Introduction to Linear Programming

Due to the increasing complexity of business organizations, the role of the management executive as a decision maker is becoming more and more difficult.

During the last thirty years or so, several statistical and mathematical techniques have been developed in order to address this situation. It may be observed that certain problems facing business executives may have many alternative solutions. They want to select the alternative which maximizes profits, cuts down losses, minimizes cost and so on.

Linear programming is a useful technique to solve such problems. The necessary condition is that the data must be expressed in quantitative terms in the form of linear equations and inequalities. The general nature of the business problems in which linear programming can be effectively used are multifarious. They include purchasing, transportation, job assignments, production scheduling and mixing.

Linear programming provides a method to maximize and minimize a first degree function subject to certain environmental restrictions or constraints which are usually in the form of equations and inequalities.