ISyE Spring 2019 Senior Design Features a Triple-winning Team

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This semester, one exceptionally strong Senior Design team from the H. Milton Stewart School of Industrial and Systems Engineering (ISyE) – “Cisgocean” – won both the spring 2019 Capstone Expo ISyE Judges’ Award and the ISyE Best of Senior Design competition. This same team went on to win the Outstanding Capstone Award from among 15 schools at the annual meeting of the Institute of Industrial and Systems Engineers in Orlando, Florida.

Twenty-three other ISyE teams also completed Capstone projects with real-world impact. In addition to Cisgocean, three finalists teams – working with the Emory Clinic’s Heart & Vascular Center, MARTA, and UPS – were selected for the ISyE Best of Senior Design. “The finalist projects were selected because they stood out in terms of scope/challenge, methodology, and potential impact,” explained Director of Professional Practice and Senior Design coordinator Dima Nazzal.

For their project, Cisgocean worked with Cisco’s Global Logistics and Central Manufacturing teams to reduce transportation costs of shipping products between contract manufacturers in Asia and direct fulfillment centers in the Americas. Their proposed design revolved around increasing ocean utilization while maintaining service level constraints. This was achieved by automating Cisco’s current shipping mode assignment process, building a shipment scheduling tool to provide an optimal mode split (ocean vs. air) for its product portfolio and designing an interactive graphical user interface for project managers and supply chain planners to use to plan intercontinental shipments.

The value of this project to Cisco is estimated at $10 million per year across the highest volume lane and a reduction in global carbon footprint by 16 percent. Cisco has recognized the value and has not only conveyed the mode shift opportunity to over 10 product families but has also decided to set mode split targets for fiscal year 2020 based on the results.

“Using sophisticated optimization theory, including a bin-packing heuristic for palletization of goods and a multi-objective integer programming formulation, Team Cisgocean has given Cisco a user-friendly shipment planning and scheduling tool that can be immediately implemented on its current network and is easily adaptable to any future changes in the network and/or product portfolio,” said Cisgocean’s faculty advisor, ISyE Director of Student Services Dawn Strickland. “Though the team is comprised of extremely talented individuals, together they made a team that is far greater than the sum of its parts. They made each other smarter; they pushed each other to work harder; and they were extremely respectful of each other.”

“The shipment mode optimization project is a leap toward using advanced analytics to automate Cisco’s supply chain,” said Hamin Oh (BSIE 18), Cisco supply chain project manager. “We have already started utilizing the model to suggest optimal mode shift targets to regional teams. This will play a key role in exceeding our annual mode shift goal, reducing our cost and CO2. This was possible thanks to a group of professional industrial engineers who thought outside the box to deliver a practical yet highly sophisticated solution.”

Team members included Karan Agrawal, Shelby Carswell, Weichao Chen, Trishla Chokshi, Shaiv Gandhi, Guergana Ilieva, Kayla Raabe, and Pavlos Sepetas.

Senior Design team “Cardiac Kids” partnered with the Emory Clinic’s Heart & Vascular Center. The team examined provider scheduling, patient scheduling, and exam room assignment as areas of potential improvement to reduce patient wait time and increase clinic throughput. Using their solutions, Emory can expect to achieve a 10 percent wait time reduction per patient. Based on these anticipated time savings, that the team estimates Emory can see nearly 2,000 additional patients per year, which equates to an additional contribution margin (revenue less variable costs) of $10.3 million per year.

Team members included Luke Allegood, Sarah Carpenter, Connor Childers, Emily Kaukol, Morgan McCombs, Noah Rittenberg, and Gregory Wilkes. Their faculty advisor was Professor Dave Goldsman.

The Senior Design team that worked with MARTA aimed to provide greater visibility into how patrons utilize the transit system. First, they designed a trip-chaining algorithm to extract the origin-destination pairs of patrons. Then, they performed a data envelopment analysis to identify relative bus route efficiency, revealing how routes connect riders. Finally, the team designed a machine-learning algorithm to predict ridership with census data and current resource allocation. Combining these capabilities, their Origin-Destination-Transfer (ODX) tool provides MARTA with the power to plan for the More MARTA initiative.

Team members included Karima Alkhalid, Andre Beroukhim, Josh Morgan, Conor Stewart, Adam Valletutti, Nick Williams, and Gideon Yuwono. Their faculty advisor was A. Russell Chandler III Chair and Professor Pascal Van Hentenryck.

The third ISyE Best of Senior Design finalist team created a comprehensive scheduling tool to help the UPS scheduling unit to configure weekly driver schedules for commercial customer pick-up and delivery. The scheduling tool utilizes advanced optimization techniques to transform UPS’s existing scheduling practice to a streamlined and automated system. The tool enhances drivers’ satisfaction and improves their lifestyle by ensuring consistent start times, designated meal breaks, and limits on work hours, while substantially reducing the business’ annual operating cost by approximately $550,000 for a single hub.

Team members included Nicholas Hoover, Shreya Jain, Andrew Klassen, Radhika Modi, Josh Rubin, Karnavv Shah, Daksh Varyani, and Linxi Xiao. Their faculty advisor was David M. McKenney Family Early Career Professor and Associate Professor Sebastian Pokutta.


  • Workflow Status:Published
  • Created By:Shelley Wunder-Smith
  • Created:05/14/2019
  • Modified By:Andy Haleblian
  • Modified:05/28/2019


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