Organizational Structure Mary Jo Hatch Organization Theory p. 180-193
Social Structure • The duality of structure: • Constrains the choices about activities • But structures are created by the activities • Enabling interaction: • Can be seen as fixed immovable • Or as a moment of everchanging interactivity
Two purposes Social structure is giving a picture of: • The differentiation between work activities • And at the same time indicating the major challenges of integrating the same activities
Organization Chart The Org. Chart is a representation of: • The hierarchy of authority: • the vertical structure or • the chain of command • The division of labour: • the horisontal coordination or • the work specialization
Chain of Command • Unbroken line of authority that links all persons in an organization. • Shows who reports to whom. • Associated with two underlying principles. • Unity of Command. • Scalar Principle.
Work Specialization • Tasks are subdivided into individual jobs. • Division of labor concept. • Employees perform only the tasks relevant to their specialized function. • Jobs tend to be small, but they can be performed efficiently. • Many organizations are moving away from this principle.
Authority • Formal and legitimate right of a manager to make decisions, issue orders, and to allocate resources to achieve organizationally desired outcomes. • Authority is distinguished by three characteristics: • Authority is vested in organizational positions, not people. • Authority is accepted by subordinates. • Authority flows down the vertical hierarchy.
Span of Control • The number of employees reporting to a supervisor. • Traditional view, seven or so per manager. • Many organizations today, 30 or more per manager. • Generally if supervisors must be closely involved with employees span should be small.
Tall versus Flat Structure • Span of control used in an organization determines whether the structure is tall or flat. • Tall structure has a narrow span and more hierarchical levels. • Flat structure has a wide span, is horizontally dispersed and fewer hierarchical levels. • The trend has been toward wider spans of control.
Five structual alternatives • Vertical functional approach. People are grouped together in departments by common skills. • Divisional approach. Grouped together based on a common product, program, or geographical region. • Horizontal matrix approach. Functional and divisional chains of command. Some employees report to two bosses. • Team-based approach. Created to accomplish specific tasks. • Network approach. Small, central hub electronically connected to their other organizations that perform vital functions. Departments are independent, and can be located anywhere.