The founders of Hermes Traffic Intelligence have a background in Operations Research, and the methods and principles in this research branch are still held high in the work of the company. In Operations Research the aim is often to optimize operations within an organisation. This is done to utilize the resources available better, to minimize costs, or to maximize profit. Often there are a multitude of different ways to combine e.g. resources, and it is not feasible to investigate the outcome of each of these combinations. Therefore a large part of the tasks within Operations Research is about minimizing the amount of combinations to investigate, so an optimal solution (or some times “just a good solution”) can be found and implemented.
Operations Research is often used within transportation, e.g. to find the shortest route to cover a number of customers, or to pack a container ship. The methods used may also be applied in areas not often thought of in relation to traditional Operations Research. At Hermes Traffic Intelligence we use e.g. Branch and Bound, a method traditionally used to solve problems related to Integer Programming, in finding best possible match between stretches from different road networks. This method is part of a hybrid of different methods and algorithms, each designed for a specific part of the overall task.