My employees have a primary activity but occasionally receive random interruptions that occupy their time. What is the best way to model this situation in SIMUL8?
This is a common situation. As a simple example, consider a receptionist whose primary duties are to answer phone calls and emails. Occasionally, the receptionist must also leave to fax a document or make copies. The best way to handle this depends upon how the employee should respond when an interruption occurs. Will the employee first complete the current task, then deal with the interruption or will the employee immediately drop the primary activity (even if in the middle of a task)?
The following SIMUL8 feature is very convenient method of randomly consuming a resource's time without needing to explicitly model the arrival and process times of the interruption. If you are interested in the more detailed and complex method of modeling the interruption, please see Work Center Interruption.
The simplest approach is to use the availability feature of the resource in question. Much the same as a work center's efficiency, availability randomly creates resource absences. You can achieve this by either using the auto field by entering an availability % and average absence time, or by using the detailed option.
The detailed option allows you to enter more accurate distribution parameters for time between absences and time to return.