Operations Management

A department store chain is designing a layout for a new store. The store manager wants to provide as much convenience as possible for her customers. Based on historical data, the number of trips between departments per hour is given in the following closeness matrix. A block plan showing a preliminary layout is also shown.

Closeness Factors (Trips per hour)
1/O 2/S 3/H 4/T 5/A 6/E

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1. Office Supplies (O) — 40 100 50 20 10
2. Sporting Goods (S) — 100 80 60 80
3. Hardware (H) — 70 100 50
4. Toys (T) — 70 90
5. Automotive (A) — 60
6. Electronics (E) —





Customer travel between departments is restricted to the aisles shown in the block plan as dotted lines.

Dept. Pair Closeness Factor (w) Original Distance (dO)
w  dO Revision #1 Distance (d1)
w  d1
1 – 2
1 – 3
1 – 4
1 – 5
1 – 6
2 – 3
2 – 4
2 – 5
2 – 6
3 – 4
3 – 5
3 – 6
4 – 5
4 – 6
5 – 6

Complete the calculations and fill in the table above. Based on the table above answer the following questions.

a) What is the total expected weighted-distance score between Office Supplies and Hardware? (4 points)

b) What is the total weighted-distance score between Hardware and Toys? (4 points)

c) What is the total weighted-distance score for the entire store? (4 points)

d) A suggestion has been made to switch Hardware and Automotive. What would the total weighted-distance score for the entire store if these two departments were switched? (4 points)

e) Based on your calculations, would you recommend that Hardware and Automotive be switched? (4 points)

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