Release roundup: backlogs, multi-precedence, alternate stops for route optimization

Replanning stops for your routes? Need to account for driver breaks? Have to consider multiple stops before a specific destination? The latest release bundle has you covered.

Welcome to our first release roundup of 2022! In recent weeks, we’ve been busy shipping new features requests – making our customers’ routing use cases more efficient. 

The latest on Nextmv Cloud

If you’ve been following along with our latest updates, you may have noticed that Nextmv Cloud is teeming with new functionality so you can get started right away for free.

Here’s a whirlwind tour of features hot off the press.

Alternate stops

What does the alternate stops constraint do?

Specifies a set of stops that can be interchanged, where one stop will be chosen from the group and assigned. For instance, alternate stops could be suitable break locations for a vehicle.

When should I use alternate stops?

  • Can a vehicle visit any one stop from a group of locations?
  • Are there preferred locations for driver breaks?

Use alternate stops to add just one stop from a list of stop options. For instance, if a vehicle needs to pick up produce, it can stop at any one of the given grocery store locations. The solver will choose the stop that results in the most optimal route and then return a solution with that alternate stop included. Customize the alternate stops section to create scheduled breaks by adding time windows. 

Learn more about alternate stops in the docs


What does the backlogs constraint do?

Ensures that stops that were assigned to a specific vehicle but not visited in a previous run are assigned to the same vehicle. The solver will determine the best order for the backlog stops along with any new stops inserted on the route.

When should I use backlogs?

  • Are there stops that did not get serviced in the last run?
  • Are there new stops that need to be added to a vehicle’s route?

You may want to use backlogs when you want to replan stops but keep them assigned to a given vehicle. For instance, backlogs are perfect if delivery items are already loaded into the assigned vehicle. There are two types of backlogs to consider: flexible (recommended) and fixed. Use flexible backlogs when you want to add stops to the vehicle's route in the cost-optimal order as determined by the solver. Use fixed backlogs when you want to control the order in which the backlog stops are serviced by the vehicle, rather than having the solver optimize the route. 

Learn more about backlogs in the docs


What does the multi-precedence constraint do?

Ensures that a stop precedes its multiple pickup or dropoff counterparts. Adding multiple stops per constraint keeps the input file simpler. 

When should I use multi-precedence?

  • Are there multiple dropoffs that must happen after a specific pickup?
  • Are there multiple pickups that must happen before a specific dropoff?

Use multi-precedence when a given stop precedes or succeeds multiple stops. Rather than having to define for each stop that ‘pickup-1’ precedes ‘final-dropoff’, ‘pickup-2’ precedes ‘final-dropoff’, and ‘pickup-3’ precedes ‘final-dropoff’, you can simply apply a list of stops that should be visited before ‘final-dropoff’ using the succeeds constraint. 

Learn more about multi-precedence in the docs

Get started

Sign up or log in to Nextmv Cloud and try these out today!

Have a question about a new feature? Want to request functionality? Reach out to us

We’re always happy to chat about all things optimization.

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