Archived Autofill List Separation Algorithm?

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Hey guys! This is sort of a specific technical question concerning the autofill lists you can print out before pulling and hand out to backroom team members.

I'm not sure if every store does this, but at my store, the backroom team lead pulls up the DC executive overview in Workload Planning Tools to input the number of backroom team members pulling the morning autofill everyday. When the autofill data finishes compiling itself, she types in the number of backroom tm's and updates a graph on estimated pull and backstock time. When it's done this way, the autofill batches get grouped for each backroom tm by pull time, and each list is listed under the Autofill Overview in WPT. For example, if the system estimates 5 hours of autofill and there are 5 backroom tm's pulling, the system will create a list for each tm that has an estimated 1 hour of pull time.

Now the way the system divides the batches seems to be pretty random, taking each backroom tm to almost every section of the backroom to pull a seemingly random list of batches. This is understandable, since the system doesn't know the setup of every store's backroom to create effective lists. In a way, the system tries to make it fair for the backroom tm's by grouping the batches evenly by pull time.

My main question: what is the algorithm the system uses to divide the autofill batches into these lists?

How basic or complicated is this algorithm? What type of logic is followed for this algorithm? Is there a way to tweak this algorithm? Does your store divide the autofill batches into lists?
 

sigma7

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At my store, people pull the same areas every day. One person starts with the freezer and cooler and then moves to dry grocery, one starts in softlines, one starts in E&E and cosmetics and then pushes electronics, one starts on HBA/pets/paper, and another starts on decorative home/seasonal. They don't use WPT except to print off the autofills monitor and the caf monitor. Not used so much for workload planning.
 
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Same here we pull and go. I will tell the backroom how big pulls are but would never show the list of pulls. There are lazy people that will go for the small pulls if they know what they are. My team start at the 4 corners of the stockroom, 1 on fdc side and work their way to the middle. Stockroom is divided by blocks on the floor so they can pull by the block and take it out to the block to be worked 1 time instead of numerous trips.
 

Unreturnable

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"What type of logic is followed for this algorithm?" Target does not use logic, it uses an alternate method of evaluating problems. Sometimes I flip a coin at Target and it lands on the ceiling and I just shrug and say, "Yep, that's Target for ya."

@anonymousflowmember sounds right; whoever is following that routine is off their rocker. Any store I've heard of uses the pull times to evaluate how long the batches will be, then organizes who is pulling what and in what order based on what is most reasonable for that store or what their process is.

PS Sorry we couldn't give you a good answer, I know I've asked some similar questions when I was really curious how one process or another worked only to be shot down, but I've honestly never heard of that part of the system being used before. If WPT breaks down a list of pull it's probably just trying to give each TM an even portion of the pull times, based on zero logic. That's how pull times are determined, a basic formula based on zero logic. If my two items are stored ten miles apart at my store, and yours are in the same waco at your store, we both get assigned the same expected pull time by the system and I'll probably miss mine.
 
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I think this question went over EVERYONES head. I have thought the same thing not with your problem but the algorithm used for red cards metrics, stores with high vol compared to low vol stores. It looks like they didn't want to get store specific so they tried to make a one solution fix to many different problems
 

Formina Sage

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At my store, people pull the same areas every day. One person starts with the freezer and cooler and then moves to dry grocery, one starts in softlines, one starts in E&E and cosmetics and then pushes electronics, one starts on HBA/pets/paper, and another starts on decorative home/seasonal. They don't use WPT except to print off the autofills monitor and the caf monitor. Not used so much for workload planning.
pretty much this. my team always owned and even got a little defensive of "their" areas.
 
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My TL used this to track performance. Every BR TM had to beat the goal time on their autofill list by 15 min.
 

SFSFun

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Is it maybe doing a combination of alphabetically and by pull time? I've never seen that report before so it might help to see an example to try and find the pattern.

I think the better question is why is it being done that way in the first place? It seems like it would be an enormous waste of time and resources to generate that report and then have TMs crisscrossing the backroom at random. Not to mention the hassle of combining small pulls if different TMs are pulling for similar fillgroups.

If there's 5 TMs pulling a 5 hour autofill, it will still get divided up evenly if everyone keeps pulling batches until it's done.
 
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Is it maybe doing a combination of alphabetically and by pull time? I've never seen that report before so it might help to see an example to try and find the pattern.

I think the better question is why is it being done that way in the first place? It seems like it would be an enormous waste of time and resources to generate that report and then have TMs crisscrossing the backroom at random. Not to mention the hassle of combining small pulls if different TMs are pulling for similar fillgroups.

If there's 5 TMs pulling a 5 hour autofill, it will still get divided up evenly if everyone keeps pulling batches until it's done.
Assuming every TM is as good as the next:D

Our store people pull the same fill groups, we also tend to backstock the same filegroups[as much as one can] gives a sense of reasonability and pride(at least according to the kool-aid the TL is spouting), we skip the steel and just walkie over to our full time steel/bulk person to pull those instead of wasting time going over there.
 

60SecondsRemaining

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The algorithm simply splits the pulls into even times. It's not very complicated.

Following it will cause your pulls to take ages, because you'll spend a ton of time walking and wasting time.

There's only one right way to do autofills, and thats every backroom, pog, and backroom certified tm comes and pulls them. It takes 15-20 minutes, and ultimately saves you a ton a time.
 
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