Optimizing resource leveling in construction projects

Khaled A El-Rayes, Dho Heon Jun

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Construction schedules, generated by network scheduling techniques, often cause undesirable resource fluctuations that are impractical, inefficient, and costly to implement on construction sites. This paper presents the development of two innovative resource leveling metrics to directly measure and minimize the negative impact of resource fluctuations on construction productivity and cost. The first metric quantifies the total amount of resources that need to be temporarily released during low demand periods and rehired at a later stage during high demand periods. The second measures the total number of idle and nonproductive resource days that are caused by undesirable resource fluctuations. The two new metrics are incorporated in a robust and practical optimization model that is capable of generating optimal and practical schedules that maximize the efficiency of resource utilization. An application example is analyzed to illustrate the use of the model and demonstrate its capabilities. The results of this analysis show that the present model and metrics are capable of outperforming existing metrics and eliminating undesirable resource fluctuations and resource idle time.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1172-1180
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Construction Engineering and Management
Issue number11
StatePublished - Oct 22 2009


  • Computer models
  • Construction management
  • Labor
  • Leveling
  • Optimization
  • Resource management
  • Scheduling

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Strategy and Management
  • Industrial relations
  • Building and Construction


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