- Linear Programming using Pyomo
- Networking and Professional Development for Machine Learning Careers in the USA
- Predicting Employee Churn in Python
- Airflow Operators
- MLOps Tutorial

## Solving Assignment Problem using Linear Programming in Python

Learn how to use Python PuLP to solve Assignment problems using Linear Programming.

In earlier articles, we have seen various applications of Linear programming such as transportation, transshipment problem, Cargo Loading problem, and shift-scheduling problem. Now In this tutorial, we will focus on another model that comes under the class of linear programming model known as the Assignment problem. Its objective function is similar to transportation problems. Here we minimize the objective function time or cost of manufacturing the products by allocating one job to one machine.

If we want to solve the maximization problem assignment problem then we subtract all the elements of the matrix from the highest element in the matrix or multiply the entire matrix by –1 and continue with the procedure. For solving the assignment problem, we use the Assignment technique or Hungarian method, or Flood’s technique.

The transportation problem is a special case of the linear programming model and the assignment problem is a special case of transportation problem, therefore it is also a special case of the linear programming problem.

In this tutorial, we are going to cover the following topics:

## Assignment Problem

A problem that requires pairing two sets of items given a set of paired costs or profit in such a way that the total cost of the pairings is minimized or maximized. The assignment problem is a special case of linear programming.

For example, an operation manager needs to assign four jobs to four machines. The project manager needs to assign four projects to four staff members. Similarly, the marketing manager needs to assign the 4 salespersons to 4 territories. The manager’s goal is to minimize the total time or cost.

## Problem Formulation

A manager has prepared a table that shows the cost of performing each of four jobs by each of four employees. The manager has stated his goal is to develop a set of job assignments that will minimize the total cost of getting all 4 jobs.

## Initialize LP Model

In this step, we will import all the classes and functions of pulp module and create a Minimization LP problem using LpProblem class.

## Define Decision Variable

In this step, we will define the decision variables. In our problem, we have two variable lists: workers and jobs. Let’s create them using LpVariable.dicts() class. LpVariable.dicts() used with Python’s list comprehension. LpVariable.dicts() will take the following four values:

- First, prefix name of what this variable represents.
- Second is the list of all the variables.
- Third is the lower bound on this variable.
- Fourth variable is the upper bound.
- Fourth is essentially the type of data (discrete or continuous). The options for the fourth parameter are LpContinuous or LpInteger .

Let’s first create a list route for the route between warehouse and project site and create the decision variables using LpVariable.dicts() the method.

## Define Objective Function

In this step, we will define the minimum objective function by adding it to the LpProblem object. lpSum(vector)is used here to define multiple linear expressions. It also used list comprehension to add multiple variables.

## Define the Constraints

Here, we are adding two types of constraints: Each job can be assigned to only one employee constraint and Each employee can be assigned to only one job. We have added the 2 constraints defined in the problem by adding them to the LpProblem object.

## Solve Model

In this step, we will solve the LP problem by calling solve() method. We can print the final value by using the following for loop.

From the above results, we can infer that Worker-1 will be assigned to Job-1, Worker-2 will be assigned to job-3, Worker-3 will be assigned to Job-2, and Worker-4 will assign with job-4.

In this article, we have learned about Assignment problems, Problem Formulation, and implementation using the python PuLp library. We have solved the Assignment problem using a Linear programming problem in Python. Of course, this is just a simple case study, we can add more constraints to it and make it more complicated. You can also run other case studies on Cargo Loading problems , Staff scheduling problems . In upcoming articles, we will write more on different optimization problems such as transshipment problem, balanced diet problem. You can revise the basics of mathematical concepts in this article and learn about Linear Programming in this article .

- Solving Blending Problem in Python using Gurobi
- Transshipment Problem in Python Using PuLP

## You May Also Like

## Sensitivity Analysis in Python

## XGBoost Algorithm using Python

## Support Vector Machine Classification in Scikit-learn

## Your Article Library

Assignment problem in linear programming : introduction and assignment model.

ADVERTISEMENTS:

Assignment problem is a special type of linear programming problem which deals with the allocation of the various resources to the various activities on one to one basis. It does it in such a way that the cost or time involved in the process is minimum and profit or sale is maximum. Though there problems can be solved by simplex method or by transportation method but assignment model gives a simpler approach for these problems.

In a factory, a supervisor may have six workers available and six jobs to fire. He will have to take decision regarding which job should be given to which worker. Problem forms one to one basis. This is an assignment problem.

## 1. Assignment Model :

Suppose there are n facilitates and n jobs it is clear that in this case, there will be n assignments. Each facility or say worker can perform each job, one at a time. But there should be certain procedure by which assignment should be made so that the profit is maximized or the cost or time is minimized.

In the table, Co ij is defined as the cost when j th job is assigned to i th worker. It maybe noted here that this is a special case of transportation problem when the number of rows is equal to number of columns.

## Mathematical Formulation:

Any basic feasible solution of an Assignment problem consists (2n – 1) variables of which the (n – 1) variables are zero, n is number of jobs or number of facilities. Due to this high degeneracy, if we solve the problem by usual transportation method, it will be a complex and time consuming work. Thus a separate technique is derived for it. Before going to the absolute method it is very important to formulate the problem.

Suppose x jj is a variable which is defined as

1 if the i th job is assigned to j th machine or facility

0 if the i th job is not assigned to j th machine or facility.

Now as the problem forms one to one basis or one job is to be assigned to one facility or machine.

The total assignment cost will be given by

The above definition can be developed into mathematical model as follows:

Determine x ij > 0 (i, j = 1,2, 3…n) in order to

Subjected to constraints

and x ij is either zero or one.

## Method to solve Problem (Hungarian Technique):

Consider the objective function of minimization type. Following steps are involved in solving this Assignment problem,

1. Locate the smallest cost element in each row of the given cost table starting with the first row. Now, this smallest element is subtracted form each element of that row. So, we will be getting at least one zero in each row of this new table.

2. Having constructed the table (as by step-1) take the columns of the table. Starting from first column locate the smallest cost element in each column. Now subtract this smallest element from each element of that column. Having performed the step 1 and step 2, we will be getting at least one zero in each column in the reduced cost table.

3. Now, the assignments are made for the reduced table in following manner.

(i) Rows are examined successively, until the row with exactly single (one) zero is found. Assignment is made to this single zero by putting square □ around it and in the corresponding column, all other zeros are crossed out (x) because these will not be used to make any other assignment in this column. Step is conducted for each row.

(ii) Step 3 (i) in now performed on the columns as follow:- columns are examined successively till a column with exactly one zero is found. Now , assignment is made to this single zero by putting the square around it and at the same time, all other zeros in the corresponding rows are crossed out (x) step is conducted for each column.

(iii) Step 3, (i) and 3 (ii) are repeated till all the zeros are either marked or crossed out. Now, if the number of marked zeros or the assignments made are equal to number of rows or columns, optimum solution has been achieved. There will be exactly single assignment in each or columns without any assignment. In this case, we will go to step 4.

4. At this stage, draw the minimum number of lines (horizontal and vertical) necessary to cover all zeros in the matrix obtained in step 3, Following procedure is adopted:

(iii) Now tick mark all the rows that are not already marked and that have assignment in the marked columns.

(iv) All the steps i.e. (4(i), 4(ii), 4(iii) are repeated until no more rows or columns can be marked.

(v) Now draw straight lines which pass through all the un marked rows and marked columns. It can also be noticed that in an n x n matrix, always less than ‘n’ lines will cover all the zeros if there is no solution among them.

5. In step 4, if the number of lines drawn are equal to n or the number of rows, then it is the optimum solution if not, then go to step 6.

6. Select the smallest element among all the uncovered elements. Now, this element is subtracted from all the uncovered elements and added to the element which lies at the intersection of two lines. This is the matrix for fresh assignments.

7. Repeat the procedure from step (3) until the number of assignments becomes equal to the number of rows or number of columns.

## Related Articles:

- Two Phase Methods of Problem Solving in Linear Programming: First and Second Phase
- Linear Programming: Applications, Definitions and Problems

## No comments yet.

Leave a reply click here to cancel reply..

You must be logged in to post a comment.

## Assignment Model | Linear Programming Problem (LPP) | Introduction

What is assignment model.

→ Assignment model is a special application of Linear Programming Problem (LPP) , in which the main objective is to assign the work or task to a group of individuals such that;

i) There is only one assignment.

ii) All the assignments should be done in such a way that the overall cost is minimized (or profit is maximized, incase of maximization).

→ In assignment problem, the cost of performing each task by each individual is known. → It is desired to find out the best assignments, such that overall cost of assigning the work is minimized.

## For example:

Suppose there are 'n' tasks, which are required to be performed using 'n' resources.

The cost of performing each task by each resource is also known (shown in cells of matrix)

- In the above asignment problem, we have to provide assignments such that there is one to one assignments and the overall cost is minimized.

## How Assignment Problem is related to LPP? OR Write mathematical formulation of Assignment Model.

→ Assignment Model is a special application of Linear Programming (LP).

→ The mathematical formulation for Assignment Model is given below:

→ Let, C i j \text {C}_{ij} C ij denotes the cost of resources 'i' to the task 'j' ; such that

→ Now assignment problems are of the Minimization type. So, our objective function is to minimize the overall cost.

→ Subjected to constraint;

(i) For all j t h j^{th} j t h task, only one i t h i^{th} i t h resource is possible:

(ii) For all i t h i^{th} i t h resource, there is only one j t h j^{th} j t h task possible;

(iii) x i j x_{ij} x ij is '0' or '1'.

## Types of Assignment Problem:

(i) balanced assignment problem.

- It consist of a suqare matrix (n x n).
- Number of rows = Number of columns

## (ii) Unbalanced Assignment Problem

- It consist of a Non-square matrix.
- Number of rows ≠ \not= = Number of columns

## Methods to solve Assignment Model:

(i) integer programming method:.

In assignment problem, either allocation is done to the cell or not.

So this can be formulated using 0 or 1 integer.

While using this method, we will have n x n decision varables, and n+n equalities.

So even for 4 x 4 matrix problem, it will have 16 decision variables and 8 equalities.

So this method becomes very lengthy and difficult to solve.

## (ii) Transportation Methods:

As assignment problem is a special case of transportation problem, it can also be solved using transportation methods.

In transportation methods ( NWCM , LCM & VAM), the total number of allocations will be (m+n-1) and the solution is known as non-degenerated. (For eg: for 3 x 3 matrix, there will be 3+3-1 = 5 allocations)

But, here in assignment problems, the matrix is a square matrix (m=n).

So total allocations should be (n+n-1), i.e. for 3 x 3 matrix, it should be (3+3-1) = 5

But, we know that in 3 x 3 assignment problem, maximum possible possible assignments are 3 only.

So, if are we will use transportation methods, then the solution will be degenerated as it does not satisfy the condition of (m+n-1) allocations.

So, the method becomes lengthy and time consuming.

## (iii) Enumeration Method:

It is a simple trail and error type method.

Consider a 3 x 3 assignment problem. Here the assignments are done randomly and the total cost is found out.

For 3 x 3 matrix, the total possible trails are 3! So total 3! = 3 x 2 x 1 = 6 trails are possible.

The assignments which gives minimum cost is selected as optimal solution.

But, such trail and error becomes very difficult and lengthy.

If there are more number of rows and columns, ( For eg: For 6 x 6 matrix, there will be 6! trails. So 6! = 6 x 5 x 4 x 3 x 2 x 1 = 720 trails possible) then such methods can't be applied for solving assignments problems.

## (iv) Hungarian Method:

It was developed by two mathematicians of Hungary. So, it is known as Hungarian Method.

It is also know as Reduced matrix method or Flood's technique.

There are two main conditions for applying Hungarian Method:

(1) Square Matrix (n x n). (2) Problem should be of minimization type.

## Suggested Notes:

## Unbalanced Transportation Problem Numerical

## Modified Distribution Method (MODI) | Transportation Problem | Transportation Model

## Stepping Stone | Transportation Problem | Transportation Model

## Vogel’s Approximation Method (VAM) | Method to Solve Transportation Problem | Transportation Model

## Transportation Model - Introduction

## North West Corner Method | Method to Solve Transportation Problem | Transportation Model

## Least Cost Method | Method to Solve Transportation Problem | Transportation Model

## Tie in selecting row and column (Vogel's Approximation Method - VAM) | Numerical | Solving Transportation Problem | Transportation Model

## Critical Path Method [CPM] - Steps and Introduction | Network Analysis | Operation Research

## Crashing Special Case - Multiple (Parallel) Critical Paths

## Crashing Special Case - Indirect cost less than Crash Cost

## Basics of Program Evaluation and Review Technique (PERT)

## Numerical on PERT (Program Evaluation and Review Technique)

## Network Analysis - Dealing with Network Construction Basics

## Construct a project network with predecessor relationship | Operation Research | Numerical

## Graphical Method | Methods to solve LPP | Linear Programming

## Basics of Linear Programming

## Linear Programming Problem (LPP) Formulation with Numericals

All comments that you add will await moderation. We'll publish all comments that are topic related, and adhere to our Code of Conduct .

Want to tell us something privately? Contact Us

## Post comment

## Education Lessons

Stay in touch, [notes] operation research, [notes] dynamics of machinery, [notes] maths, [notes] science, [notes] computer aided design.

## Assignment Problem: Linear Programming

The assignment problem is a special type of transportation problem , where the objective is to minimize the cost or time of completing a number of jobs by a number of persons.

In other words, when the problem involves the allocation of n different facilities to n different tasks, it is often termed as an assignment problem.

The model's primary usefulness is for planning. The assignment problem also encompasses an important sub-class of so-called shortest- (or longest-) route models. The assignment model is useful in solving problems such as, assignment of machines to jobs, assignment of salesmen to sales territories, travelling salesman problem, etc.

It may be noted that with n facilities and n jobs, there are n! possible assignments. One way of finding an optimal assignment is to write all the n! possible arrangements, evaluate their total cost, and select the assignment with minimum cost. But, due to heavy computational burden this method is not suitable. This chapter concentrates on an efficient method for solving assignment problems that was developed by a Hungarian mathematician D.Konig.

"A mathematician is a device for turning coffee into theorems." -Paul Erdos

## Formulation of an assignment problem

Suppose a company has n persons of different capacities available for performing each different job in the concern, and there are the same number of jobs of different types. One person can be given one and only one job. The objective of this assignment problem is to assign n persons to n jobs, so as to minimize the total assignment cost. The cost matrix for this problem is given below:

The structure of an assignment problem is identical to that of a transportation problem.

To formulate the assignment problem in mathematical programming terms , we define the activity variables as

for i = 1, 2, ..., n and j = 1, 2, ..., n

In the above table, c ij is the cost of performing jth job by ith worker.

## Generalized Form of an Assignment Problem

The optimization model is

Minimize c 11 x 11 + c 12 x 12 + ------- + c nn x nn

subject to x i1 + x i2 +..........+ x in = 1 i = 1, 2,......., n x 1j + x 2j +..........+ x nj = 1 j = 1, 2,......., n

x ij = 0 or 1

## In Σ Sigma notation

x ij = 0 or 1 for all i and j

An assignment problem can be solved by transportation methods, but due to high degree of degeneracy the usual computational techniques of a transportation problem become very inefficient. Therefore, a special method is available for solving such type of problems in a more efficient way.

## Assumptions in Assignment Problem

- Number of jobs is equal to the number of machines or persons.
- Each man or machine is assigned only one job.
- Each man or machine is independently capable of handling any job to be done.
- Assigning criteria is clearly specified (minimizing cost or maximizing profit).

Share this article with your friends

Operations Research Simplified Back Next

Goal programming Linear programming Simplex Method Transportation Problem

## Quantitative Techniques: Theory and Problems by P. C. Tulsian, Vishal Pandey

Get full access to Quantitative Techniques: Theory and Problems and 60K+ other titles, with a free 10-day trial of O'Reilly.

There are also live events, courses curated by job role, and more.

## WHAT IS ASSIGNMENT PROBLEM

Assignment Problem is a special type of linear programming problem where the objective is to minimise the cost or time of completing a number of jobs by a number of persons.

The assignment problem in the general form can be stated as follows:

“Given n facilities, n jobs and the effectiveness of each facility for each job, the problem is to assign each facility to one and only one job in such a way that the measure of effectiveness is optimised (Maximised or Minimised).”

Several problems of management has a structure identical with the assignment problem.

Example I A manager has four persons (i.e. facilities) available for four separate jobs (i.e. jobs) and the cost of assigning (i.e. effectiveness) each job to each ...

Get Quantitative Techniques: Theory and Problems now with the O’Reilly learning platform.

O’Reilly members experience books, live events, courses curated by job role, and more from O’Reilly and nearly 200 top publishers.

## Don’t leave empty-handed

Get Mark Richards’s Software Architecture Patterns ebook to better understand how to design components—and how they should interact.

## It’s yours, free.

## Check it out now on O’Reilly

Dive in for free with a 10-day trial of the O’Reilly learning platform—then explore all the other resources our members count on to build skills and solve problems every day.

## IMAGES

## VIDEO

## COMMENTS

Advantages of linear programming include that it can be used to analyze all different areas of life, it is a good solution for complex problems, it allows for better solution, it unifies disparate areas and it is flexible.

In computer programming, a linear data structure is any data structure that must be traversed linearly. Examples of linear data structures include linked lists, stacks and queues. For example, consider a list of employees and their salaries...

Linear programming is used daily in the real world to optimize the allocation of resources or activities to generate the most benefit or profit. Linear programming can take multiple factors into account into the thousands and is used extens...

A manager has prepared a table that shows the cost of performing each of four jobs by each of four employees. The manager has stated his goal is

Assignment problem is a special type of linear programming problem which deals with the allocation of the various resources to the various activities on one

LINEAR PROGRAMMING PROBLEM. 8 / 62. Page 135. FORMULATION OF A LINEAR PROGRAMMING.

This video is part of a lecture series available at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCMvO2umWRQtlUeoibC8fp8Q.

For example: Example I: A manager has four persons (i.e.

example: Suppose there are 'n' tasks, which are required to be performed

The assignment problem is a special type of transportation problem, where the objective is to minimize the cost or time of completing a number of jobs by a

In this work, the problem of job-machine assignment was formulated as a linear programming (LP) models and then solved by the simplex method.

If the total cost of the assignment for all tasks is equal to the sum of the costs for each agent (or the sum

Assignment Problem is a special type of linear programming problem where the objective is to minimise the cost or time of completing a number of jobs by a

Example. Consider the basic feasible solution computed by applying the northwest corner method on page 166. Operations Research. Linear Programming