics, decomposition methods, and AI.
  • We will be using a prototyping approach with short sprints having well-defined goals
  • Results will be evaluated on real-life data, and presented at leading conferences
  • You will be part of an academic team of 4 PhD students and 1 PostDoc (with DTU Compute).
  • You will collaborate closely with decision scientists at Qampo and TDC NET, including a co-location (once a week) with the partners in either Copenhagen or Århus, depending on your preference.

Qualifications
As a formal qualification, you must hold a PhD in a relevant area

  • The successful candidate should have an PhD in operations research or algorithms/optimization.
  • The successful candidate should have experience in developing algorithms for hard combinatorial optimisation problems.
  • Some experience in routing and dispatching algorithms is an advantage.
  • You should know MIP-models and how to solve them with CPLEX / Gurobi
  • Some basic knowledge about machine learning and AI would be good, to improve collaboration with other work packages
  • Good programming skills
  • Passionate for research and pushing the scientific frontier
  • Excellent collaboration skills
  • Fluent in English, spoken as well as written

We offer
DTU is a leading technical university globally recognized for the excellence of its research, education, innovation and scientific advice. We offer a rewarding and challenging job in an international environment. We strive for academic excellence in an environment characterized by collegial respect and academic freedom tempered by responsibility.

Salary and terms of employment
The appointment will be based on the collective agreement with the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations. The allowance will be agreed upon with the relevant union. The period of employment is 17 months. Starting date as soon as possible.

You can read more about career paths at DTU here.

Further information
Further information may be obtained from Professor, David Pisinger (DTU), tel.: +45 4525 4555, email: dapi@dtu.dk.


You can read more about DTU Management at www.ms.man.dtu.dk.

If you are applying from abroad, you may find useful information on working in Denmark and at DTU at DTU – Moving to Denmark.

Application procedure
Your complete online application must be submitted no later than 6 October 2022 (Danish time). Applications must be submitted as one PDF file containing all materials to be given consideration. To apply, please open the link "Apply online", fill out the online application form, and attach all your materials in English in one PDF file. The file must include:

  • Application (cover letter)
  • CV
  • Academic Diplomas (MSc/PhD – in English)
  • List of publications
  • A research statement (2-3 pages) explaining your ideas and relevant literature

Applications received after the deadline will not be considered.

All interested candidates irrespective of age, gender, disability, race, religion or ethnic background are encouraged to apply.

DTU Management conducts excellent research in the intersection between management, technology and economics. We develop solutions in close cooperation with companies and public authorities. Our research aims at strengthening welfare, productivity and sustainability within the society. A key element is the role of technology and its interaction with industry and individuals. The department offers a wide range of courses and programs at bachelor, master and PhD level across DTU’s study programs. The department has around 200 employees, 50% coming from abroad.

Technology for people
DTU develops technology for people. With our international elite research and study programmes, we are helping to create a better world and to solve the global challenges formulated in the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals. Hans Christian Ørsted founded DTU in 1829 with a clear vision to develop and create value using science and engineering to benefit society. That vision lives on today. DTU has 13,400 students and 5,800 employees. We work in an international atmosphere and have an inclusive, evolving, and informal working environment. DTU has campuses in all parts of Denmark and in Greenland, and we collaborate with the best universities around the world.