Safety stock placement for serial systems under supply process uncertainty
Flexible Services and Manufacturing Journal
395 - 424
Item Usage Stats
In this study, we address safety stock positioning when demand per period is a known constant but supply is uncertain. The supply is either available or not available, while the setting is that of a periodically reviewed, serial system following a base stock policy. Each stage is allowed to operate according to the guaranteed or stochastic service model. We use a Discrete Time Markov Chain model for expressing the expected on-hand inventories for each stage, along with other terms of interest, as a function of policy parameters determined by a given service level requirement for the end product. Exact models are constructed for single-stage and two-stage systems. As the number of states for a two-stage system grows exponentially, we propose an approximation for expressing the effect of the input stage using a single parameter. A generalization for the approximation is provided for a multi-stage problem. Computational evaluations of the approximation, as well as numerical comparisons of different cases, are presented.