Queuing Networks for Designing Shared Services

Queuing Networks for Designing Shared Services

Hai Wang (Saint Mary's University, Canada), Yezheng Liu (Hefei University of Technology, China), Yuanchun Jiang (Hefei University of Technology, China) and Shouhong Wang (University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, USA)
Copyright: © 2014 |Pages: 6
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-5202-6.ch176
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Background

Large organizations often have many operational units. Each operational unit focuses on its core business functions, and also supports necessary non-core business functions. In order to reduce operational cost, common non-core business functions can be consolidated within the entire organization and implemented as shared services. Shared services provide common non-core business services to different operational units, and allow each unit to focus on its core business functions. Generally, information systems services, accounting and financial services, and human resource management are the designated lines of business processes for shared services.

Research has indicated that successful design of shared services requires new organizational structures (Gulati & Singh, 1998; Kakabadse & Kakabadse, 2000). Shared services drive all operational units of the organization to form a network with the nucleus of shared service centers. A shared service center provides one or more types of non-core services to operational units in a more economical and more effective way. During the design of shared service centers, business process reengineering (BPR) is often used to re-examine the business processes and the relationships between involved operational units (Ulbrich, 2006). Success of shared services has been reported in the many fields, including information systems services, accounting and financial services, and human resource management (Ulbrich, 1995).

Key Terms in this Chapter

Approximate Mean Value Analysis: Approximate algorithms that compute approximate solutions of the Mean Value Analysis algorithm with reduced computational cost.

Multi-Class Product-Form Queuing Network: A special type of queuing networks with some restrictions on the types of service centers and queues. Customers in the queuing network may be classified into multiple classes. There are algorithms for computing the performance measures of multi-class product-form queuing networks.

Shared Services: Common business functions are consolidated and shared within the organization in order to reduce operational cost and to increase information and knowledge sharing.

Shared Service Center: A service center that provides one or more types of shared services to different operational units in a more economical and more effective way.

Mean Value Analysis: A popular algorithm for computing the performance measures of multi-class product-form queuing networks.

Non-Product-Form Queuing Network: A queuing network that is not a multi-class product-form queuing network. Various types of non-product-form queuing networks can be accurately approximated by larger and more complex multi-class product-form queuing networks.

Queuing Network: A modeling technique for representing resource sharing systems, which consists of a collection of service centers that represent the resources for providing services to a collection of customers that represent tasks.

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