The constraints are those conditions or real limiting factors that can directly affect our plan. Therefore, we must consider what our constraints may be when making our plan.
A constraint is a strict limitation. It is very easy to understand with an example:
If a plan has 100 Kg of capacity and has assigned stops that add up to 99 Kg of weight in total, it means that the plan is at 99% of its capacity. If there was only 1 pending stop to be assigned, and it required a capacity of 2Kg, the optimizer would not assign it since that would mean exceeding the 100Kg maximum load of the plan.
You can find various types of restrictions adapted for both drivers and stops; all of them designed so that you can adapt your plan to perfection:
Weight: Weight is a defined capacity both on routes and at stops. A plan can never carry more than its maximum weight.
Volume: Volume is a defined capacity both on routes and at stops. A plan can never load more than its maximum volume.
Time windows: The time window restriction corresponds to the hours enabled to make a stop or the time when a plan is made.
Provides / Requires: The provides and requires fields, defined in the routes and stops respectively, define the characteristics that a plan must have to make a stop, for example, “Refrigerated Truck”.
Maximum stops: The maximum number of stops that can be assigned to a plan.
Pickup: Enable this option if the operation contains pickups for deliveries.