Optimised duty plans save money at Keolis in Norway

When Keolis Norge were to create brand new duty plans with short notice due to an unforeseen change in timetables they did not have time to do this using the partially manual planning method they had used until now. Therefore, they got help from Trapeze who initially produced the duty plans for them using the Trapeze System optimisation module. After that, Keolis Norge chose to purchase the module, and today they can produce duty plans on their own, much faster and better than before.


Number of trains: 20
Number of employees: 100
Task: Light rail operation, Bybanen in Bergen, Norway
Trapeze product: Optimisation module for optimising duty plans. The module is an add- on for Trapeze System which Keolis Norge uses for planning operations, blocks, duties and rosters, employee allocation and automatic wage calculation.


”We often have production changes and for a long time, we have wanted to invest in the optimisation module for duty planning in Trapeze System,” says Nina Borgen who is Payroll Coordinator at Keolis Norge. ”We had planned to buy the solution when we were to make the next major changes to the duty plans but all of a sudden we got new timetables and we only had a couple of months to finish the new duty plans. This would be difficult to do with our usual more or less manual planning and therefore we decided to invest in the optimisation module right away.”

The first duty plans were created by Trapeze
To begin with, Keolis Norge asked for assistance from Trapeze consultants to help create the duty plans using the new module. Therefore, Trapeze entered all the required data in the system and made suggestions for the new duty plans. Nina Borgen explains: ”By letting Trapeze create the first plans for us, we were able to finish in time. At the same time it offered us the opportunity to see the great possibilities in the system and how we could use it optimally in the future.”

Several day’s work is now done in just a few hours
”Without the optimisation module, we would have used several days creating the duty plans manually, and during that time we would have had to put aside all other work,” Nina Borgen continues. ”Furthermore, it would have been difficult to know whether the plan we had created was the best one possible. With the optimisation module we can now test several different scenarios in a short time and create several suggestions for duty plans. We can now do in just a few hours what previously took us several days, and we have assurance that we choose the best plan.”


Statistics show what works
One of the features that Keolis Norge reckon they will particularly benefit from in the optimisation module is the option of extracting statistics. Nina Borgen elaborates: ”Until now, we have not had the data basis for evaluating the effectiveness of our plans, but the statistics let us specifically see what works and what does not work. This means that we can easily make corrections from time to time – it just requires a few adjustments in the parameters we have entered.”

Ready to create duty plans themselves
After having created the first duty plans with assistance from Trapeze, Keolis Norge felt ready to learn how to create the plans on their own. ”We already know Trapeze System, so it is just a new module we have to learn how to use. I believe in learning-by-doing, so we just have to feel our way,”  Nina Borgen says.

Applicable rules and agreements are entered into the system
Planning Coordinator Atle Flo adds: ”Most likely, there will be some adjustments along the way. But Trapeze has already entered all applicable rules and labour agreements into the system, so most of the work is already done. We have many agreements we must adhere to, both locally and nationally. The health and safety agreement is the most important agreement for us by far. Trapeze has made sure that all Norwegian rules and laws are entered and we just have to adjust the system when rules and agreements change.”

Well prepared for the future
With the optimisation module, Keolis Norge feel prepared for the future. Atle Flo reports: ”We are facing an expansion of the light rail system over the next two years and in relation to this it is important for us to have a good tool that can help us meet the new requirements for duty planning. Then there are all the regular changes regarding e.g. summer and winter timetables or changes for holidays. All this is much easier for us to handle with the new module.”

”With the optimisation module we can test several different scenarios in a short time and create several suggestions for duty plans.”

Nina Borgen, Payroll Coordinator, Keolis Norge AS