Adjusting a timetable is a process that usually takes four months. At the Rhine and Lek water district, Déhora sat down with employees to draw up a new timetable in just four weeks for the crews of inland vessels sailing the Rhine and Lek rivers.
A focus on employee wishes
The employees indicated that they wanted to see a number of improvements. For example, they wanted no or as few as possible late shifts on Fridays before a free weekend. Furthermore, they preferred to have Friday off instead of Monday. In addition, Rijkswaterstaat wanted to bring the timetable in line with the timetables of the adjoining districts in order to create coverage from Nieuwegein up to the IJsselmeer and Zwolle. This would also allow different crews to take on each other’s shifts. Déhora and Rijkswaterstaat pencilled in four days in the calendar and agreed that an adjusted timetable would subsequently be drawn up. Six of the 20 employees collaborated in this endeavour. The team leader monitored coordination with the other timetables.
New working hours scheme and timetable
On the first day, the timetabling system was discussed and the employee wishes reviewed. The following two days were taken up with hashing out the details together with the employees. Thanks to the use of a Smart Board, everyone could immediately see the consequences of a change. The fourth and final day demonstrated the support this working method had garnered: the other employees had by then already approved the timetable. The result is a new working hours scheme with a single basic schedule that accommodates the requested improvements. Naturally, the new timetable was tested using the so-called timetable scan to ensure its compliance with legislation and regulations (Working Hours Act).